International Ransomware Attack Could Cost $193B in Economic Damages: Report

A new report from the Cyber Risk Management (CyRiM) project has projected that an international ransomware attack could cost $193 billion in damages. Such an attack would cost the US $89 billion, accounting for nearly half of the total projected cost.

The report, ‘Bashe attack: Global infection by contagious malware’, shows that across the U.S. an attack would cause economic damage to a wide range of business sectors. Globally, retail and healthcare are the most affected ($25 billion each) and in the U.S. the financial sector also tops the list.

Such an attack, which launches through an infected email, encrypts data on every device connected to the network, and has the potential to spread quickly around the world, affecting 600,000 companies, ranging from premier institutions to small businesses, according to the report.

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The report shows that companies are underprepared for such an attack, with 86 percent of the total economic costs uninsured.

The losses in the U.S. result from a combination of reduced productivity and consumption, IT clean-up costs, ransom payments and supply chain disruption.

“According to Lloyd’s City Risk Index, a cyber-attack is the second greatest threat to the U.S. economy – in large part due to the increasing impact of attacks as the U.S. and global economies become more dependent on and driven by technology,” said Hank Watkins, Regional Director and President, Americas at Lloyd’s.

Lloyd’s of London,  an insurance and reinsurance marketis a founding member of CyRiM.