New analysis of ransomware incidents reported to the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) in the first half of 2021 show a massive rise when compared to 2020.

Utilizing incident data reported to the ICO, British cyber security organization CybSafe has determined that 22% of all cyber incidents in the first six months of 2021 were attributed to ransomware attacks. This is double the 11% found in the first half of 2020.

This doubling of the number of reported attacks is troubling, but not surprising, as 35% of all U.K. businesses experience ransomware attacks (with the global average being 37%), according to Sophos’ State of Ransomware 2021 report. Additionally, 63% of U.K. businesses affected by ransomware reported their organizations’ brand was negatively impacted, according to CyberReason’s Ransomware: The True Cost To Business report, making ransomware a legitimate threat to business longevity in the U.K.

CybSafe’s analysis found that phishing was the primary cause of all cyber breaches reported to the ICO in the first half of this year, making up 40% of all successful attacks. Phishing continues to be a thorn in cybersecurity’s side, with some percentage of attacks finding their way past security solutions and into the Inbox where an unsuspecting user is fooled into clicking on malicious links and attachments.

It’s only through continual Security Awareness Training that users will elevate their state of vigilance, always being on the lookout for malicious content and reducing whatever threat surface remains by the time an attack reaches the Inbox.