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Cyberattacks from China are an increasing worry for Indian companies amid a warning by experts that the rapid spread of digital technology following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic is leading to a rise in ransomware and phishing.

India has been the worst-hit by ransomware in the Asia Pacific region this year, with 74% companies coming under such attacks, compared to Australia (67%), Japan (52%) and Singapore (46%).

More than a third of Indian organizations have paid $1-$2.5 million as a result of malware attacks in the last year, according to the findings of a 2020 ‘global security attitude survey’ by US-based cybersecurity technology company CrowdStrike.

The survey found that in India, ransomware, general malware, phishing and password attacks are the major concerns for organizations, with 90% of them threatened by e-crime and 77% concerned by hacktivists, followed by insider threats and threats from nation-states. In fact, for more than half the organizations nation-state attacks are the biggest concern for 2021.

A majority of respondents feel most threatened by attacks originating from China (76%) followed by Pakistan (48%) and Russia (43%).

“This year has been especially challenging for organizations of all sizes around the world, with both the proliferation of ransomware and growing tensions from nation-state actors posing a massive threat to regions worldwide," said Michael Sentonas, chief technology officer, CrowdStrike.

Last week, online grocer Bigbasket suffered a massive data breach in which details of more than 20 million users may have been leaked on the dark web. Data worth $40,000 ( 30 lakh) was sold, according to cybersecurity firm Cyble Inc.

Pharma companies Dr Reddy’s Laboratories and Lupin have faced cyberattacks too.

In June, delivery startup Dunzo experienced a data breach in which the personal details of more than 300,000 accounts were leaked.

“Now more than ever, organizations are finding ways to rapidly undergo digital transformation to bring their security to the cloud in order to keep pace with modern-day threats and secure their ‘work from anywhere’ operations," Sentonas added.


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