Data protection in an era of continuous attacks

Malware attacks are increasing in sophistication.
Read time 2min 50sec
Malware attacks are increasing in sophistication.

Cyber attacks have increased in frequency, severity and sophistication. The FBI estimates that there are well over 4 000 attacks per day in the US alone - a 300% increase over 2015, where 1 000 ransomware attacks were seen on a daily basis.

"Many of our customers tell us that they are under continuous attack," says Reduxio's chief marketing and corporate strategy officer Mike Grandinetti. "We are now seeing globally coordinated attacks by hostile foreign governments. For example, US Intelligence has established with 100% certainty that the highly publicised WannaCry virus, which took down Honda, Maersk, FedEx and the UK NHS, was perpetrated by the rogue government of North Korea."

Shutting down critical services

These attacks cost each of these global brands hundreds of millions of dollars, and in the case of the NHS, shut down critical health care services for the people of the UK for an extended period of time, leaving countless NHS patients facing delays for crucial operations, he adds.

Grandinetti says given the release of a hacked NSA toolkit, virtually anybody can easily become a hacker and carry out a ransomware attack. "The number of teenagers who use this as a way to earn beer and pizza money, as opposed to their old job of flipping burgers or delivering pizza for Domino's, has grown dramatically in the last year."

More and more, he says, even when organisations do decide to pay ransom, they still do not get access to their data, either because the data has been corrupted, or the cyber crooks are particularly devious, and come back for a second payment, now that the organisation has proven willing to cough up.

'It won't happen to me'

One of the biggest dangers for businesses, he says, is the belief that it won't happen to them. "Nothing could be further from the truth. Even small hospitals and school systems get compromised."

The second danger, says Grandinetti, is over-investing in perimeter security at the expense of actual near zero recovery point objective (RPO) and recovery time objective (RTO) data recovery solutions. "It's not a matter of if, but when, they will be compromised. If the NSA and the CIA can be hacked, then anyone can."

Data protection

According to Grandinetti, malware attacks are also increasing in sophistication. "They now can quickly encrypt all backups, making it that much more critical that users and organisations have a bullet-proof data recovery plan in place."

This is why when incidents like ransomware and malware attacks occur, it is crucial to have a platform in place that is equipped with data protection. "Reduxio, for example, does not need an incident response plan because the data that has been stored on its unified primary and secondary data storage with built-in data protection so it is unable to be encrypted or corrupted."

Since the data is hashed and indexed, it cannot be affected by such attacks. Therefore, users experience near zero RPO and RTO.

Kirsten Doyle
ITWeb contributor.

Kirsten Doyle is ITWeb contributor.

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