Hackers beware: Master the art of negotiation and come out victorious

January 16, 2024
1 min read

Victims of ransomware are turning to professional negotiators to help reduce the cost of the ransom, or even avoid paying it altogether. Negotiators, such as in-house response teams, insurers, security firms or lawyers, can work with cyber criminals to reduce the ransom amount or delay payment. They can ask open-ended questions to determine the underlying motives of the hackers and formulate a cost-benefit analysis to establish alternatives. Negotiators should engage with hackers sooner rather than later to prevent escalations, as hackers may use time pressure to compel victims to pay up. While paying the ransom is often the quickest way to recover data and resume operations, it does not guarantee that hackers will unlock systems or not demand more money in the future. Some authorities are outlawing the payment of ransoms, however, businesses may have little choice when it comes to saving their data, operations or reputation.

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