Cyber threats are continually evolving, and data extortion is an area of growing concern, according to cyber insurer Beazley.
Today’s extortion incidents no longer only involve encrypted files. Instead, according to Beazley’s Cyber Services Snapshot, cybercriminals are threatening to expose that your data was stolen and seek payment to prevent this.
In double extortion, the threat actor encrypts and exports (or exfiltrates) data from a victim. Then, the criminal demands a ransom for a decryption key and the promise that they will delete the stolen data. However, the data may still find its way into the dark web for others to leverage.
Triple extortion follows the attack of double extortion, except the cybercriminal further pressures the victim. That pressure could come as denial of service attacks or threats to contact individuals whose details are in the stolen data.
Beazley’s Cyber Services team says the double extortion method happened in two out of every three extortion incidents it saw in Q1 of 2022.
“This is an increasingly complex landscape and it’s essential that organizations understand the threats and resulting vulnerabilities of these new threat vectors,” Raf Sanchez, Beazley’s global head of cyber services, said in a statement.
Data exfiltration cases dropped in the first quarter, according to Beazley’s data. However, the number of cyber extortion incidents involving data exfiltration has remained elevated since Q2 2020.
When defending data, multi-factor authentication (MFA) is essential. Unfortunately, there are more and less secure forms of MFA, and attackers are increasingly using techniques like social engineering to get around protections.
According to Beazley, forms of MFA considered more secure include push notifications, time-based one-time passwords (TOTP), Open Authorization (OAuth) tokens, and authenticator apps, among others.
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