Sponsored by Asigra, BlackFog, Cyren, Infoblox, IRONSCALES, Micro Focus, SonicWall, and Trend Micro

Published October 2022

Executive Summary

This white paper could start by reviewing the college that closed permanently after a ransomware attack or the large school district that suffered an incident during a recent holiday weekend. Or it could focus on how critical infrastructure—such as water treatment plants, pipelines, and meat processing plants—are increasingly under attack. We could even comment on the increase in ransom demands.

We are not going to do any of the above—at the beginning of this white paper or anywhere else. While there are important lessons to take from each of these situations, we will leave that analysis to others.

This white paper takes a different approach. It starts by quickly establishing the current context on ransomware before moving into an analysis of where current and best practices diverge. We’ll look at eight areas where many organizations remain susceptible to ransomware attacks, outline new and emerging solutions or approaches that can be used to bolster controls and protections, and offer a report card for self-assessment by organizations. Most report cards are additive (the “better” level also requires the “baseline” controls, and the “best” level requires the controls from all three levels) while two are based on maturity (low, medium, and high).

The first four areas focus on defending against ransomware attacks, the final three focus on recovering after an attack, and the fifth area does double duty for defending and recovering. By the end of this white paper, decision-makers and influencers charged with evaluating and selecting cybersecurity solutions should have a better idea of their organization’s readiness (or not) to counteract ransomware.

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