How ransomware is impacting companies in six major industries

BitSight analyzed the security ratings of nearly 20,000 companies to identify common forms of ransomware and to determine which industries (amongst Finance, Healthcare, Education, Energy/Utilities, Retail, and Government) are most likely to experience attacks.

ransomware rising

Percentage of companies in each industry with ransomware

“Ransomware is a legitimate threat, with estimates from the U.S. Justice Department showing that over 4,000 of these attacks have occurred every day since the beginning of 2016,” said Stephen Boyer, co-founder and CTO of BitSight. “While several ransomware attacks on healthcare companies have made headlines this year, the issue is more widespread. Our analysis shows that the Education sector is actually the most impacted group, followed by Government. Establishing email security protocols, monitoring key third-party vendors, tracking security ratings and avoiding file sharing are all ways to mitigate risks associated with ransomware.”

Ransomware rising

The rate of ransomware has significantly increased for every industry examined over the last 12 months. Cyber criminals seem to be finding a lucrative business through ransomware attacks.

Although ransomware is not typically associated with the Finance industry, researchers discovered that more than 115 different Financial Services organizations have some form of ransomware on their corporate networks.

Education has highest rate of ransomware

Education has the highest rate of ransomware of all industries examined in this report. In fact, these institutions have over three times the rate of ransomware found in Healthcare and more than ten times the rate found in Finance.

ransomware rising

Percentage of ransomware observed over the past year, including Nymaim and Matsnu strains

Over one in ten organizations in Education has been impacted by Nymaim, while 34 different Government groups have been hit with Locky, which was discovered only eight months ago.

The threat to finance and government

Of the six industries examined, Government had the second-lowest security rating and the second-highest rate of ransomware. In fact, ransomware in this sector more than tripled over the last 12 months.

Although ransomware is not typically associated with the Finance industry, researchers discovered that more than 115 different Financial Services organizations have some form of ransomware on their corporate networks.