Kaspersky Confirms Ransomware Attacks on Municipal Institutions Increased by 60%

New findings by research firm Kaspersky paint a worrisome outlook. Dozens of municipal institutions have dealt with ransomware attacks throughout 2019.

The rise of malware and ransomware attacks has been well documented in recent years. 

The Ransomware Industry Keeps Growing

One would expect institutions and corporations to smarten up after so many years.

That is not necessarily the case, according to a new Kaspersky report. 

Over 170 different municipal institutions have suffered from massive malware attacks throughout 2019. 

Compared to similar research conducted in 2018, that represents a 60% increase year-over-year

The choice for smaller institutions is not entirely surprising.

While these municipal organizations can’t pay large sums of bitcoin as ransom, they are more willing to pay smaller sums regardless. 

For a smaller company, losing data or not having access to crucial systems is very problematic.

Three different ransomware families have been identified throughout 2019. 

Ryuk, Purga, and Stop appear to be the most common ransomware threats this year, and possibly during early 2020.

Regardless of which attack vector is used, paying the ransom demand is never the answer. 

Meeting the criminals’ demand is a short-term solution, yet one that further encourages criminals active in this industry.

One also has to keep in mind a successful malware attack can spell future disaster.

If one weakness is found in key infrastructure, the rest of the network is compromised as well.

That could allow for future attacks to take place, and even more financial damage to occur.