Ransomware: The Top Security Concern Among IT Pros for 2017


Unfortunately, ransomware isn’t going anywhere. In fact, we predict the cases to only increase in the upcoming year, and the IT pros agree.

We recently conducted a poll among IT professionals within the Spiceworks community asking what their organizations’ top security concern is going into 2017. With over 70 respondents to the poll, the majority security concern for 2017 is, by no surprise, ransomware at 41%. Looking back when the war on ransomware first came to light, it’s startling to see the drastic increase in payout by cyber crime victims from 2015, now, and where we could potentially be in 2017.

A recent article by ZD Net reported cyber crime victims paid out approximately $24 million to criminals distributing ransomware in 2015, and the first quarter of 2016 came to a total of $209 million in payouts to ransoms associated with ransomware. By year end, the total is set to reach at least $1 billion in cyber crime payments.

It’s clear ransomware can be financially crippling to organizations, as well as the common user. However, there are other cyber threats IT professionals fear may take a more dominant toll on the infrastructure this year compared to the past. Another major concern noted in the poll is the expected increase in phishing scams (39%). This is especially concerning, because according to a study put out by CSO Online earlier this year, 93% of all phishing scams contain some sort of ransomware encryption. All-in-all, these major concerns and the protection from these threats comes down to the security infrastructure of an organization or the anti-virus a consumer has in place.

So, what does this mean for organizations or consumers looking for protection against these types of threats? The answer should lie in detection rates. With the expected increase in cyber threats like ransomware and phishing scams in the year to come, it’s important to look into the solutions that are most effective with these types of potential infections. In a recent blog post written by CEO Rob Cheng, Rob discusses the importance of detection rates and how this could potentially benefit the technology behind security solution vendors, as well as the organizations utilizing these security solutions. When it comes to detection rates and testing, it’s important to understand how the solution is responding to the potential infections and the rate at which it is detecting the threats. Although there currently is no standard measurement for detection rates of security software, public testing houses live AV Comparative, Virus Bulletin, and AV Test are some of those that are dedicated to testing security software and providing the metrics behind the products’ functionality.  With their help and research, organizations and users are better equip with the knowledge of the security solution that is most effective.

To see our most recent results for AV Comparative and Virus Bulletin, please see below:

AV Comparative

Virus Bulletin

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