Attacks Ransomware, who encrypt a computer's files and demand ransom for decrypting them, have seen a dramatic increase during pandemic. The average ransom payment increased from $ 41.000 in the third quarter of 2019 to $ 234.000 in 2020, according to the company Coveware.
Now the Coalition, a start-up security company in cyberspace, has seen an increase in demand for its services. This fall, it reached $ 100 million in annual premium revenue, up from $ 50 million a year ago.
The rise of ransomware attacks has begun to worry experts. "We only saw a $ 100 million ransom note last week," said the Coalition CEO. Joshua Motta. Last month, one hacker allegedly stole medical records from a psychotherapy center in Finland, then contacted mental health patients and demanded money from each individual. In September, one ransomware attack in a German hospital led to the death of a patient.
The Coalition provides cybersecurity for a total of 27.000 small and medium-sized businesses, including churches, farms, holiday homes, venture capital firms and a popular spicy sauce company. The insurances it provides cover incidents ranging from ransomware attacks to a company's online over-indebtedness. To cover $ 1 million in potential losses, the Coalition charges premiums of $ 1.500 to $ 3.000 per year. In May, the company, which employs 150 people, raised $ 90 million in a $ 900 million valuation.
Motta, 37, founded Coalition in March 2017. Prior to Coalition, he worked for organizations such as CIAThe Goldman Sachs and CloudFlare, a $ 20 billion infrastructure and web security company.
In the US cyber insurance market, the biggest players are companies like AIG, Chubb and Axa XL. The Coalition is trying to differentiate itself from them by using more technology, says Motta.
Coalition also uses technology to reduce customer service. The startup refuses to provide cyber security to standalone IT companies because Motta considers the risks too high. If an IT company is hit by a cyber attack, all of its customers are often in risk.