Analysis & Opinions - TechStream

Should Ransomware Payments Be Banned?

| July 26, 2021

In recent memory, ransomware has gone from major nuisance to international crisis. Criminal gangs that target computers, encrypt their contents, and demand a ransom in order to provide a decryptor tool have struck critical infrastructure around the world. They have disrupted Ireland’s entire healthcare systems, shut down hundreds of food retailers in Sweden, and disrupted fuel delivery to the U.S. Eastern Seaboard, among countless other examples. 

At the heart of the ransomware phenomenon is a misalignment of economic and policy incentives that allow criminals to operate successfully and with impunity. But as ransomware has proliferated, addressing this problem most often falls on the shoulders of its victims—businesses facing difficult decisions about whether or not to pay ransoms to regain access to critical systems and data. And as victims have paid up in order to mitigate damage, there are now growing calls for businesses to be banned from paying ransoms....

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For Academic Citation:

Wheeler, Tarah and Ciaran Martin."Should Ransomware Payments Be Banned?" TechStream, July 26, 2021.