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Windows ransomware thrives in APJ with LockBit leading the way | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware

The golden age of Windows ransomware appears to be here, judging by the statistics provided by content delivery network Akamai in its latest State of the Internet report that spans the period from October 2021 to the end of May 2023.

The data used in the report was collected from the leak sites of approximately 90 different ransomware groups, the company said. This article concentrates on the APJ statistics; the report also contains an abundance of data from other regions.

It found the LockBit ransomware group ahead of the rest in the APJ region, followed closely by Alphv and Cl0p. The report is titled “Ransomware on the Move: Exploitation Techniques and the Active Pursuit of Zero-Days”.

Key findings:

LockBit is the most prevalent ransomware in each industry in APJ, accounting for 60% of attacks in manufacturing, 55.8% in business services, 57.7% in construction, 45.8% in retail, and 28.6% in energy.

The CL0P ransomware group is aggressively exploiting zero-day vulnerabilities, like MOVEit, which contributed to the spike in ransomware victims in APJ in 1Q 2023, and the ongoing ransomware events in June this year.

apj industries

A majority of ransomware victims in APJ are small-to-medium sized enterprises with reported revenue of up to US$50 million (A$76.3 million).

Ransomware groups are increasingly targeting exfiltration of files, which has become the primary source of extortion, indicating that file back-up solutions may no longer be sufficient to protect against ransomware.

apj victims

Victims of multiple ransomware attacks were more than six times more likely to experience the second attack within three months of the first attack.

Dean Houari, Akamai’s director of Security Technology and Strategy, said: “Adversaries behind ransomware attacks continue to evolve their techniques and strategies striking at the heart of organisations by exfiltrating their critical and sensitive information.

lifecycle ransomware

“It’s imperative that both the private and public sectors across APJ strengthen collaboration to help organisations defend against ever-growing ransomware threats.

“Businesses – especially SMEs in APJ – must work to adopt a zero trust architecture starting with software-defined micro-segmentation in order to effectively mitigate ever evolving cyber attacks as well as ransomware-as-a-service.

“By doing so, they can successfully protect their critical assets, business reputation, and ensure business continuity regardless of the type of attack tool deployed by cyber criminal gangs.”

The report can be downloaded free here after registration.


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