Ransomware targets your red-letter dates

 
Ransomware+red-letter+date.jpeg

In late September an increase of ransomware attacks on professional services peaked our interest. While professional service firms such as law firms and CPA firms are always a prime target, the rotation into this industry from healthcare and financial services was evident. CPA firms in particular were successfully targeted by ransomware attacks. Why?  

October 15th is a major tax filing deadline for those that requested the standard 6 month extension. CPA firms are extremely busy in late September and early October as they rush to complete filings for their clients before the deadline. Guess who else knows about the importance of this date?  Hackers.

Hackers know that the business value of your encrypted network will skyrocket in the weeks before a red-letter date.  

Every industry has its red-letter dates during the year and every business owner and security professional should be aware of these dates. Acknowledge that the likelihood of ransomware attack increases dramatically as these dates approach. Prepare for them. Some breach techniques will be standard, like trying to brute force a RDP port. Others will be new, like a new social engineering campaign designed to compromise a key employee.

If you are a retailer, recognize that Black Friday and Cyber Monday are about a month away. Think about the impact that a ransomware attack could have on your business if it was paralyzed the week before Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Prepare accordingly!