Median Ransomware Payments Fall by 51% as Victims Refuse to Pay Hackers

Ransomware took the cybersecurity community by surprise when it first started getting used, and it became the bane of businesses throughout much of 2021 with all things having been considered and taken into account. In spite of the fact that this is the case, certain trends have been noted that seem to suggest that the wind has been taken out of this hacking method’s sails. One such trend that Coveware recently noted is that ransomware payment amounts seem to be decreasing.

The average amount paid out to ransomware attackers actually increased by 8% quarter over quarter, reaching $228,125 in the second quarter of 2022. With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that this average is likely being inorganically increased by larger than average payments made by big name firms. If you take a look at the median, you’d see that this metric has seen a sharp decline of about 51% during the same interim.

Additionally, average ransomware payments have also decreased by as much as 33% from the fourth quarter of 2021. This suggests that the uptick this past quarter is just a blip, and it also indicates that victims are refusing to pay the ransoms that hackers are demanding.

Tactics such as having data backups on hand allow ransomware victims to avoid paying the demanded ransom, since the deletion of data from their servers would be an easily fixable issue. Also, it appears that ransomware is being used to target smaller and smaller firms. In the fourth quarter of 2020, the median size of companies impacted by ransomware attacks was about 235 employees. In the second quarter of 20220, this median company size plummeted to just 105 employees.

Hence, ransomware attackers are clearly being forced to make do with slimmer pickings. They can no longer target larger firms so they have to target smaller ones, and this is also going to reduce the median ransom since smaller companies won’t have the cash required to pay ransoms that are in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

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