Ransomware, one of the most flourishing and lucrative attack forms, generally demands payment in BitCoin due to its inherent anonymity and reliability—both found in the blockchain ledger. Since it seems to work well for attackers, why aren’t companies just using blockchain to exchange sensitive information—or money? Blockchain turns out to be prohibitively expensive, resource-intensive, or slow. The technology behind it is still relatively unrefined for large-scale use, so it works fine for a single user making demands but is abysmal at handling the volume being pushed around by any corporation worth ransoming. The strongest measure to combat ransomware is a solid backup scheme, which any company worth its BitCoin should have in place anyway.
Is there a way to strike back?
Revenge hacking is illegal, but some government personnel are fighting to allow it. Even when attackers are traced, more often than not they are behind similar security, using a third-party’s computer, are masked by easily acquired technology, so retaliating is not as black and white as one might imagine. On top of that, exposing hackers comes with its own risks.
While retribution may sound sweet, a more realistic approach includes (in addition to sound backups, mentioned above) four key techniques: strong authentication, encryption, digital signatures, and regular key management. Developments in existing and emerging tech shows promise: hardware authentication, deep learning, and cloud technology. You may not be able to avenge your lost data, but you can prevent it from ever being stolen in the future in the first place—and that’s even better.
Want to learn more about ransomware? Check out our webinar on protecting your organization against ransomware!