The insurance industry was the most frequent focus of ransomware attacks in the first half of this year, while the overall number of cyberattack incidents increased 125%, according to an Accenture PLC report released Wednesday.

The report from Accenture’s cyber investigation, forensics and response unit is based on data obtained from Accenture clients.

Ransomware was the most frequent malware by category, accounting for 38% of attacks, followed by backdoors, which allow criminals to bypass normal authentication channels and gain remote access, which accounted for 33% of the total, the report said. 

Insurance accounted for 23% of the ransomware attacks by industry, followed by consumer goods and services (17%) and telecommunications (16%), according to the report.

Fifty-four percent of ransomware attacks were against companies with between $1 billion and $9.9 billion in revenue, followed by companies with between $10 billion and $20 billion in revenue, at 20%.

“Despite heightened awareness, government action and industry collaboration, ransomware is likely to remain one of the top threats to businesses globally,” the report said. “If anything, it has entered a new phase as threat actors adopt stronger pressure tactics and capitalize on opportunistic intrusion vectors.”

Five industries accounted for more than 60% of all cyberattacks in the first half of this year: Consumer goods and services, 21%; industrial, 16%; banking 10%; travel and hospitality, 9%; and insurance, 8%.

The United States was the area most impacted, accounting for 36% of the total volume of attacks, followed by the United Kingdom, at 24%.

 

 

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