Expert comment on the latest Dominican Republic quantum ransomware attack

Organisations and government agencies are now facing an unimaginable task with the number of sophisticated attacks they are facing. As well as quantum ransomware attacks such as the one that hit the Dominican Republic, organisations are also facing AI attacks such as adversarial AI.

Deep Instinct’s research has shown that cyber criminals are becoming more successful at evading AI/ML cybersecurity solutions. If these cybersecurity solutions are unable to stop ransomware attacks, then the basic security principles that the Dominican Republic had in place have no chance.

Unfortunately, cyberattacks like this can have a huge impact on government operations and civilian lives. When threat actors are able to disrupt agriculture programs, then this can have a significant impact on food stocks, trade, and local businesses. Cyber criminals are despicable people and have no moral compass. They do not care about the impact of their actors as long as their ransom is paid.

The actors behind this attack have already demanded a ransom fee of $650,000. The most important thing for the Dominican Republic is that they do not pay. Many organisations that pay a ransom will fund these groups’ future criminal activities and could expose themselves to further attacks. Of those who paid, only 32% of organisations have their data returned and are left alone.

Once organisations have refused to pay the ransom, they need to start improving their security. Businesses need to be looking towards prevention-first solution that stop ransomware attacks before they breach the network. Advanced attacks, such as this one, are able to evade organisations that work with a reactive mindset and therefore are not enough to secure cyber resilience. With a new mindset towards cybersecurity, organisations and government agencies are able to combat both current and future cyber threats.