Australian authorities will oblige local companies to be fully transparent and report any ransomware cyberattacks on their businesses. The country’s economy lost $2.59 billion to cybercrimes in 2021.
As reported by the Australian on Nov. 13, the national cybersecurity strategy, which will be revealed this week, will feature a mandatory system under which local businesses must alert the government about ransomware cyberattacks. However, this obligation won’t be backed by a fine if the company fails to comply.
The companies will still be allowed to pay ransoms, although new National Cyber Security Coordinator Air Marshal Darren Goldie has publicly discouraged them from doing so. In October, Australia joined almost 40 other nations in a pledge not to pay ransomware demands made against government agencies.
Related: The anatomy of a cyberattack
Before enacting the mandatory system, the government intends to consult with the business community on its design, as Minister for Cyber Security Clare O’Neil has specified:
“We’ll create a ransomware playbook that will provide clear guidance to businesses and citizens on how to prepare for, deal with, and bounce back from ransom demands.”
Ransomware attacks remain a common problem in the digital economy. In July, The United States Department of Justice (DoJ) announced the doubling of its crypto crimes team and setting the immediate focus on combatting ransomware crimes.
According to Chainalysis, wallets involved in ransomware attacks often turn to crypto mining pools to launder the funds acquired through exploits. The research firm believes there has been an increase in value sent from ransomware wallets to mining pools. In one instance, Chainalysis highlighted that an exchange wallet address had received $158.3 million from ransomware addresses since 2018.