The city of Baltimore's ransomware outbreak - $18 million in costs and counting - led to many crypto-locked files being lost forever, because no IT policy mandated centralized file backups. But effective IT solutions exist to help solve this challenge, provided they're deployed in advance of an attack.
Ahead of the release of Edward Snowden's memoirs chronicling his decision to bring illegal "big data" domestic U.S. surveillance programs to light, a former NSA intelligence specialist points out that the U.S. still lacks a whistleblowing law to protect intelligence workers who spot illegal activity.
Ransomware-wielding attackers treat infecting endpoints as a business and put customer relationship management principles to work, says Bill Siegel, CEO of ransomware incident response firm Coveware. He notes criminals "go after the low-hanging fruit because it's cheap and the conversion rate is high."
Earlier this year, intruders probed weaknesses in the network firewalls of a U.S. power utility to attempt a distributed denial-of-service attack, but there was no disruption in electricity service, according a recently released report. The incident illustrates potential weaknesses in the power grid.
Three weeks after a ransomware attack slammed 22 Texas municipalities' systems, state officials say more than half of the cities have returned to normal operations and the rest have advanced to system restoration. Meanwhile, officials have shared lessons learned for managed service providers and customers.
The mayor of New Bedford, Massachusetts, took the unusual step this week of holding a press conference to describe a recent ransomware attack and explain why the city decided not to pay the $5.3 million ransom that was demanded.
Do criminal organizations prefer to target organizations that hold cyber insurance policies? A ProPublica report suggests that because cyber insurance policyholders are more likely to pay ransoms, they're a more frequent target. But some cybersecurity experts have expressed skepticism.
Ransomware-wielding attackers continue to target not just big businesses and large government agencies, but increasingly their smaller counterparts too. In Texas, officials say a campaign tied to a "single threat actor" infected 22 local government agencies on Friday.
With the GandCrab ransomware-as-service gang promising to retire - and free decryptors now aiding victims - rival Sodinokibi has already stepped into the void, security experts warn. Driven also by attackers wielding Ryuk, Dharma and Phobos, ransom payments by victims have been surging.
The debate over whether the U.S. government should have the right to force weak crypto on Americans has returned. Here's what hasn't changed since the last time: mathematics and the choice between strong crypto protecting us or weak encryption - aka backdoors - imperiling us all.