4 min read  | Ransomware

Who does ransomware target?

Here’s the short answer: everyone. If your organisation is of any size whatsoever, you are probably a ransomware target. This flies in the face of one of the common myths we hear when we’re talking to businesses. It’s not uncommon for people to believe that ransomware is just a problem for big banks, giant multinational enterprises and other big targets. 

And this is partly true! Most ransomware attacks happen in three sectors: finance, utilities and retail. But this doesn’t mean that other sectors are safe. In fact, essentially any business that depends on IT systems is vulnerable to ransomware attacks. 

Download: Four ransomware myths you need to stop believing

Example: schools and hospitals

The medical sector is a prominent example. In 2021, 42% of healthcare providers surveyed said they had had a ransomware attack in the last two years.  Even though hospitals don’t manage people’s finances the way a bank does, they do have access to highly personal information – as well as a high level of dependence on IT systems.  

If the MRI machine goes down because of a ransomware attack, there are going to be a lot of flow-on effects. Treatment will be delayed, and if it’s a for-profit hospital, a significant (and capital-intensive) source of revenue is offline.  

Schools are another growing example (as of 2022). In early 2022, schools in the US reported that ransomware attacks were growing. This doesn’t make sense on the face of things, as schools don’t handle much by the way of finances or personal information (relative to, say, a bank).  

But if you scratch the surface, the answer becomes clear: schools, already reliant on technology, became even more reliant on technology during the COVID-19 pandemic. This reliance creates vulnerability, and vulnerability creates opportunity for ransomware attackers.  


Nobody is safe

The examples go on and on. Here in Australia, logistics company Toll Group suffered two ransomware attacks in the space of one year. Melbourne area Stonnington City Council was using pen and paper to do things like building consent applications after a ransomware attack brought their systems down. And the list goes on. 


Nobody is safe

Bottom line: if you use IT, you’re a target. And if you’re a target, you need to protect yourself. Find out more about ransomware – including more details on Toll Group and Stonnington City Council – by reading our guide: Four ransomware myths that you need to stop believing. Download the free guide today.  


Blog_Assets Download_Four ransomware myths-1

> Learn more about our solution to ransomware attack