Downtime caused by Cyber Attacks

A common question we are asked is:  

What is the average downtime after a Ransomware attack on my business? 

The average length of downtime after ransomware attacks on businesses in the United States was 22 days.

The graph below shows the average downtime in days after a ransomware attack. A ransomware attack is just one type of cyber attack that can cause financial implications for a business. If you have a cyber insurance policy, you might be able to weather the financial burden of a cyber attack, however the downtime it incurs may be difficult to recover from. 

Average Duration (Days) of Downtime after a ransomware attack

cyber downtime

Manufacturing and Cyber Security

If you are reading this article, and every time you see the word “downtime” you can’t help but think of the 8 forms of waste: D.O.W.N.T.I.M.E. …

8 forms of waste


Well then you are likely in the manufacturing industry and this article is of particular interest to you. Manufactures are one of the most targeted types of business for cyber attacks. The reason is that for most companies in the manufacturing industry, cyber security has not been a priority and all the cyber threats out there are aware of it. The attackers also know that manufacturing companies tend to have plenty of network-connected machines, and pieces of equipment that are critical for running the operations. If these machines go down, profitability will quickly start to decline. 

The manufacturing industry has a strong track record of driving efficiencies through internal processes, continuous improvement, quality control and process feedback loops. Concepts of Six-Sigma, Kaizen and Lean Manufacturing have driven productivity in the industry. However, when it comes to cyber security, companies accept a blissful or willful ignorance of the potential risks that could force all of the efficient internal processes to grind to a halt. 

It is likely that your company has a very competent I.T. team managing all aspects of the company’s data infrastructure. Strong anti-virus, malware and ransomware software is likely defending the company against known cyber attacks. This is a very important aspect to having a strong Cyber Security Posture as a company. However, this is only one aspect. 

Defensive vs. Offensive Strategies

Defensive strategies are a great baseline when it comes to the known viruses, malware and ransomware. However, what about the unknown. When you see large companies in the news regarding a cyber attack, you have to imagine that they have plenty of defensive measures put in place by their large IT teams, yet attackers still managed to find an exploit. 

This is where the second aspect of a strong cyber posture comes into play. That being Offensive Strategies. Offensive strategies test how robust your defensive strategies are, and will help you develop a stronger cyber security posture over all. Most penetration testing exercises reveal that exploits are not found in hidden backdoors, but in human error. The most important asset of the company can sometimes be its weakest link in regards to cyber attacks. The human element can be present in weak passwords, poor website browsing awareness and susceptibility to phishing attacks. Regular penetration testing and vulnerability assessments are an important thing to consider as they will uncover any potential exploits before a real attack occurs. 

Common Infiltration Tactics Used By Hackers

  • Phishing efforts to test the strength of your company’s network and employee vulnerability. Phishing accounts for 67% of malware deliveries across all industries. Attempts are typically sent via employee emails and fake software update messages in hopes employees will click on links resulting in malware installs.
  • Embedding viruses and monitoring malware in email attachments sent to employees. Many emails look to be from real colleagues and external vendors and can be easy to fall prey to.
  • Malware downloads from websites. Often phishing efforts include links to legit-looking websites, so the employee feels safer downloading than from an email.
  • Use of company email addresses or social media posing as superiors to gain network or system administrator privileges or to blackmail employees.

Are you interested in understanding how your business might be vulnerable to cyber attacks?
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