Industry research has shown that the number of phishing emails containing ransomware grew to 97 percent in the third quarter of 2016, up from 92 percent in Q1.
Ransomware has been making headlines this year as multiple healthcare organisations have been targeted by cybercriminals demanding cash for data.
The research, undertaken by PhishMe, a human phishing defence solutions vendor said that Locky encryption remained at the forefront of ransomware. This malware has introduced a number of techniques for detection resistance while it infects systems.
The company’s malware review pinpointed three trends detected earlier this year that have come to fruition.
The first is that Locky is still the dominant malware on the ransomware scene because of its adaptability and longevity.
Secondly, the proportion of analysed phishing e-mails delivering some form of ransomware has increased to 97.25 percent.
Lastly, PhishMe as detected a rise in deployment of quiet, remote-access Trojan like jRAT. This suggests that the intention is for these threats are to remain in the victims’’ systems for an extended period.
The findings were based on 689 malware analyses. The rise in
phishing emails is largely due to the deployment of Locky encryption ransomware
“Locky will be remembered alongside 2013’s CryptoLocker as a top-tier ransomware tool that fundamentally altered the way security professionals view the threat landscape,” said PhishMe. “Not only does Locky distribution dwarf all other malware from 2016, it towers above all other ransomware varieties. Our research has shown that the quarter-over-quarter number of analyses has been on a steady increase since the malware’s introduction at the beginning of 2016. Thanks to its adaptability, it’s showing no signs of slowing down.”
Locky was the most commonly identified file type during Q3 with threat features evolving the ransomware to ensure the efficacy of the malware’s delivery.
Source: Healthcare IT News
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