Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Phishing Scams & Ransomware Prevention in Europe

Oct 14, 2022

Since 2004, October has been recognized as Cybersecurity Awareness Month in the United States. Throughout this month, companies and IT professionals across the world should make sure that they’re rededicating themselves to cybersecurity best practices, mitigating risks, and working to improve their overall data security.  This year’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month could not have come soon enough. Through October 2022, companies have already seen an average of $4.35 million in losses this year due to phishing scams, ransomware attacks, and other kinds of data breaches. This number exceeds the total losses from previous years, and it’s not even the end of October yet! For cybersecurity professionals in Europe, the past few years have proven particularly challenging. According to the European Union Agency for Cybersecurity, there were more than 623 major ransomware attacks across the European Union, the United Kingdom, and the United States between May 2021 and June 2022.  Read on to learn about just a few of the major recent data breaches in Europe. Then, learn how you can prevent data breaches this Cybersecurity Awareness Month through a partnership with Kiuwan. 

2022 BlackCat Ransomware Attacks

In February 2022, several countries across Europe fell victim to sophisticated ransomware cyberattacks. These attacks particularly targeted shipping, oil, and logistics companies that operate in ports across the European Union. Major companies affected included Belgium’s SEA-Invest, the Netherlands’ Evos, and Germany’s Oiltanking GmbH and Mabanaft Groups. European Union cybersecurity officials investigating these attacks believed that the ransomware came from the notorious BlackCat and Conti ransomware families. 
blackcat ransomware Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Phishing Scams & Ransomware Prevention in Europe

Lloyd’s of London Cyberattack

As if to herald this year’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month, Lloyd’s of London, one of the world’s biggest insurance marketplaces, announced on October 5 that it had detected “unusual activity” on its network, which may have involved a lengthy cyberattack. As the investigation is still ongoing, the corporation has not revealed the extent of the data breach, or what specific information may have been compromised. But considering that Lloyd’s of London oversees an insurance market in which over 100 insurance syndicates operate, any ransomware attack or data breach would have significant consequences for millions of people across the globe. 
This data breach is especially significant given the backdrop of the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. Lloyd’s of London has previously been vocal in supporting sanctions against Russia, and many on its cybersecurity team have long feared possible retaliation in the form of cyberattacks. Though Lloyd’s has not yet disclosed whether or not the attacks are related to the Russo-Ukrainian War, the heightened geopolitical situation makes any kind of data breach all the more perilous. 
lloyds Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Phishing Scams & Ransomware Prevention in Europe

Cyberattacks Against Montenegro’s Government Websites

In September 2022, just a few weeks before the cyberattacks against Lloyd’s of London were revealed, the government of the European nation of Montenegro revealed its own major data breach that affected dozens of Montenegrin government websites. In addition to significant data breaches, the cyberattacks took the form of severe ransomware attacks against critical Montenegrin government infrastructure. In fact, the risk posed by the ransomware attacks was so significant that the country’s state-owned power utility company was forced to switch temporarily to manual operations to mitigate potential harm and data losses from the cyberattacks. 
Like the attacks against Lloyd’s of London, these attacks may have arisen from Russian hacking operations, which have often targeted European nations like Montenegro that have recently become member states of NATO. But regardless of the origins of these attacks, they have been significant enough to shut down critical government websites, compromise essential utilities and services, and potentially expose the personal data of the country’s more than 600,000 citizens.
Flag map of Montenegro Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Phishing Scams & Ransomware Prevention in Europe

This Cybersecurity Awareness Month, Decrease Your Risk of Data Breaches With Kiuwan!

From Europe to the United States and all around the world, governments and businesses need the best partners and the best resources to mitigate risks posed by cyberattacks. This Cybersecurity Awareness Month, it’s a good idea for any IT or cybersecurity professional to beef up their software security and application security. A comprehensive approach to data security will include industry best practices like SAST and SCA, as well as a more thorough integration of a security focus through the normal development and operations processes of the IT lifecycle. 
CS for Kiuwan for Web 2 5 Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Phishing Scams & Ransomware Prevention in Europe
As a worldwide leader in code and application security solutions, Kiuwan offers companies, governments, and individuals the tools and resources needed to prevent costly data breaches and maintain excellent digital security. All in all, Kiuwan is the best partner to maximize cybersecurity in a world of ever-increasing threats, both during Cybersecurity Awareness Month and throughout the rest of the year. 

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