When malicious hackers disable your business and demand a ransom, should you pay up? Many firms do out of desperation, turning to intermediaries to help broker the deal. But law enforcement says this just makes things worse.

Norsk Hydro, a global aluminium producer, was hit with a devastating ransomware attack leading to 22,000 computers being hit across 170 sites in 40 countries. The entire workforce of 35,000 people had to resort to pen and paper, and although some production lines were switched to manual functions, many lines had to stop. Although this was the case, the company refused to pay the hackers and even told the outside world the details of the situation. Many businesses secretly pay the attackers in an attempt to save the business, but the CIO of Norsk Hydro, Jo De Vliegher, says this is the worst thing you can do. He says “companies need to understand that if you continue to pay a ransom it perpetuates the crime and encourages the criminals to commit further crimes”.

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