Check Point Research (CPR) has reported that as we enter Cybersecurity Awareness Month in October, globally, there are 40% more attacks weekly on organizations in 2021 compared to 2020.
Globally, after a slight decrease in the weeks before March 2020, from March 2020, there was a significant increase in the average weekly number of attacks on each organization over the months including 2021. In September 2021, the average weekly number of attacks on each organization globally reached its peak with over 870 attacks. This is more than double the number of attacks in March 2020.
While Africa is the most targeted region for cyberattacks, Europe and North America faced the biggest increases in cyberattacks between 2020 and 2021. Organizations in Africa experienced the highest volume of attacks so far in 2021, with an average of 1,615 weekly attacks per organization. This is a 15% increase from last year. This is followed by APAC with an average of 1,299 weekly attacks per organization (20% increase), followed by Latin America with an average of 1,117 attacks weekly (37% increase), Europe with 665 (65% increase) and North America with 497 (57% increase).
The sectors which are experiencing the highest volumes of cyberattacks are Education/Research with an average of 1,468 attacks per organization each week (increase of 60% from 2020), followed by Government/Military with 1,082 (40% increase) and Healthcare with 752 (55% increase).
Ransomware continues to plague organizations across the world
In addition, CPR observed that globally in 2021, on average, 1 out of every 61 organizations is impacted by ransomware each week – a 9% increase compared to 2020. The ISP/MSP sector is the industry most attacked by ransomware this year. The average weekly number of impacted organizations in this sector in 2021 is 1 out of 36 (32% increase from 2020). Healthcare is in second place with 1 out of 44 organizations having been impacted (39% increase) followed by software vendors in third place with 1 out of 52 organizations (21% increase).
APAC is seeing the highest volume of attack attempts by ransomware with 1 out of 34 organizations being impacted every week in 2021. This is a 10% decrease compared to 2020. This is followed by Africa with 1 out of 48 organizations being impacted (7% decrease) and Latin America with 1 out of 57 organizations (6% increase).
“October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month, and a time for everyone to be reminded about the role they play in ensuring cybersecurity, both locally and across the world,” said Omer Dembinsky, Data Research Group Manager, Threat Intelligence and Research Organization, Check Point Software Technologies. “Since the outbreak of the pandemic globally, cyber criminals have sprung into action to take advantage of the opportunities presented to them. With the continued rise in cyberattacks, Check Point Software recommends that organizations adopt a preventive approach to cybersecurity, rather than work on remediation after the fact when damage has been inflicted.”
The malware type which has impacted organizations the most is the botnet with an average of over 8% of organizations being impacted weekly (a 9% decrease from 2020). This is followed by banking malware at 4.6% (a 26% increase) and cryptominers at 4.2% (a 22% decrease).
The data used in this report was detected by Check Point Software’s Threat Prevention technologies, stored and analyzed in Check Point ThreatCloud. ThreatCloud provides real-time threat intelligence derived from hundreds of millions of sensors worldwide, over networks, endpoints and mobiles. The intelligence is enriched with AI-based engines and exclusive research data from Check Point Research – The intelligence & research arm of Check Point Software Technologies.