Top 8 Ransomware Attacks of 2020 That Shook The Internet

This year, ransomware attacks are one of the most common cyber attacks among organisations. Ransomware is a type of malicious software that infects a computer system as well as displays messages that demand a price to be paid in order to mitigate the issue.

The common types of ransomware include Crypto malware, Maze, Doxware, Scareware, Lockers, RaaS and others. Also, some of the popular ransomware attacks include Cryptolocker, TeslaCrypt, Petya, Bad Rabbit, among others. 

Below here, we mentioned the top eight ransomware attacks, in no particular order, that has happened in 2020.

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Cognizant Ransomware Attack

In the month of April, IT services giant — Cognizant admitted that the company had faced a ransomware attack. The IT giant revealed that its network had been infected with Maze ransomware, which is a ransomware group known for releasing stolen data to the public if the victim does not pay to decrypt it.

According to sources, the revenue and corresponding margin impact of the ransomware attack is expected to be in between $50 million to $70 million in the second quarter of 2020.

Magellan Health Ransomware Attack

In April this year, one of Fortune 500 companies, Magellan Health also announced being faced by a ransomware attack and data breach. According to sources, the attackers launched a ransomware attack on the provider and impersonated a client at Magellan Health.

This enabled the hackers to get access to the health plan’s servers. The breached data is said to be around 1.7 million that included personal information of both internal and external customers. 

Communications & Power Industries (CPI) Ransomware Attack

At the beginning of this year, one of the major electronics manufacturers for defence and communications markets, California-based Communications & Power Industries (CPI) faced a severe ransomware attack.

According to sources, the defence contractor paid a ransom of about $500,000 shortly after the incident in mid-January. As per reports, a domain admin clicked on a malicious link while they were logged in that immediately triggered the file-encrypting malware. 

University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Ransomware Attack

Further, in June, the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) staff detected a ransomware attack. As per UCSF authority, the attack occurred in a limited part of the UCSF School of Medicine’s IT environment.

According to a blog post, the encrypted data is crucial to some of the academic work. They paid some portion of the ransom, which is approximately $1.14 million, to the individuals behind the malware attack in exchange for a tool to unlock the encrypted data and the return of the data they obtained. 

Baltimore County Public Schools Attack

A few days ago, even Baltimore County public schools were closed due to a severe ransomware attack. According to sources, the ransomware attack on a school district in Maryland has halted classes for more than 115,000 pupils. This means that for Baltimore County public schools district, all pupils learning remotely because of the pandemic could suddenly no longer access lessons.

Advantech Ransomware Attack

Recently, the industrial IoT chip manufacturer Advantech had also faced a severe ransomware attack. According to sources, the chip manufacturer fell under the trap of Conti ransomware attack, which is relatively new ransomware and it is known to be the successor to the Ryuk ransomware. The hackers breached the data and demanded a ransom of 750 BTC from the vendors. 

Carnival Corporation Suffers Ransomware Attack

Leaving no industry behind, in the month of August, the world’s largest cruise line operator, Carnival Corporation had disclosed a ransomware attack. The attackers breached a portion of data from the systems.

According to sources, the unauthorised third party gained access to certain personal information relating to some guests, employees and crew for three of the corporation’s brands, which are Carnival Cruise Line, Holland America Line and Seabourn, as well as casino operations.

Canon Ransomware Attack

In the same month, the popular camera manufacturer, Canon also faced a severe ransomware attack. According to sources, the company confirmed that the attack was caused by ransomware and the cybercriminals responsible stole data from its company servers.

In a blog post, the company also revealed that an issue “involving 10GB of data storage” was under investigation, leading to the temporary suspension of related mobile apps and the online platform.

Ambika Choudhury
A Technical Journalist who loves writing about Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence. A lover of music, writing and learning something out of the box.

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