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Crypto-ransomware attacks increased by 1.54 percent in the Philippines

Adrian M. Reodique | July 7, 2016
The country experienced 10,414 crypto-ransomware attacks from April 2015 to March 2016.

The Philippines experienced 10,414 crypto-ransomware attacks from April 2015 to March 2016, a 1.54 percent increase from the same period last year, according to security company Kaspersky Lab.

Out of all the users who were attacked with any kind of ransomware, 32.68 percent of them were hit with crypto-ransomware during the April 2015 to March 2016 period, a 4.04 percent jump from the same period last year.

Crypto-ransomware encrypts the files of the users and stops them from accessing the documents until a certain amount of ransom is paid. 

"These figures uncover the reality that the threat of crypto-ransomware exists not only in developed countries but also in emerging nations like the Philippines. Kaspersky Lab strongly suggests not to pay the ransom but most of all, every Filipino must be cyber-savvy enough to avoid this kind of stealthy and costly threat. Always remember that prevention is better than cure, even in cybersecurity," said Anthony Chua, Territory Channel Manager for the Philippines and Singapore at Kaspersky Lab Southeast Asia, in a press release.

Globally, the number of users attacked with crypto-ransomware has soared from 131,111 in April 2014-March 2015 to 718,536 between April 2015 and March 2016.  Germany, Italy, and the United States topped the list with highest percentage of users attacked with crypto-ransomware.

"The biggest problem with crypto-ransomware today is that sometimes the only way to get the encrypted data back is to pay the criminals, and victims tend to pay. That brings a lot of money into the underground ecosystem that has grown up around this malware, and as a result we are seeing new cryptors appear almost daily," said Fedor Sinitsyn, Senior Malware Analyst at Kaspersky Lab.

"Companies and regular users can protect themselves by implementing regular backups, using a proven security solution and keeping themselves informed about current cybersecurity risks. The ransomware business model seems to be profitable and safe for criminals, and the security industry and users can change that just by implementing these basic measures," Sinitsyn continued.

In addition, Kaspersky Lab said the consumers should always keep the software on their PC updated and keep an eye when downloading files from the web especially those from untrusted sources.

For businesses, Kaspersky Lab suggested to undertake regular patch management and educate their employees.


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