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WINTER 2019 TODAY’S GENER AL COUNSEL

Cybersecurity

Ransomware Attacks Hit Legal System By Antonio Challita

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ansomware has become the premier weapon of choice for cybercriminals. While some claim that ransomware attacks are slowing down, the data shows otherwise. A recent report by SonicWall shows that nearly 100,000 ransomware attacks are happening per day in 2018. This is a whopping 25 times higher than the previous number of 4,000 attacks per day that was reported by the FBI in 2016.

From a cybercriminal’s perspective, the motivation to continue launching ransomware attacks remains high. This is due to a number of factors. 1. Effort: Ransomware is easy to obtain through Ransomware-as-aService providers, many of which offer variants that are undetectable by an antivirus. 2. Distribution: Ransomware is one of the easiest forms of malware to

distribute, shared primarily through phishing emails, remote desktop connections and compromised websites. 3. Payment: Ransomware payouts are at an all-time high, with some campaigns — such as the infamous SamSam — generating $5,900,000 and counting for the authors. 4. Traceability: Cryptocurrency grants cybercriminals some anonymity and helps them evade law enforcement. 5. Risk: The risk of launching ransom-

Profile for Today's General Counsel

Today's General Counsel, Winter 2019