International crime-fighting organization, Interpol, joined forces with cybersecurity firm, Kaspersky, to launch a campaign called “Anti-Ransomware Day”. The date is set on the third anniversary of the most significant ransomware attack on record, WannaCry.

According to the announcement, the May 12 holiday will raise awareness about the effects of ransom-centric cyberattacks which continue to affect people and businesses all over the world.

A study revealed by Kaspersky reported that until October 2019, WannaCry held the title of the most significant ransomware attack ever executed. Companies affected by WannaCry attacks suffered losses averaging $1.46 million.

Other expenses affect the targeted companies

The researchers said that about 767,907 users were affected by these types of cyberattacks during 2019; 30% of those were corporate users.

Sergey Martsynkyan, head of B2B product marketing at Kaspersky, told Infosecurity-Magazine:

“The threat remains relevant today, as there will be users out there who still may not know much about it and can become a victim. The good news is that the right security approach and relevant measures can make ransomware yet another non-critical threat.” 

Craig Jones, Interpol’s director of cybercrime, added:

“Cybercriminals are diversifying attack vectors to launch cyberattacks exploiting the COVID-19 outbreak. These cyberthreats are causing serious harm to people and organizations, which exacerbate an already dire situation in the physical world. Now is the time when we all must come together to stop them.”

Ransomware attacks decrease somewhat amid COVID-19

A report released by Emsisoft Malware Lab, and reported by Cointelegraph on April 21, revealed that there was a significant drop in the number of successful ransomware attacks on the US public sector during Q1 2020.

However, ransomware attacks have not stopped worldwide, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cointelegraph also reported on May 6 that hackers compromised the IT systems of Fresenius — a Germany-based private hospital, considered the largest in Europe.