Press Release

Ransomware threats persist in financial sector amid rising cloud app adoption

Press Release by Netskope Tue 27 Feb 2024

Netskope Threat Labs’ recent Threat Labs Report shed light on the continuous cyber threats facing the financial sector, particularly emphasising the dual-edged sword of cloud application adoption.

As financial services increasingly lean on cloud technologies for operational efficiency, this shift also opens doors to sophisticated malware and ransomware attacks.

The study highlighted the financial sector’s preference for Microsoft’s suite of cloud applications, with OneDrive, Teams, and SharePoint leading the pack.

These platforms, especially SharePoint and Teams, have become significant vectors for potential security breaches, consistently ranking as top channels for malware distribution since September 2023.

Ransomware remains a formidable threat to the financial sector, with the industry standing out as a prime target for attackers.

The research points out the continued activity of ransomware groups such as the Clopp gang and the LockBit family, exploiting vulnerabilities like the CVE-2023-34362 MOVEit flaw to launch attacks on financial institutions.

Paolo Passeri, Cyber Intelligence Principal at Netskope, commented on the findings, stressing the importance of vigilant infrastructure security.

“The macro trends for cloud app use and abuse have remained consistent for the finance sector over the past year … The figures are a reminder that every organisation should take the time to assess and secure their own infrastructure and that simple operational mistakes could expose you to significant threats,” said Passeri.

The prevalence of cloud-delivered malware, accounting for half of the malware downloads in the finance sector, underscores the limitations of traditional security measures. These measures often fall short in effectively monitoring and blocking threats that bypass regular controls by leveraging cloud services.

This report serves as a crucial call to action for the financial sector to reassess and fortify their cybersecurity strategies, especially in an era where cloud applications are becoming the backbone of industry operations.

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