More than four out of five (83%) resellers see ransomware attacks as the main threat – but most are not ready to counter any such attack.

In a survey carried out for WatchGuard, 45% of resellers said they believed less than half of their customers would have the right tools and measures in place to fend off ransomware, which is now becoming a much more prevalent threat to businesses. The report also found that many resellers don’t believe their customers understand the difference between unified threat management (UTM) appliances and next-generation firewalls, both of which would be used to repel ransomware attacks.

Libraries in the US city of St Louis were recently hit by a ransomware attack disabling the systems of 17 libraries and demanding a ransom to restore them. While the libraries were able to restore from a backup, the attack meant no one was able to borrow books while the recovery operation took place.

A lack of readiness to counter external attacks seems to be a widespread problem. A report from the cyber-threat intelligence company, DomainTools, claimed that more than one in four organisations have been breached in the past 12 months, while 23% said they were unsure if their defences had been penetrated or not. When asked to rate their cybersecurity, 43% gave themselves a score of ‘C’, ‘D’, ‘F’, or ‘non-existent’, while only 15 percent gave themselves an ‘A. The latter minority share several, including high levels of automation, a threat intelligence framework, and a robust training for security staff.

Separately, a report from the US Identity Theft Resource Center said that data breaches in the US rose 40% in 2016 to hit a record high of 1,093. Spending on security products and services was $73.7 billion and is expected to approach $90 billion in 2018.

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