Ransomware's rise to the top of the malware charts shows no signs of slowing, nor has preparation by security executives for such an attack. Now a new service promises both response and training assistance for companies girding for the worst.
The Flashpoint Threat Response & Readiness Subscription includes training on what to do when a ransomware or extortion attack hits and negotiated rates for professional services when an attack actually occurs. "Some customers have been asking for this for some time, [while] others, at first blush, say that they don't need it," says Tom Hofmann, vice president of intelligence at Flashpoint. "When we talk through some of the incidents, though, then there's a strong demand to learn more."
In particular, attacks based on extortion — when a threat actor exfiltrates information and threatens to reveal the contents if money is not paid — falls outside the playbook of most organizations, Hofmann says. And it's a playbook that has pages covering more than the IT security organization. "We work with legal departments, outside counsel, the PR team — we've seen cases where malware hits, corporate systems are locked up, and corporate employees were taking pictures with their cellphones and tweeting it out," he says.
Planning is crucial, Hofmann adds, because "this is where cyber blends with the business." In addition, stress is added because all teams will be in full incident-response mode — typically a poor time to be developing policies and processes to deal with an issue.
The subscription is intended to help companies understand the malware, understand the options for responding, and decide whether there's a cyber response in addition to the business response. The Flashpoint Threat Response & Readiness Subscription is available now.
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