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Symantec Sees Ransomware Hackers Getting More Advanced, Targeted

  • ‘Gold rush’ mentality fueling higher demands for blocked data
  • Hospitals not the most targeted, despite publicized cases

Hackers using software to block data and then demand money in return are relying on increasingly advanced techniques more commonly seen in cyber-espionage cases, the antivirus company Symantec Corp. said.

While individuals are still the major target of such ransomware attacks, accounting for about 57 percent of recorded victims, infections of businesses and larger organizations are on the rise, spiking in late 2015, Symantec said Tuesday in its annual “Ransomware and Businesses” report. With global losses due to ransomware attacks climbing, perpetrators have a “gold rush” mentality that is fueling new techniques and higher demands for payments.