Sophos: Ransomware Attacks on Healthcare Nearly Doubled in 2021
Sophos, a UK-based cybersecurity vendor, has published a new report pointing to a massive increase in ransomware attacks in the healthcare sector. Entitled “The State of Ransomware in Healthcare 2022,” the findings reveal a 94% increase in ransomware attacks on the organizations surveyed in this sector. In 2021, 66% of healthcare organizations were hit; 34% were hit the previous year.
According to the report, healthcare organizations had the second-highest average ransomware recovery costs with $1.85 million, taking one week on average to recover from an attack. Two-thirds of healthcare organizations think cyberattacks are more complex, based on their experience of how cyberattacks have changed over the last year. While healthcare organizations pay the ransom most often (61%), they’re paying the lowest average ransoms, $197,000, compared with the global average of $812,000 across all sectors in the survey.
“Ransomware in the healthcare space is more nuanced than other industries in terms of both protection and recovery,” said John Shier, senior security expert at Sophos. “The data that healthcare organizations harness is extremely sensitive and valuable, which makes it very attractive to attackers. In addition, the need for efficient and widespread access to this type of data – so that healthcare professionals can provide proper care – means that typical two-factor authentication and zero trust defense tactics aren’t always feasible. This leaves healthcare organizations particularly vulnerable, and when hit, they may opt to pay a ransom to keep pertinent, often lifesaving, patient data accessible. Due to these unique factors, healthcare organizations need to expand their anti-ransomware defenses by combining security technology with human-led threat hunting to defend against today’s advanced cyber attackers.”
More healthcare organizations (78%) are now opting for cyber insurance, but 93% of healthcare organizations with insurance coverage report finding it more difficult to get policy coverage in the last year. With ransomware being the single largest driver of insurance claims, 51% reported the level of cybersecurity needed to qualify is higher, putting a strain on healthcare organizations with lower budgets and fewer technical resources available.
The silver lining, however, is that healthcare organizations are getting better at dealing with the aftermath of ransomware attacks, according to the survey data. The report shows that 99% of those healthcare organizations hit by ransomware got at least some their data back after cybercriminals encrypted it during the attacks. Of those organizations that paid the ransom, only 2% got all their data back.
The State of Ransomware in Healthcare 2022 survey polled 5,600 IT professionals, including 381 healthcare respondents, in mid-sized organizations (100-5,000 employees) across 31 countries.
The data point to a strong opportunity for channel partners to take the lead in helping health care organization build well-rounded security strategies and provide ongoing upgrades.
Accenture Acquires Advocate, Expanding Technology Business Management Capabilities
Accenture, a global professional services company, has acquired Advocate Networks, LLC, a technology consultancy and managed services provider of Technology Business Management (TBM) solutions. Headquartered in Norcross, Georgia, Advocate’s team is joining Accenture’s Technology Strategy & Advisory practice.
“Organizations expect their technology investments to fuel innovation and transform business operations and are increasingly adopting TBM principles to optimize spend and deliver and demonstrate immediate strategic business value,” said Keith Boone, Accenture’s North America Technology Strategy & Advisory lead. “With the powerful combination of Accenture and Advocate, we will offer a multitude of industry-leading resources and capabilities to help our clients measure the value of technology initiatives in a clear, quantifiable manner.”
Advocate’s suite of services is believed to complement Accenture’s cloud and digital transformation services and end-to-end capabilities for TBM and FinOps. Advocate also brings tools and dashboards for IT value management and services that are positioned to enhance insights provided by Accenture’s proprietary assets, such as Accenture Momentum, myConcerto, myDiagnostic and myNav, with additional TBM analytics.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
The two companies are believed to have sufficient differentiation that will be combined into a stronger overall value proposition.
8×8 And Ingram Micro Cloud Expand Distribution Partnership
8×8, Inc., a Campbell, California-based integrated cloud communications platform provider, has announced an expanded distribution relationship with Ingram Micro Cloud, the distributor’s cloud marketplace for the channel. The expanded agreement allows Ingram Micro Cloud partners to resell 8×8 XCaaS, which includes integrated cloud contact center, voice, team chat, and video meetings capabilities, and continue owning the customer relationship by delivering professional services, providing technical support, and billing clients directly to recognize top line revenue.
“This expanded agreement will offer differentiated services and additional go-to-market opportunities for our partners that align to their preferred business model,” said John Dusett, Executive Director, Cloud Services at Ingram Micro Cloud. “Resellers helping organizations accelerate digital transformation efforts to meet new work from anywhere requirements, can confidently offer 8×8 XCaaS to support their customers’ cloud communications and contact center needs, plus offer additional services, maximizing revenue opportunities.”
“Growing together with our partners has been instrumental to the success of our channel strategy. We are greatly looking forward to expanding our distribution relationship by adding new resale opportunities with Ingram Micro Cloud,” said Lisa Del Real, Global Channel Chief at 8×8, Inc. “8×8 XCaaS and our Teams solutions are providing channel partners with growing business opportunities to help organizations enhance employee and customer experiences to meet new work requirements.”
Participating partners receive access to a dedicated 8×8 team, large deal support, free demo systems, marketing support, and the ability to receive full certification in sales, deployment, and support.
The new agreement enables the Ingram Micro Cloud partner community to expand their cloud communications, collaboration, and contact center portfolio, and offer 8×8 XCaaS. The move also extends 8×8’s reach into the channel.