Cryptocurrency experts have warned that ransomware payments will likely surpass both the $602m already identified and the 2020 figure.
The Ransomware Crypto Crime Report produced by blockchain investigations and analytics company Chainalysis presents significant insight into industry trends.
The report shows that average payment size has soared in recent years. In 2019 it was only $25,000, rising to $88,000 in 2020 and $118,000 in 2021. This is likely due to increasing attacks on large organisations, known as “big-game hunting”. Attacks such as these can net hackers tens of millions in one fell swoop.
“This big-game hunting strategy is enabled in part by ransomware attackers’ usage of tools provided by third-party providers to make their attacks more effective,” the report explained. “Usage of these services by ransomware operators spiked to its highest ever levels in 2021.”