Broker Check

Ransomware - It's Not Just About Computers

May 10, 2021

If anyone still thinks a ransomware attack - or cyber attacks in general - is just about shutting down a computer network, the Colonial Pipeline attack shows what really is at risk.

As cyber expert Steve King puts it, Colonial is not a pipeline, it's THE pipeline - the main source of fuel for the eastern United States. Whoever is responsible - as of now no one including nation states is ruled out - planned this attack for maximum disruption.

The attack is being addressed at the highest levels of government, including the president and his cabinet. Even if operations are quickly restored, similar attacks are certain to follow.

Dealing with ransomware is not solved by paying a ransom. Setting aside that payment does not always lead to data restoration, payment enables new activity by criminals, terrorists and/or hostile nations. Payment may violate laws or regulations. In France, AXA Insurance will no longer cover ransom payments, and it may only be a matter of time before American insurers follow suit.

The best way to deal with ransomware is increased cyber security, backing up data and a response plan to restore operations as quickly as [possible.