WannaCry was not so shocking for nearly half of cybersecurity pros

Survey finds 49 percent of infosec execs say they’ve dealt with major WannaCry-like attacks out of public view, and 20 percent of those execs say they’ve handled six attacks in the last year.
By Bill Siwicki
01:36 PM
WannaCry ransomware

CIOs and CISOs are much busier in the realm of cybersecurity than some might think if they base their judgments solely on the media accounts of major malware attacks like WannaCry.

Nearly half of cybersecurity professionals said there have been security incidents similar to WannaCry that they worked on just as frantically that the public never hears about, according to a new survey from cybersecurity vendor Farsight Security.

Of those 49 percent, nearly 72 percent said that a cybersecurity event requiring them to work frantically to protect networks from attack had occurred three times in just the last year, the June survey of 360 information security professionals found.

[Also: It's not just WannaCry: Locky is targeting hospitals on outdated Windows platforms]

Further, of the 49 percent, 20 percent said major security events have happened up to six times during the last year alone.

The WannaCry ransomware attack began on May 12, and within a day was reported to have infected more than 230,000 computers in more than 150 countries. WannaCry rocked the IT world and security experts are now saying it infected at least 1 million more systems than originally thought.

[Also: Expert tips on bracing for future WannaCry attacks]

And it’s not over yet.

“WannaCry is a slow-pitch softball, whereas the next one may be a high and tight fastball coming in,” Gregory Touhill, former federal CISO and adjunct professor of cybersecurity and risk management at Carnegie Mellon University, recently told a congressional Science, Space and Technology committee. “We need to be ready.”

Twitter: @SiwickiHealthIT
Email the writer: bill.siwicki@himssmedia.com

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