Last financial year, the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) received almost 500 ransomware cybercrime reports. This was an increase of almost 15% from the previous financial year.

Ransomware is malicious software that makes data or computer systems unusable until the victim makes a payment, often in the form of hard-to-trace cryptocurrencies.

Cybercriminals will send ransom demands to restore files after gaining illicit access to servers and encrypting data. There have also been reports of ransomware locking file or system access after users download pirated software. Businesses affected by ransomware can experience severe disruption and downtime. They can also incur significant financial and reputational cost.

Investing in preventative cyber security measures is often a more cost effective and reliable way to prevent ransomware attacks, such as keeping regular offline backups of critical data and patching known security vulnerabilities.

The following ACSC learning resources can help you and your business learn how to protect important information and data against ransomware, including: