Ransomware is a growing cybersecurity threat that can cost companies millions of dollars in downtime and lost revenue. Understanding the costs of a ransomware attack will help you plan for mitigation and recovery options.
Ransomware attacks can result in a wide range of costs, from downtime to legal and regulatory fines. It can also destroy trust in your organization and affect customer relationships.
Cost of Downtime
Ransomware attack meaning matters, for it, is a real threat to businesses, and the costs can be high. These costs include lost productivity, data loss, damage to brand reputation, and recovery expenses.
Depending on the industry and size of the organization, these costs can vary wildly. For example, a hospital or a small-scale private clinic would have less to lose in the case of an outage than a bank that handles high-level transactions.
Downtime also affects the company’s productivity. It can result in overtime or extra hours of labor that the employees have to pay for, lowering their salaries and benefits.
Another cost of downtime is the disruption to a business’s ability to deliver products or services to customers. For example, Denmark’s transportation and logistics company Maersk reported that its downtime due to a ransomware attack caused it to lose $300 million in business interruption losses.
These costs can also have an impact on customer churn. A reliable platform for your products or services is essential to maintain a steady customer base.
There are several ways to reduce the risk of downtime. These include machine maintenance, adequate data backups, and a disaster recovery strategy. In addition, staff training can also minimize downtime costs. Finally, a comprehensive cyber insurance policy can help cover some of the costs of an attack. However, these policies are only sometimes available to some businesses and can be costly.
Cost of Recovering Encrypted Data
The cost of recovering encrypted data varies based on the ransomware type and the complexity of the recovery process. In some cases, restoring files from backups might be as simple, but the recovery process will require specialized cybersecurity expertise in other instances.
Ransomware can be devastating for businesses and their clients. It can cut off access to vital services, disrupt operations, and result in loss of revenue or other economic losses.
As the number of ransomware attacks increases, so do the costs of a successful recovery. According to a Sophos report, The State of Ransomware 2021, the average cost of remediation in the US has more than doubled over the last year.
One of the biggest reasons for this increased cost is the rise in extortion attempts from ransomware groups. These extortion-only attacks target organizations they believe have the resources and ability to pay.
Another factor in determining the cost of recovering data is the size of the organization and its network. The larger the organization, the more resources it will require to run decryption utilities and other data recovery processes.
It’s also important to note that the cost of data restoration varies depending on how long it takes to restore the files. This is because the more complicated the restoration process becomes, the longer it will take to complete the job.
Cost of Backups
The cost of Ransomware attacks can vary based on the organization’s size, the type of data stored, and the severity of the attack. For example, Cybersecurity Ventures predicts that the average cost of a ransomware attack will be $20 billion in 2021, while Sophos reports that entertainment, technology, and energy companies are most susceptible to this threat.
The costs of backups can also vary based on the amount of data you store, the security level of your backups, and the sensitivity of your data. For instance, if you have financial records or customer information vital to your business, you should back up this data to an external storage device or the cloud.
A backup of this data can help you recover from a ransomware attack and save your business from paying a hefty sum to the hackers holding your data hostage. A backup can also protect your data from being published on the dark web, where it could be sold for a profit.
To mitigate the risks of ransomware, it’s critical to implement backup best practices and have a robust disaster recovery plan. These practices include using immutable SafeMode(TM) data snapshots, maintaining offline backups, and regularly testing your backups.
Moreover, you should ensure that all systems are regularly updated to the latest operating system or software version. This ensures that your backups contain the latest versions of the files you want to restore and avoids errors in restoring data.
Cost of Remediation
Ransomware attacks can cost millions of dollars in damage, including the costs of restoring affected systems and data. These losses include downtime, forensics, legal expenses, productivity loss, etc.
As a result, organizations are often faced with the difficult decision of paying a ransom to recover encrypted data or trying to repair their systems and resume normal operations. While it may be tempting to accede to attacker demands, security experts advise against this course of action as a business risk.
To respond appropriately to a ransomware attack, organizations must isolate impacted systems and take steps to eliminate the threat from the network as quickly as possible. This will minimize damage to other systems and ensure the most critical systems can be returned to regular operation.
Then, the organization should prioritize restoring systems based on productivity and revenue impact to reduce downtime. It should also enlist an expert to conduct root-cause analysis, remove any backdoors, and confirm what data is being held on the impacted systems.
Fortunately, there is a way to accurately calculate the total impact of cyberattacks so organizations can prioritize investments in security controls that help manage their risk more effectively. This is called financial quantification of cyber risk (CRQ). It’s important to note that CRQ can be complicated, but the resulting information can help organizations better understand the actual value of their cybersecurity investment.