Britain starts issuing ‘Early Warning’ to Ransomware Victims

The British government has initiated a fresh initiative named the ‘Early Warning’ program, designed to proactively alert potential targets of impending ransomware attacks, offering a preventive measure before the situation escalates. However, the program, supported by the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), has faced skepticism due to its limited success rate, with only 2% of the alerts sent being confirmed as authentic, while the rest are often dismissed as false alarms.

The NCSC, an integral part of GCHQ focused on cybersecurity, contends that the program’s efficacy could significantly improve if a larger number of organizations, both from the public and private sectors, opt into this complimentary alert system.

Operated by AI-driven analysis, the Early Warning system utilizes intelligence data from various sources. Its purpose is to furnish potential targets with a preliminary notice about the possibility of a substantial ransomware attack looming on the horizon.

In order to receive these updates, organizations need to possess a fixed IP address or a domain name and must be ready to undertake risk mitigation. The technical expertise essential for countering malware effects will be offered by the NCSC at no cost.

As of the conclusion of 2022, merely 7,860 organizations have enrolled in the ‘Early Warning’ service, despite a private sector boasting 5.5 million registered businesses. Similarly, among the 160,000 registered charitable institutions, over 32,000 schools, and around 700 healthcare facilities, a mere 3% have completed registration by February 2023.

Efforts are actively underway to encourage more businesses to join the platform by the year’s end. This entails raising awareness, educating employees about prevailing cyber threats, and underscoring the tangible benefits of the Ransomware Early Warning system. These strategies aim to draw a substantial portion of potential users to the platform before the close of the year.

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Naveen Goud
Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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