What do a small town in Ontario, a plastics manufacturing firm in Winnipeg, an arts centre in PEI, and a fighter jet training company in Montreal have in common? They were all victims of a ransomware attack over the last several months.
As these and many other Canadian organizations can attest, ransomware attacks are devastating. In addition to the cost of paying ransom to decrypt their data, or to prevent it from being published on the internet, organizations typically face significant operational disruption that leads to lost productivity and lost revenue. Many victims also take a hit to their reputation as customers, employees and others question whether the organization is capable of safeguarding their data and fending off future attacks.
The findings from the 2022 CIRA Cybersecurity Survey shed new light on the state of ransomware in Canada and the steps Canadian organizations are taking to combat it.
Canadian organizations in all sectors being victimized by ransomware
In keeping with global trends, ransomware attacks in Canada are widespread and hurting organizations across all sectors. Overall, 22 per cent of organizations indicate they were the victim of a successful ransomware attack in the past 12 months, up from 17 per cent in 2021. Private sector organizations reported the highest percentage of ransomware attacks at 24 percent, followed by 22 per cent in the public sector and 19 per cent in the MUSH (municipalities, universities, school boards and hospitals) sector.