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Breaking the Ransomware Cycle: U.S. National Policy Options

Holding objects of value hostage until a ransom is paid for their release is an ancient vice, but it has acquired special salience in the digital age, as cyber criminals in this era of internet-facilitated computer network dependencies have learned to take data itself hostage in return for ransom payments.

The explosive growth of “ransomware” attacks in recent years is the result of dynamics in which the cost and risk to attackers have all but disappeared, victims’ incentives to pay promptly have increased, and the profitability of ransomware crime has duly exploded. Predictably, this has attracted steadily more predators to the “game” of digital ransom, and has produced a “feeding frenzy” of ransomware attacks, which U.S. officials have labeled a national crisis.

  • Author(s):
  • Christopher Ford
  • Charles Clancy
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Breaking the Ransomware Cycle: U.S. National Policy Options
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Publisher:Mitre
Published:July 31, 2021
License:Copyrighted
Copyright:© 2021 The MITRE Corporation. All rights reserved.

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