Introduction 

   Ransomware is a type of malware that threatens the victim by destroying or blocking access to critical data or systems until a ransom is paid. Initially, most ransomware attacks used to target individuals. More recently though, human-controlled ransomware, which targets organizations, has become more common and more difficult to prevent and remove. With human-controlled ransomware, a group of attackers can use their collective intelligence to gain access to an organization’s corporate network. 

   This year alone, ransomware attacks have targeted Microsoft, an Illinois university, and even the government of Costa Rica. In this article we will talk about some of the ransomware methods that hackers tend to use. 

RaaS 

   RaaS ( Ransomware-as-a-Service) is a business model which enables threat actors to use already-developed tools to carry out attacks. This deal consists of two sides: the investor, who byes the services, and the provider, who develops and maintains the tools. Usually, the patterns that the actors use for their attacks differ from each other and are modified according to each company’s weak points.  

Double and Triple Extortion 

   The double extortion tactic is an increasingly popular type of ransomware attack which allows hackers to not only encrypt data, but also exfiltrate it. The malicious actors demand ransom. If the organization refuses, they can make the additional threat of making the data public and sell it to the highest bidder.  

If that wasn’t enough, in recent years a new tactic has surfaced, which is being referred to as “Triple Extortion”. In addition to the aforementioned types of blackmail, threat actors now use the targeted data to also blackmail third parties. These include business partners or healthcare patients. 

Spear Phishing 

   Generally speaking, phishing is a term that refers to the cyber-attack tactic of getting access to data by sending fraudulent e-mails  to victims and tricking them to click on links or send important information to the threat actor. The e-mails appear to have been sent by a trusted organization, so the victim has no idea that he is being used. 

   Spear phishing is a type of phishing executed in such a way that it targets a particular victim. To make the e-mail appear as legit as possible, the attacker refers to the victim by their name and includes information specific to them. This makes it harder for the target to tell it apart from an ordinary e-mail. From there, the formula regarding the ransomware is the same. 

Destructive Ransomware 

   Destructive malware is a malicious software which can destroy data or damage affected systems and make them inoperable. If we add the blackmail factor, then we will be talking about destructive ransomware. Some ways to damage a system is by erasing the master boot record or volume boot record. Destructive malware cases are growing dramatically, with a prime example being a 200% increase between the latter half of 2018 and the first half of 2019. 

Backdoor Capabilities 

   Another way that threat actors use to breach a system is by using the backdoors tactic. A backdoor is any method by which a user can get around normal security measures and gain access to the system. When this is done, everything is in order for them to do what they know best, namely stealing data and hijacking devices. This type of attack is very common and something organizations need to keep an eye for. 

Scareware

   The term scareware refers to a type of fake software that claims to have detected an issue on a device. It then asks the victim to pay in order to solve the problem. Some types of scareware lock the computer, while other fill the screen with pop-up alerts without really damaging any files.  

Conclusion

   Defending against ransomware is very important for your entire organization. In order to protect your company, use of security software is a step in the right direction. 

   Logstail.com, with the advanced systems and technologies helps you to have full control of your systems to prevent a threat or improve a weak point. Now you don’t have to be an engineer to set up and use a log management tool. You can turn your data into useful information easily and without many processes. You can increase the performance of your infrastructure or get notified of problems that may arise and take the appropriate actions. Sign-up for a free demo in order to realize Logstail’s Capabilities.  

   Logstail also offers a set of services required to effectively mitigate cyber-attacks. Rapid incident response and advisory, penetration testing and red team operations are designed to help our customers reduce cyber incidents. Contact us on sales@logstail.com to get a custom quote for your business or get free advice from our team of experienced security experts. 

 

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