Dennis Underwood
Published on
July 15, 2022

Downtime After Ransomware: The Silent Killer

In this article we will be discussing the biggest costs during ransomware attacks - not the ransom! We will look at concrete numbers and ratios to adapt into your risk management budgets and projections and how Cyber Crucible, Inc.' s post attack and preventative technologies' value is revenue and cost aligned. Check it out; I'm seriously considering asking her to write an article walking us through the Excel spreadsheets she used to come up with these numbers for your own use.

Every 11 seconds, a new organization falls victim to ransomware. When we think of ransomware, we immediately think of the cost associated with an attack; however, the ransom to be paid is only a fraction of the cost compared to the real issue: downtime.

Ransomware prevention using Ransomware Rewind is the most cost effective strategy, and we give you some of those metrics at the end of this blog post.

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Let's pretend you do not have our prevention in place, and look at a scenario where a ransomware attack has occurred. When it comes to ransomware without prevention, businesses have two choices: spend the time necessary in order to recover files from backups, or negotiate with criminals for a buggy decryptor. Neither is a good option, but with the new penalties issued by the government for negotiating with cyber terrorists, the first is really the only viable option… but there’s one problem: it’s still going to break the bank.

16 days. That’s the average amount of time it takes for an organization to get back to being fully operational after a ransomware attack.

For example, healthcare organizations, which are among the most vulnerable for being hit, pay out over $8,851 per minute of downtime, resulting in millions of dollars lost, and not to mention, leaving patient care at risk.

The same goes for industries such as financial services and manufacturing -- each of these industries are also at high risk for being attacked, resulting in millions of dollars lost after an attack.

By 2021, ransomware losses are likely to exceed $20 billion. While much of this total is due to lost revenues, organizations should also be weary of the impact that downtime may have on costs associated with other business operations and contracts, such as service level agreements. Service level agreements guarantee your customers either a certain level of availability or a certain quality of service. Check your SLA violation penalties, as the penalties may involve payment of fees or contract cancellation.

Whether your organization has made guarantees surrounding network uptime or service quality, it’s important to consider that you may be shelling out hefty penalties during a ransomware attack if your business is unable to fulfill the terms of the agreement, adding to the millions of dollars in lost revenues.

In addition to violating terms of SLAs, another issue to consider is that of your competitors. The longer your operations are at a stand-still, the more of an opportunity there is for your customers to find your products or services elsewhere, or worse yet, it gives your competitors the opportunity to exploit your weaknesses during an attack, painting your company as unreliable. While this is more of a long-term cost, it is a cost nonetheless that will only add to the millions of dollars lost during recovery.

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So, what do we do about all of this doom-and-gloom? With over 75% of ransomware victims having the latest and greatest endpoint protection methods installed, what else is there to do other than sit and wait for an attack to occur? Well, that’s where we at Cyber Crucible have been proactive. In order to defeat ransomware, you need a ransomware-specific tool… so, how does it work? Let's look at the economics of our ransomware prevention.

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Using our custom decryptor is an excellent option for recovery if you haven't already been using our prevention product. While it is a more costly option than prevention, it is up to 5,000 times faster than the standard recovery procedures of paying ransoms or recovering from backups. This leads to a 40% reduced recovery time in comparison to these standard methods. However, prevention with Ransomware Rewind is preferred.

Ransomware Rewind is the first tool designed specifically to prevent ransomware attacks by using a crypto-behavioral detection model. It doesn’t rely on backups, and because it focuses on prevention, there is no downtime whatsoever. With Ransomware Rewind, we’ve been able to effectively reduce recovery costs by over 99+%, saving organizations millions of dollars per attack with recovery happening in milliseconds, not in weeks or months. You keep your money, your customers, and your reputation -- let us handle the rest!

But wait -- what about cyber liability insurance? Where does that fit into all of this? Don't worry -- we'll tackle that topic in our next blog post. Keep an eye out!

About the author
Dennis Underwood

Dennis Underwood is a veteran, cybersecurity leader, inventor, and entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience. He is an expert at cryptography, intrusion discovery and analysis, having discovered multiple previously unreported intrusions to clients throughout his career. Currently, he is leading a team of like-minded experts delivering next generation intrusion discovery and ransomware response automation tools to consumers.

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