Threat Management, Security Strategy, Plan, Budget

Cash if you get ransomware on your machine

SentinelOne has announced a new money-back guarantee which will see customers being given financial compensation in the event of ransomware attacks on their networks.

SentinelOne's ‘cyber-threat protection guarantee' programme will provide its customers with US$ 1000 (£762)  per endpoint, or up to US$ 1 million (£762,000) per company should a ransomware infection occur while it's product is installed.

The company says this will secure customers from the financial stresses of a ransomware attack where SentinelOne is unable to block or remediate the effects.

The company offers what it calls “real-time protection powered by machine learning and intelligent automation” which they say makes them super confident in their product being able to protect against strains of malware such as Locky, CryptoLocker and Maktub.  

Through its behaviour-based detection engine coupled with automated mitigation and remediation technologies, SentinelOne says it also hopes to fight the rise in ransomware payouts. News agency Reuters reported back in April that ransomware victims paid out US$ 209 million (£160 million) in Q1 2016, compared to US$ 24 million (£18 million) for all of 2015.

It was put to SentinelOne that the move is primarily a marketing exercise, as payment does not ensure any greater security, just the perception that the product is more secure, but the response was that this guarantee was something tangible that others were not offering.

Furthermore, SentinelOne was asked if claiming money through the scheme would prevent claiming more money in damages through the courts. Tomer Weingarten, CEO and co-founder of SentinelOne told "You have the same right to do it - as with any other vendor - although we assume no other liability than what's defined and protected via the guarantee."

Jeremiah Grossman, chief of security strategy for SentinelOne told SC: “The security industry is undergoing a credibility crisis, with security vendors launching product after product without specific validation of their effectiveness. But we're headed for a major shift where security vendors will be required, not only by customers but by lawyers and insurers, to put their money where their mouth is.”

The announcement comes just as The Dutch National Police, Europol, Intel Security and Kaspersky Lab have joined forces to launch an initiative called No More Ransom, to spread the word about the threat of ransomware.

The new online portal is designed to inform the public about the dangers of ransomware and help victims recover their data without having to pay money to cyber-criminals. According to Kaspersky Lab, ransomware is claiming victims at at an alarming rate. The number of users attacked by crypto-ransomware rose by 550 percent, from 131,000 in 2014-2015 to 718,000 in 2015-2016.

It's also become a top priority for EU law enforcement: almost two-thirds of EU Member States are conducting investigations into this kind of malware.

Graeme Newman, chief innovation officer of CFC Underwriting told SC that: “Ransomware attacks have been rife within our customer base. Nearly 90% of our customer have had to claim because of a ransomware attack, and some have even gone under. This new scheme from SentinelOne should give customers both peace of mind and show a certain level of efficacy of their products, to show they believe it really will work.”

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