Dame Barbara Woodward Calls for an International Response to the Global Ransomware Threat

Dame Barbara Woodward Calls for an International Response to the Global Ransomware Threat

Dame Barbara Woodward Calls for an International Response to the Global Ransomware Threat

An international response to the global ransomware threat is necessary to enhance resilience.

In a speech delivered at the UN Security Council meeting in New York on Thursday, Dame Barbara Woodward, the UK’s lead at the UN Security Council, highlighted the severity of the current global ransomware threats and the potential impact on essential government functions and public services if a successful attack were to occur.

“Any state can be a victim of ransomware. This is why an international response is needed to constrict the ecosystem facilitating it and to enable all states to increase their resilience and their response capability,” stated Dame Barbara Woodward, UK Representative to the UN.

In light of the growing threats, the UK is assuming a leadership role alongside Singapore as co-chairs of the Counter Ransomware Initiative, aiming to develop and implement robust national defense strategies.

Woodward also pointed out the potential danger posed by AI, noting that “malicious and irresponsible actors can exploit vulnerabilities in AI systems” as part of their attack methods. She emphasized the need for a deeper understanding of how cyber threats will evolve due to AI and to identify opportunities where AI can enhance security.

Andy Ward, VP International for Absolute Security, responded to the news by commenting: “Ransomware attacks do not discriminate across any organization or sector, posing a significant concern due to increasing volumes of sensitive data, remote devices, and network access points. Given the certainty of ransomware attacks, organizations must implement both preventative and recovery-focused cybersecurity measures as part of a policy of cyber resilience. Achieving this involves ensuring clear visibility and effective control over networks, and demanding a robust framework to improve network supervision and establish a solid defensive stance to remain resilient.”

Cyber expert Suid Adeyanju, CEO of RiverSafe, also remarked: “Cybercriminals are persistently using ransomware to target critical national infrastructure, posing a detrimental risk to businesses and citizens that aren’t sufficiently prepared. In response to these escalating attacks, organizations must increase their threat intelligence, adopting a comprehensive strategy that blends advanced technologies and heightened observability.”

The growing threat of ransomware requires a concerted international effort to bolster resilience and response capabilities. The UK, in collaboration with global partners, is taking proactive steps to address this challenge, recognizing the critical role of both human expertise and advanced technologies in securing the digital landscape.

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Anas Bouargane

Business Expert

Anas is the founder of CEF Académie, a platform that provides guidance and support for those willing to study in France. He previously interned at Unissey. Anas holds a bachelor degree in economics, finance and management from the University of Toulon.

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