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Hacktivist groups target Indian entities with high-profile ransomware attacks | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware

Cybersecurity solutions firm Seqrite has said that there is a surge in the sale of access to Indian entities,  both government and corporate, by initial access brokers in the underground forums in the first quarter of 2024. 

The quarter also witnessed an increase in high-profile ransomware attacks, and more than 2,900 disruptive attacks such as DDoS (distributed denial of services), website defacement and database leaks by over 85 hacktivist groups on Telegram in the quarter, Seqrite said in a latest report.

According to the latest Crimeware report by Arete, a global leader in incident response and cyber risk management, throughout Q1, law enforcement continued to pressure large Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) groups, significantly disrupting LockBit’s operations.

The trend of fewer organisations paying ransoms continued, as a ransom was paid in just 34 per cent of Arete engagements during the first quarter of 2024. 

  • Also read: Pakistani hackers up attacks on Indian govt during general elections: Seqrite

“The latest insights from cybersecurity stalwarts paint a sobering picture of escalating threats, with sophisticated attacks targeting governments, corporations, and individuals alike,” it said. From the recent surge in Pakistan-linked APT groups during elections in India to the disruption of major RaaS operations, and the unsettling prevalence of ransom payments, the cybersecurity community faces a formidable challenge in safeguarding against the rising tide of ransomware assaults.

As per the India Threat Report launched by Seqrite, ransomware authors continually evolve their methodologies and employ sophisticated techniques to evade traditional signature-based detection.

Seqrite also revealed a recent surge in cyberattacks by Pakistan-linked APT groups such as SideCopy and APT36 (Transparent Tribe) not only targeting the Indian government and military bodies, particularly alarming amidst the ongoing elections but new spear-phishing campaigns such as Operation RusticWeb and FlightNight have emerged.

Cybernomics 101, a survey report by Barracuda, said that 71% of respondents had experienced a ransomware attack over the last year, and 61% paid the ransom. The report offers insight from survey respondents who identified as ethical hackers on the most widely used attack vectors and which of these might offer the greatest return for attackers.

“While the Cybernomics 101 research underscores the harsh reality of suffering a data breach, it also underscores that organisations are not powerless,” Fleming Shi, CTO of Barracuda, said. “Proactive monitoring and attack detection to prevent progression to more severe stages like data exfiltration or ransomware is key. By preparing for these scenarios today, organizations can significantly reduce the impact and cost of these incidents,” he said.

  • Also read: Burnout among cybersecurity professionals threaten to weaken security shield

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