Malwarebytes report: ransomware attacks increased 68% in 2023

The report names ransomware as one of cyberthreats that IT teams should pay attention to in 2024.

 Computer, Computer Hardware, Computer Keyboard, Electronics, Hardware

Known ransomware attacks increased 68% in 2023, reaching a record level of 4,475 attacks, The State of Malware report by Malwarebytes reveals.

The US accounted for 45% of these attacks, followed by the UK with 7%. The largest ransom demand of $80 million came from the LockBit gang after an attack on Royal Mail. May 2023 was the most intense month, with 560 ransomware attacks.

Ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) gangs like LockBit and ALPHV play a significant role, with LockBit being the most prominent in 2023.

The cybercriminal landscape relies on proven techniques such as phishing, software exploits, and password guessing, alongside malicious technologies like trojans and ransomware. Innovation in cybercrime now focuses on tactics rather than new malware functionalities.

Ransomware gangs employ Living off the Land (LotL) attacks, using difficult-to-detect techniques involving legitimate tools like Powershell. Malvertising also made a comeback, threatening both businesses and consumers. Malwarebytes detected evolving attacks on Android, Mac, and Windows devices. Android banking trojans were detected 88,500 times in 2023, and Macs accounted for 11% of detections.

The report warns that as the world enters 2024, there are shrinking IT and security teams and budgets.