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According to Ciso, in the past year in South Korea, the number of ransomware attacks has increased sharply, leaving hospitals and shopping malls paralyzed. The reason is that the spread of Covid-19 caused many people to use the Internet.
On June 3, a major plastic surgery facility in South Seoul announced that its servers had been hit by a ransomware attack. Hackers appear to have stolen patient records. This is the latest in a series of ransomware attacks reported in Seoul, South Korea.
According to the Ministry of Science and Information Technology and Communications, the number of ransomware attacks in South Korea has increased to 127 in 2020, 3 times more than in 2019 (39 attacks). Since the beginning of the year, according to Yonhap, about 65 attacks have been reported.
Ransomware attacks target a wide range of businesses. Last month, Super Hero Company operations were halted for several hours, affecting 15,000 shippers worldwide following a ransomware attack. Last November, hackers broke into the fashion and retail giant E-Land, causing 23 out of 50 stores to close.
As the Covid-19 pandemic caused many people to use the Internet, cybersecurity attacks have increased both in number and in attack. According to Kim Seung-joo, a cybersecurity expert at Korea University, in addition to damaging the company’s entire working system, a ransomware attack can cause more problems because companies depend on more on the Internet due to working remotely during the epidemic.
As a result, many companies are paying ransom for attacks like this. This encourages more ransomware attacks. According to expert Kim, this is a vicious cycle and companies should invest in cybersecurity to prevent problems in the first place.
Last month, the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology established a 24-hour monitoring team to assist companies affected by the attacks.
However, it appears that the attacks are part of a global attack pattern. For example, the Colonial Pipeline hack in the US cost the company $4.4 million in ransom.
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