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Ransomware: Two-thirds of Aussie businesses would pay up, new survey finds

A recent global survey has found that over 60 per cent of Australian businesses would pay a ransom demand following a successful ransomware attack.

user icon David Hollingworth
Tue, 09 May 2023
Ransomware: Two-thirds of Aussie businesses would pay up, new survey finds
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The survey, carried out by security company Rubrik, polled 1,600 chief information officers and chief information security officers, alongside vice-presidents and directors of IT and security, in Australia, the US, the UK, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Japan, Singapore, and India.

But possibly more alarming than business intentions for the future, 72 per cent of Australian respondents said they have paid a ransom in the past. However, despite paying, only 14 per cent of organisations were able to successfully recover their data despite paying a ransom.

And, increasingly, threat actors are targeting data backups as well.


“Organisations are struggling to keep their heads above water against the rising tide of cyber attacks,” said Scott Magill, A/NZ managing director at Rubrik, in an announcement. “Almost every Australian respondent (98 per cent) had seen malicious actors attempt to impact their data backups during a cyber attack. Alarmingly, 87 per cent said the attackers were at least partially successful in these attempts.”

This compares poorly with the global average — 90 per cent of companies have seen actors addressing their backups, with 73 per cent being somewhat successful.

The survey also found that Australian organisations reported an average of 46 attempted cyber attacks in the past 12 months alone. Eighty-two per cent of respondents said they were concerned over the challenge of maintaining business continuity in such a fast-paced attack environment.

“In a bid to turn the tables, Australian businesses are looking to bolster their troops, whether through artificial intelligence or hiring security personnel,” Magill said. “While 52 per cent reported increased interest in supporting security teams with AI and 49 per cent sought to hire additional staff, 38 per cent said a lack of specialised IT talent impacted these efforts.”

Disappointingly, and despite the clear evidence that stronger responses are needed, only 53 per cent of Australian businesses have reviewed or even developed an incident response plan, while only 58 per cent have tested their backup and recovery regimes.

“In the current era of cyber security, the best outcome is ensuring cyber resilience,” said Steven Stone, head of Rubrik Zero Labs. “Incidents are inevitable, so it’s critical to reduce the risk before a response is needed, and — at all costs — protect the crown jewel: the data.”

You can read the full report here.

David Hollingworth

David Hollingworth

David Hollingworth has been writing about technology for over 20 years, and has worked for a range of print and online titles in his career. He is enjoying getting to grips with cyber security, especially when it lets him talk about Lego.

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