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Crypto Ransomware Payments Surpassed $1 Billion, Surging 94% in 2023 | #ransomware | #cybercrime


Crypto ransomware is a global threat as fraudsters exploit vulnerable systems and extort victims in cyberspace. BanklessTimes.com reports that 2023 was a field day for cybercriminals as crypto ransomware payments surged 94% to exceed $1 billion.

Jonathan Merry, BanklessTimes CEO, was concerned with the statistics:

The astronomical rise in crypto-ransomware in payments in 2023 shows the frequency and severity of these attacks. Cybercriminals have become adept at exploiting vulnerabilities in computer systems, targeting individuals, small businesses, large corporations, government entities, and vital infrastructure.

Ransomware Payments Trends

The decline in crypto-ransomware incidents during 2022 is attributed mainly to many victims refusing to meet the demands. The drop was almost 42.3%, from $983 million in 2021 to $567 million in 2023. However, the comeback in 2023 proves that cybercriminals are innovative in their approaches to target institutions, resulting in total payments reaching as high as $1.1 billion.

One critical event that made the space lucrative for cybercriminals was the Bitcoin rally. Bitcoin has been bearish for the better part of 2023, Jumping by 60% from September to $43,134. Enthusiasm around Bitcoin ETF approval was the more significant push. Additionally, big game hunting, where cybercriminals target wealthy entities, was back in 2023 after being dormant in 2022.

MOVEit Transfer fell victim to ransomware in 2023 after the notorious Clop ransomware group attacked them. The incident resulted in MOVEit Transfer losing sensitive data belonging to numerous entities, impacting as many as 18 million individuals. Concurrently, there was a significant uptick in smaller-scale ransomware attacks.

2023 Ransomware Stats

Ransomware attacks have affected all sectors and industries. Among 3,000 organizations surveyed, 66% reported falling victim to ransomware attacks in 2023. Of these, 29% attributed the attacks to compromised credentials, while 36% cited exploited vulnerabilities as the cause.

While big game hunting remained prevalent in 2023, small and medium businesses were not spared either. 13% of such entities experienced ransomware attacks in 2023. The trend was worrying as 24% of the respondents also have endured a ransomware attack at some point.

The apprehension surrounding ransomware attacks is real. Authorities must remain vigilant in safeguarding the public against these malicious attacks.



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