Ransomware is understood as one of the most fast-evolving kinds of malicious software that threatens businesses and networked Medias by compromising a technical system, encrypting its data and displaying a ransom note for payment to companies demanding a huge sum of money in return for decryption keys. Once systems are accessed by hacker groups, not only do companies not have access to their files for a period of time, but they also suffer from the risk of damages that are already underway. This might come across as a problem for just said business, however, the problem goes much beyond that and affects all public institutions, customers and clientele. This results in loss of sales, unhappy customers, huge fines, mitigation expenses and damage to company reputation. This translated to better words takes the form of ‘an attack on our company is an attack on all of us.’
Recently on March 1, 2019, the city of Atlanta, Georgia was hit with a ransomware attack that affected their internal systems and required a huge sum of money in bitcoin to be paid to cyber-criminals to restore access to their IT systems. Now the distress is already very massive, but again there is never any security as to whether paying a ransom would get the hackers to send decryption keys to owners. This means with whatever businesses have had to put to risk, this kind of defense may not be the most beneficial as they may or may not restore their files and even if they do, it would take a long period of time to successfully decrypt them. At times, when there is no hope and hackers back away after receiving payments, many people have to start afresh and that means a great deal of stress as they may have lost say, for example, 17 years of hard work in getting their company, their position and their reputation to where it is in this period. Georgia officials are working day and night, round the clock to ensure all their systems are back up and running. It is quite clear; this attack has deeply affected the County and resulted in great loss and inconvenience.
Nobody feels the need to replace their device if it hasn’t been wrecked, but they still ensure all of its software/hardware is up to date and working fine and obviously, when damage occurs at some cost, they can still work with the current device having its minor problems fixed. Similarly, a kind of suggestion would be for all businesses to ensure their security is up to date to prevent any kind of breach that may result in huge losses. A ransomware attack can affect individuals too so it’s important to be proactive and educated on cybersecurity. Had the county’s security been protected with no easy access to the public, this attack may never have occurred. However, dealing with hackers and negotiating or incurring losses and starting all over again piece by piece is something that is still being debated upon.