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While healthcare and financial services companies have long been favorite targets, law firms are increasingly being attacked due to the sensitive client data they store. (Credit: Yanawut Suntornkij/Shutterstock.com) While healthcare and financial services companies have long been favorite targets, law firms are increasingly being attacked due to the sensitive client data they store. (Credit: Yanawut Suntornkij/Shutterstock.com)

The Colonial Pipeline ransomware event illuminated the dark deeds that cyber extortionists perpetrate every hour on businesses of all sizes and types, though few of the attacks have the news value of causing massive fuel shortages.

From 2019 through 2020, ransomware payments using cryptocurrency increased more than 300%. Nearly six-in-10 (59%) of U.S.-based companies experienced a ransomware attack in 2019, with only 25% of the organizations able to stop the attack before their data was encrypted and/or exfiltrated by the extortionists, according to a survey of IT managers by Sophos in early 2020.

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