Nearly all information security
professionals surveyed at organizations in Saudi Arabia reported being affected by ransomware over the past year, according to Cyber Edge
. Three-quarters of information security professionals in Turkey reported being affected by ransomware as well. While ransomware
is not the most common type of cyberattack, when executed expertly the attacks can be particularly harmful, keeping company data hostage or demanding payments to retrieve compromised information. The FBI considers the attack to be a top cybersecurity threat.
Sophisticated ransomware attacks are increasingly becoming an issue, with both the number of attacks and payments one the rise in the first part of 2019. Older ransomware attacks demanded that those affected mail physical checks, a far cry from the more sophisticated attacks today. Ransomware hackers demand cryptocurrency payouts to decrypt hacked data and files. If victims do not comply, they run the risk of having their files and data deleted. Encrypted information is notoriously hard to unlock, making this method of extortion particularly successful for cybercriminals.