Ransomware-as-a-Service threats to rise in 2021

A recent survey from McAfee revealed that cyberattacks shifted towards fewer, customized Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) campaigns targeting larger, more lucrative organizations in 2021.

Indeed, it was found out that Ransomware decreased by 50% in Q1 as cyberattacks started to focus on fewer, larger targets with unique samples. By launching these kinds of unique attacks, RaaS affiliate networks are then allowing adversaries to minimize the risk of detection by large organizations’ cyber defences as well as paralyze and extort them for large ransomware payments.

Moreover, the report noted a 117% surge in the spread of cryptocurrency-generating coin mining malware, which is due to a sharp spike in 64-bit CoinMiner applications. Indeed, Coin Miner malware is reported to infect compromised systems and silently produces cryptocurrency using those systems’ computing capacity for the criminals that designed and launched such campaigns.

This gives an advantage to cybercriminals as there is zero interaction required from the perpetrator nor the victim, and the victims may never become aware that their system is creating monetary value for criminals.

It was also showcased that the first quarter of 2021 witnessed around 688 new malware threats per minute, an increase of 40 threats per minute over Q4 2020. Besides, a 54% increase in publicly reported cyber incidents targeting the technology sector was reported during the first quarter of 2021.