Threat Management, Malware, Ransomware

WannaCry’s silver lining: Greater public awareness for ransomware

Whether it was the catchy nickname, the fact the malware's first impact disrupted hospital operations or that the main stream media latched onto the subject, WannaCry opened the public's eyes to the world of ransomware.

A survey of 5,000 people by Carbon Black found that for 57 percent of those surveyed WannaCry was their first exposure so how ransomware works.

“While ransomware is certainly nothing new, consumers are now increasingly turning to businesses with questions about how they are protecting sensitive data,” the report stated.

Although no comparative data was provided, the survey found about 70 percent of those surveyed would leave their financial institution, health care provider or retailer if it was hit by a ransomware attack. With that noted, 70 percent said they trust their bank to protect their data, a figure that dips to 52 percent when it comes to trusting retailers.

WannaCry also forced people to consider their plan of action in case they were hit with ransomware. Fifty-two percent would pay the ransom with 12 percent willing to pay more than $500. Interestingly, people considered their financial data only slightly more important to protect than their photo collection, 42 percent to 41 percent. With medical records, phone and message data in the low single digits. 

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