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India, UK perform virtual drill to counter ransomware attack for 26 nations

India, UK perform virtual drill to counter ransomware attack for 26 nations
September 07
06:34 2022

New Delhi, Sep 7 (IANS) In a bid to prepare for a large, widespread cyber-security incident, India’s National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS) and the UK government, in collaboration with BAE Systems, on Tuesday successfully conducted a virtual ransomware drill for 26 countries.

The exercise was part of the International Counter Ransomware Initiative (CRI)-Resilience Working Group which is being led by India under the leadership of National Cyber Security Coordinator (NCSC).

This exercise has been designed to support the mission of the CRI, and aims to allow participating CRI members to test their capability to respond to a major ransomware incident; demonstrates the benefit of sharing information and collaborating during a major incident; and provide opportunities for the CRI nations to share their approaches to countering ransomware.

The exercise has been facilitated by BAE Systems via the Immersive Labs platform, and the scenario was written specifically for the participants based on threat Intelligence and operational experiences.

The theme was based on energy sector that has seen some serious ransomware attacks in the recent past, to safeguard electricity distribution companies which are responsible for the distribution of electricity to domestic customers and are the last link to the public supply.

The exercise explored the complexity of decision-making around response to ransomware on Critical National Infrastructure.

Cyber-attacks on critical infrastructure by nation-state bad actors have increased significantly and India observed a 70 per cent increase in ransomware activity in the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2021, a new report said recently.

According to the report by cybersecurity company Trellix, over half of adversarial advanced persistent threat actor activity originated from Russian and Chinese backed groups and Russian-backed groups like APT29 have continued to greatly increase their activity in 2022.

Reports surfaced last week that a Russian malware planted from a server in Nigeria was used for a cyber attack on Oil India’s (OIL) system in Assam.

The state-owned company had suffered a major cyber-attack in its field headquarters in eastern Assam’s Duliajan, with the hacker demanding $75,00,000.

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