Realities of ransomware in SA to be exposed at Sophos webinar

Johannesburg, 03 Dec 2021
Read time 2min 40sec
Pieter Nel, regional head of sales at Sophos.
Pieter Nel, regional head of sales at Sophos.

Aside from having to pay a ransom, some of the biggest concerns South African organisations have about ransomware are the compliance implications and loss of trust of their customers.

This is according to Pieter Nel, regional head of sales at Sophos, who was speaking ahead of the Sophos Realities of Ransomware webinar to be held next week.

Nel says ransomware attacks have picked up significantly in South Africa, even though most organisations are loath to disclose this. “We hear it from the market all the time – organisations are being attacked, and most of them are paying the ransoms,” he says. “Reputation matters, so they keep it quiet. Loss of trust is a loss of business and it’s more important than ever for them to defend their business during Covid times.”

The Sophos State of Ransomware Report 2021 found that 37% of respondents’ organisations were hit by ransomware in the last year. In South Africa, 24% of respondents said they had come under a ransomware attack in the past year. 54% that were hit by ransomware in the last year said the cybercriminals succeeded in encrypting their data in the most significant attack, 32% paid ransom to get their data back, and 96% of those whose data was encrypted got their data back in the most significant ransomware attack. However, on average, only 65% of the encrypted data was restored after the ransom was paid.

Nel says many companies are feeling very vulnerable as ransomware attacks become increasingly sophisticated and profitable. Ransomware attackers are such organised businesses now that they operate much like any sales-driven corporate: they will engage, give a deadline, potentially even negotiate, and close the opportunity. Ultimately, they win and make a profit.

“Cyber insurance is one measure many organisations are taking, but it has a lot of Ts and Cs attached to it, and I’m not sure it delivers true value, fast enough, in a ransomware attack,” he says. “When you get hit, there’s a panic stage, with all the stakeholders meeting in the war room wondering what to do. You feel alone, but there are vendors like Sophos who can help.”

Webinar: The realities of ransomware

What to do when every second counts

Date: 9 December 2021
Time: 09:00 (GMT+2)
Duration: 1 hour

Sophos, in partnership with ITWeb, will host a webinar on 9 December to outline what front line cyber security practitioners are witnessing in the battle against ransomware, how to protect your organisation from attack, and how to respond when every second counts after an attack. 

At this event, Sophos experts will elaborate on the latest Sophos Threat Report insights from SophosLabs and Sophos SecOps, with practical guidance on how to reduce ransomware risks and respond to an attack. 

For more information and to register for this event, go to

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