Study: UK firms most likely to pay ransomware hackers

A new report by security firm Proofpoint suggests that around 82% of British firms, which have been victims of ransomware attacks, paid the hackers in order to gain back their data. The global average was 58%, making the UK the most likely country to pay cyber-criminals.

Proofpoint’s data also found that more than three-quarters of UK businesses were affected by ransomware in 2021 alone, with phishing being the key way that criminals accessed company networks.

Furthermore, only half of the companies affected by ransomware regained access to data and systems after the first payment, the research found, as criminals got greedy and demanded more money.

The fact that phishing remains the favoured method of attack for cyber-criminals means that firms need to build "a culture of security", said Proofpoint researchers.

Read the full study here.