November 10, 2022

How to Protect Against Ransomware-as-a-Service Attacks

Recent research has suggested that annual revenue for cybercriminals leveraging the Ransomware attack vector is around $1 billion.

So it's no surprise that some criminal groups have started monetizing the vector further by offering Ransomware-as-a-Service options to other criminals.

In this blog, we'll explore Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) in more detail. We'll also uncover some of the major organizations utilizing the technology and discuss how you can stay protected against this growing cyber threat.

What is Ransomware-as-a-Service?

RaaS is a type of malware that allows attackers to encrypt a victim's data and demand a ransom to decrypt it—typically delivered through an organizational subscription model.

Attackers buying the service are provided with the necessary tools and infrastructure to deploy sophisticated ransomware. These illegitimate enterprises operate with a high level of organization. An entire Ransomware-as-a-Service business model offer services for subscribers, including elements like customer support, payment processing, and marketing.

The prevalence of RaaS utilities means that it’s now the common weapon of choice for tech-savvy criminal groups. Lesser technical criminals can now also pay to use their services to carry out complex attacks without investing in their own IT infrastructure.

Who are the major organizations in the RaaS field?

The major organizations or 'families' in the field of RaaS have developed over the last couple of years. Originally, the infamous Sodinokibi family was responsible for 33% of all attacks in 2020.

However, through 2022, that notorious name has been overtaken by three others. Conti, LockBit, and BlackCat all enjoyed bumper starts to the year, as nearly 400 RaaS attacks were attributed to this trio in Q1 alone.

Although there has been a recent period of upheaval in the RaaS market the former of those three names was disbanded in June due to the ContiLeaks incident, RAAS continues to grow and thrive.

5 ways to stay protected against RaaS attacks

Staying ahead of the bad actors and remaining safe from cyberattacks is a constant worry for large and small businesses. But there are some steps you can take to ensure you remain as protected as possible.

  1. Educate staff
  2. Back-up data
  3. Ensure your systems are updated
  4. Install EDR safeguards
  5. Get comprehensive cyber insurance

Educate staff

On average, a business gets attacked by Ransomware approximately every 40 seconds. The leading attack access vector remains email via Phishing attacks. It's important to ensure that staff and direct response teams are fully trained on what to look out for when it comes to identifying Phishing emails.

Back-up data

Since the main prize for Ransomware attacks is data, you should ensure any sensitive information is backed up in an off-site location or anywhere that is not connected to your main network. This will ensure damage limitation from any potential attacks. Data back-ups should be conducted regularly to keep you as up-to-date as possible.

Ensure systems are kept up-to-date

Lapsed securities and outdated or end-of-life applications are other common targets for RaaS attacks. Stay across your system updates as any lapses in this area could result in vulnerabilities. Likewise, any apps that have now become obsolete should be terminated across all business endpoints and tech.

Install EDR

EDR or Endpoint Detection and Response technology is also imperative, especially if (like many businesses post-Covid) you operate a home-based or hybrid workforce. This security solution watches over endpoints such as smartphones, laptops, desktops, and tablets to detect and contain threats in real-time.

Get insurance coverage

The above four points are all crucial for ensuring the cyber resiliency of your business or clients. But, for the most secure coverage, there's nothing better than adding robust cyber insurance to your list of defenses.

Getting cyber insurance with 1Fort is perfect for getting this comprehensive coverage. Combining best-in-class security gap analysis with insurance, 1Fort can help both businesses and their insurance brokers get the best coverage ppossible.

Final Thoughts

The staggering growth of ransomware attacks and the added complexity of the overall RaaS landscape can be a looming concern for businesses of all shapes and sizes.

But with the proper protections in place and appropriate staff education opportunities made available.

If you're an insurance broker selling cyber insurance, get in contact with 1Fort today to discuss how our solution can bolster your client's insurance readiness and get them better coverage. Schedule a demo today.