According to Proofpoint’s newest Quarterly Threat Report, Q4 2018, the threat of Ransomware did decline at the end of 2018, but has opened the door for out-right cyber extortion.
Extortion is an age-old crime that has found its way into the cyber world. This threat continues to gain traction as a multi-million-dollar criminal industry. The newest trend is in the form of “sextortion,” in which a cyber-criminal threatens to reveal compromising information (i.e. photos, videos or visits to questionable websites) if the victim does not pay a fee. They may even claim to have “evidence” of compromising activities. These emails generally do not contain malware or a malicious link and rely solely on fear, emotion and the human factor to trick victims into paying.
As the threat of cyber extortion continues to grow, staying one step ahead is your best recourse in combating this ever-increasing threat. Addressing your organizations’ vulnerabilities, developing appropriate policies and procedures, using up-to-date technology to secure your networks and securing the right insurance coverage are integral parts in your risk management arsenal.
For more information on cyber insurance, and how it can help protect your organization, please contact Hawley & Associates at www.hawleyandassociates.com.