While it is tradition to begin the new year on an optimistic note, from a cyber security perspective only criminals are looking forward to a happy new year. By all indications, in 2017 cybercrime will continue to escalate at an alarming pace.
Cybercrime has become big business. An August 2016 Osterman research survey revealed that 39 per cent of respondent organizations were impacted by ransomware in the preceding twelve months. In the United States, nearly one-third of victims faced data ransom demands of US $500 or less, likely the result of mass automated infection techniques, however, some targeted ransomware demands exceeded US$10,000.
Individuals, corporations, hospitals, schools, governments, and law enforcement agencies have all been victimized. The FBI estimated cybercriminals collected $209 million in the first quarter of 2016, suggesting that ransomware is now a $1 billion per year crime.
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