Ransomware attacks grew 485% in 2020 compared to 2019, according to Bitdefender’s recently-released “2020 Consumer Threat Landscape Report”
According to the report, “Since the world had to adapt to remote work, and staying at home became the new normal, threat actors have also updated their spam-sending tactics by focusing more on delivering seemingly legitimate emails, in an attempt to maximize their chances of infecting users.” The report goes on to note that 26% of total reports came from fake applications “impersonating popular video conference software” in April and May of last year.
Behavior has changed slightly, as attackers are focusing less on the number of attacks and more on the quality of victims, often going after not just large businesses, but their customers as well. From the report: ““Big game hunting” is a tactic that ransomware operators seem to have adopted throughout 2020, to which they’ve added an extortion component, threatening to openly publish the stolen data if the ransom note is not paid.”
“As the pandemic continues we are constantly seeing attacks evolve through malware delivery mechanisms, inventive social engineering and new exploits,” said Bitdefender Director of Threat Research and Reporting Bogdan Botezatu, continuing, “Cyber-criminals will stop at nothing to use outlier events and human empathy to line their pockets.”