Zerto has announced the findings of a major new ransomware study, revealing that gaps in readiness are seriously impacting the ability of many organizations to manage and recover from attacks. The research also underlines the increased risk to mitigation strategies presented by widespread skills shortages and over-reliance on internal resources. This indicates that, while organizations recognise that one of the best protections against a ransomware attack is the ability to recover from it, many are still struggling to counteract ransomware when prevention has failed.
The study, conducted by ESG, co-sponsored by Zerto and published in a new e-book, ‘The Long Road Ahead to Ransomware Preparedness’, shows that ransomware attack frequency and impact remain a major concern. In fact, nearly three-quarters of organizations experiencing ransomware attacks in the past 12 months (73 percent of respondents in total) were negatively impacted.
Even within the most advanced organizations (rated by ESG to be ‘Leaders’ in ransomware preparedness), 75 percent suffered operational disruption, calling into question how complete ransomware recovery strategies are even for those considered the most prepared. The threat is also proving to compound itself for victims. 61 percent of those who paid a ransom were then subjected to further extortion attempts resulting in extra payments being made on top of initial sums.
The research further underlines the risks associated with making ransom payments, with only 14 percent of respondents getting 100 percent of their data back even after acceding to a ransom demand. This illustrates that paying a ransom is no guarantee to getting a business completely back online.
Despite the volume and impact of attacks, nearly half of survey respondents (45 percent) are struggling with skills issues that will help them respond to a ransomware attack. In particular, they report skills and training gaps within certain areas of their teams and external contractors/vendors, while others are severely lacking critical people and skills.
ESG surveyed 620 qualified respondents in North America and Western Europe between December 2021 and January 2022.