Intelligent CIO Middle East Issue 72 | Page 82

Key issues are those such as the impact of pandemic and people working more remotely , in less secure environments .
David Higgins , EMEA Technical Director at CyberArk

Ransomware : Why least privilege is key for prevention

Ransomware is universally recognised as one of the top risks that organisations are facing today , with attackers exploiting fears and uncertainty around COVID-19 to boost their rate of success . David Higgins , EMEA Technical Director at CyberArk , tells us which tools and solutions organisations should consider investing in to protect themselves and highlights the best practice approach for protecting against ransomware attacks .


Where does ransomware sit within the modern threat landscape ?
Within cyber , it ’ s got to be up there as one of the top risks that organisations are tracking . You only have to look at the importance that the US government , for example , has recently put on ransomware through its mission statements to see how prominently it is being recognised , not just within the west but further afield globally .
What are the different types of ransomware and how do they impact organisations ?
There are four categories of ransomware and all focus on impacting the ‘ CIA ’ triangle – confidentiality , integrity , or availability of data .
The first type is scareware , where victims get a pop-up on their screen stating there are vulnerabilities on their machine and they need to click on a link to pay for the software to fix the vulnerabilities . It scares people into paying for something they really don ’ t need .
But it ’ s the other three categories that are causing problems these days .
First is crypto , which is where the ransomware will go out and encrypt data and then hold the organisation to ransom in order to retrieve the encryption key .
Another variant , very similar in terms of its impact , is a locker variant ransomware which will lock out a system . Rather than encrypting data , it locks out a device and won ’ t allow access until the attacker is paid .
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