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Ransomware

Malicious software used in ransom demands

Ransomware is a type of malware from cryptovirology that threatens to publish the victim's personal data or perpetually block access to it unless a ransom is paid. While some simple ransomware may lock the system so that it is not difficult for a knowledgeable person to reverse, more advanced malware uses a technique called cryptoviral extortion. It encrypts the victim's files, making them inaccessible, and demands a ransom payment to decrypt them.[1][2][3][4] In a properly implemented cryptoviral extortion attack, recovering the files without the decryption key is an intractable problem – and difficult to trace digital currencies such as paysafecard or Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies that are used for the ransoms, making tracing and prosecuting the perpetrators difficult.

Ransomware attacks are typically carried out using a Trojan disguised as a legitimate file that the user is tricked into downloading or opening when it arrives as an email attachment. However, one high-profile example, the WannaCry worm, traveled automatically between computers without user interaction.[5]

Starting as early as 1989 with the first documented ransomware known as the AIDS trojan, the use of ransomware scams has grown internationally.[6][7][8] There were 181.5 million ransomware attacks in the first six months of 2018. This record marks a 229% increase over this same time frame in 2017.[9] In June 2014, vendor McAfee released data showing that it had collected more than double the number of ransomware samples that quarter than it had in the same quarter of the previous year.[10]CryptoLocker was particularly successful, procuring an estimated US$3 million before it was taken down by authorities,[11] and CryptoWall was estimated by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to have accrued over US$18 million by June 2015.[12] In 2020, the IC3 received 2,474 complaints identified as ransomware with adjusted losses of over $29.1 million. The losses could be more than that according to FBI.[13]

Operation[edit]

The concept of file-encrypting ransomware was invented and implemented by Young and Yung at Columbia University and was presented at the 1996 IEEE Security & Privacy conference. It is called cryptoviral extortion and it was inspired by the fictional facehugger in the movie Alien.[14] Cryptoviral extortion is the following three-round protocol carried out between the attacker and the victim.[1]

  1. [attackervictim] The attacker generates a key pair and places the corresponding public key in the malware. The malware is released.
  2. [victimattacker] To carry out the cryptoviral extortion attack, the malware generates a random symmetric key and encrypts the victim's data with it. It uses the public key in the malware to encrypt the symmetric key. This is known as hybrid encryption and it results in a small asymmetric ciphertext as well as the symmetric ciphertext of the victim's data. It zeroizes the symmetric key and the original plaintext data to prevent recovery. It puts up a message to the user that includes the asymmetric ciphertext and how to pay the ransom. The victim sends the asymmetric ciphertext and e-money to the attacker.
  3. [attackervictim] The attacker receives the payment, deciphers the asymmetric ciphertext with the attacker's private key, and sends the symmetric key to the victim. The victim deciphers the encrypted data with the needed symmetric key thereby completing the cryptovirology attack.

The symmetric key is randomly generated and will not assist other victims. At no point is the attacker's private key exposed to victims and the victim need only send a very small ciphertext (the encrypted symmetric-cipher key) to the attacker.

Ransomware attacks are typically carried out using a Trojan, entering a system through, for example, a malicious attachment, embedded link in a Phishing email, or a vulnerability in a network service. The program then runs a payload, which locks the system in some fashion, or claims to lock the system but does not (e.g., a scareware program). Payloads may display a fake warning purportedly by an entity such as a law enforcement agency, falsely claiming that the system has been used for illegal activities, contains content such as pornography and "pirated" media.[15][16][17]

Some payloads consist simply of an application designed to lock or restrict the system until payment is made, typically by setting the Windows Shell to itself,[18] or even modifying the master boot record and/or partition table to prevent the operating system from booting until it is repaired.[19] The most sophisticated payloads encrypt files, with many using strong encryption to encrypt the victim's files in such a way that only the malware author has the needed decryption key.[1][20][21]

Payment is virtually always the goal, and the victim is coerced into paying for the ransomware to be removed either by supplying a program that can decrypt the files, or by sending an unlock code that undoes the payload's changes. While the attacker may simply take the money without returning the victim's files, it is in the attacker's best interest to perform the decryption as agreed, since victims will stop sending payments if it becomes known that they serve no purpose. A key element in making ransomware work for the attacker is a convenient payment system that is hard to trace. A range of such payment methods have been used, including wire transfers, premium-rate text messages,[22] pre-paid voucher services such as paysafecard,[6][23][24] and the Bitcoincryptocurrency.[25][26][27]

In May 2020, vendor Sophos reported that the global average cost to remediate a ransomware attack (considering downtime, people time, device cost, network cost, lost opportunity and ransom paid) was $761,106. Ninety-five percent of organizations that paid the ransom had their data restored.[28]

History[edit]

See also: History of computer viruses and History of malware

Encrypting ransomware[edit]

The first known malware extortion attack, the "AIDS Trojan" written by Joseph Popp in 1989, had a design failure so severe it was not necessary to pay the extortionist at all. Its payload hid the files on the hard drive and encrypted only their names, and displayed a message claiming that the user's license to use a certain piece of software had expired. The user was asked to pay US$189 to "PC Cyborg Corporation" in order to obtain a repair tool even though the decryption key could be extracted from the code of the Trojan. The Trojan was also known as "PC Cyborg". Popp was declared mentally unfit to stand trial for his actions, but he promised to donate the profits from the malware to fund AIDS research.[29]

The idea of abusing anonymous cash systems to safely collect ransom from human kidnapping was introduced in 1992 by Sebastiaan von Solms and David Naccache.[30] This electronic money collection method was also proposed for cryptoviral extortion attacks.[1] In the von Solms-Naccache scenario a newspaper publication was used (since bitcoin ledgers did not exist at the time the paper was written).

The notion of using public key cryptography for data kidnapping attacks was introduced in 1996 by Adam L. Young and Moti Yung. Young and Yung critiqued the failed AIDS Information Trojan that relied on symmetric cryptography alone, the fatal flaw being that the decryption key could be extracted from the Trojan, and implemented an experimental proof-of-concept cryptovirus on a Macintosh SE/30 that used RSA and the Tiny Encryption Algorithm (TEA) to hybrid encrypt the victim's data. Since public key cryptography is used, the virus only contains the encryption key. The attacker keeps the corresponding private decryption key private. Young and Yung's original experimental cryptovirus had the victim send the asymmetric ciphertext to the attacker who deciphers it and returns the symmetric decryption key it contains to the victim for a fee. Long before electronic money existed Young and Yung proposed that electronic money could be extorted through encryption as well, stating that "the virus writer can effectively hold all of the money ransom until half of it is given to him. Even if the e-money was previously encrypted by the user, it is of no use to the user if it gets encrypted by a cryptovirus".[1] They referred to these attacks as being "cryptoviral extortion", an overt attack that is part of a larger class of attacks in a field called cryptovirology, which encompasses both overt and covert attacks.[1] The cryptoviral extortion protocol was inspired by the parasitic relationship between H. R. Giger's facehugger and its host in the movie Alien.[1][14]

Examples of extortionate ransomware became prominent in May 2005.[31] By mid-2006, Trojans such as Gpcode, TROJ.RANSOM.A, Archiveus, Krotten, Cryzip, and MayArchive began utilizing more sophisticated RSA encryption schemes, with ever-increasing key-sizes. Gpcode.AG, which was detected in June 2006, was encrypted with a 660-bit RSA public key.[32] In June 2008, a variant known as Gpcode.AK was detected. Using a 1024-bit RSA key, it was believed large enough to be computationally infeasible to break without a concerted distributed effort.[33][34][35][36]

Encrypting ransomware returned to prominence in late 2013 with the propagation of CryptoLocker—using the Bitcoindigital currency platform to collect ransom money. In December 2013, ZDNet estimated based on Bitcoin transaction information that between 15 October and 18 December, the operators of CryptoLocker had procured about US$27 million from infected users.[37] The CryptoLocker technique was widely copied in the months following, including CryptoLocker 2.0 (thought not to be related to CryptoLocker), CryptoDefense (which initially contained a major design flaw that stored the private key on the infected system in a user-retrievable location, due to its use of Windows' built-in encryption APIs),[26][38][39][40] and the August 2014 discovery of a Trojan specifically targeting network-attached storage devices produced by Synology.[41] In January 2015, it was reported that ransomware-styled attacks have occurred against individual websites via hacking, and through ransomware designed to target Linux-based web servers.[42][43][44]

In some infections, there is a two-stage payload, common in many malware systems. The user is tricked into running a script, which downloads the main virus and executes it. In early versions of the dual-payload system, the script was contained in a Microsoft Office document with an attached VBScript macro, or in a windows scripting facility (WSF) file. As detection systems started blocking these first stage payloads, the Microsoft Malware Protection Center identified a trend away toward LNK files with self-contained Microsoft Windows PowerShell scripts.[45] In 2016, PowerShell was found to be involved in nearly 40% of endpoint security incidents,[46]

Some ransomware strains have used proxies tied to Torhidden services to connect to their command and control servers, increasing the difficulty of tracing the exact location of the criminals.[47][48] Furthermore, dark web vendors have increasingly started to offer the technology as a service, wherein ransomware is sold, ready for deployment on victims' machines, on a subscription basis, similarly to Adobe Creative Cloud or Office 365.[48][49][50]

Symantec has classified ransomware to be the most dangerous cyber threat.[51]

On 28 September 2020, the computer systems at US’ biggest healthcare provider the Universal Health Services, was hit by a ransomware attack. The UHS chain from different locations reported noticing problems, with some locations reporting locked computers and phone systems from early Sunday (27 September).[52][51]

Non-encrypting ransomware[edit]

In August 2010, Russian authorities arrested nine individuals connected to a ransomware Trojan known as WinLock. Unlike the previous Gpcode Trojan, WinLock did not use encryption. Instead, WinLock trivially restricted access to the system by displaying pornographic images and asked users to send a premium-rate SMS (costing around US$10) to receive a code that could be used to unlock their machines. The scam hit numerous users across Russia and neighbouring countries—reportedly earning the group over US$16 million.[17][53]

In 2011, a ransomware Trojan surfaced that imitated the Windows Product Activation notice, and informed users that a system's Windows installation had to be re-activated due to "[being a] victim of fraud". An online activation option was offered (like the actual Windows activation process), but was unavailable, requiring the user to call one of six international numbers to input a 6-digit code. While the malware claimed that this call would be free, it was routed through a rogue operator in a country with high international phone rates, who placed the call on hold, causing the user to incur large international long distance charges.[15]

In February 2013, a ransomware Trojan based on the Stamp.EK exploit kit surfaced; the malware was distributed via sites hosted on the project hosting services SourceForge and GitHub that claimed to offer "fake nude pics" of celebrities.[54] In July 2013, an OS X-specific ransomware Trojan surfaced, which displays a web page that accuses the user of downloading pornography. Unlike its Windows-based counterparts, it does not block the entire computer, but simply exploits the behaviour of the web browser itself to frustrate attempts to close the page through normal means.[55]

In July 2013, a 21-year-old man from Virginia, whose computer coincidentally did contain pornographic photographs of underage girls with whom he had conducted sexualized communications, turned himself in to police after receiving and being deceived by FBI MoneyPak Ransomware accusing him of possessing child pornography. An investigation discovered the incriminating files, and the man was charged with child sexual abuse and possession of child pornography.[56]

Exfiltration (Leakware / Doxware)[edit]

The converse of ransomware is a cryptovirology attack invented by Adam L. Young that threatens to publish stolen information from the victim's computer system rather than deny the victim access to it.[57] In a leakware attack, malware exfiltrates sensitive host data either to the attacker or alternatively, to remote instances of the malware, and the attacker threatens to publish the victim's data unless a ransom is paid. The attack was presented at West Point in 2003 and was summarized in the book Malicious Cryptography as follows, "The attack differs from the extortion attack in the following way. In the extortion attack, the victim is denied access to its own valuable information and has to pay to get it back, where in the attack that is presented here the victim retains access to the information but its disclosure is at the discretion of the computer virus".[58] The attack is rooted in game theory and was originally dubbed "non-zero sum games and survivable malware". The attack can yield monetary gain in cases where the malware acquires access to information that may damage the victim user or organization, e.g., the reputational damage that could result from publishing proof that the attack itself was a success.

Common targets for exfiltration include:

  • third party information stored by the primary victim (such as customer account information or health records);
  • information proprietary to the victim (such as trade secrets and product information)
  • embarrassing information (such as the victim's health information or information about the victim's personal past)

Exfiltration attacks are usually targeted, with a curated victim list, and often preliminary surveillance of the victim's systems to find potential data targets and weaknesses.[59][60]

Mobile ransomware[edit]

With the increased popularity of ransomware on PC platforms, ransomware targeting mobile operating systems has also proliferated. Typically, mobile ransomware payloads are blockers, as there is little incentive to encrypt data since it can be easily restored via online synchronization.[61] Mobile ransomware typically targets the Android platform, as it allows applications to be installed from third-party sources.[61][62] The payload is typically distributed as an APK file installed by an unsuspecting user; it may attempt to display a blocking message over top of all other applications,[62] while another used a form of clickjacking to cause the user to give it "device administrator" privileges to achieve deeper access to the system.[63]

Different tactics have been used on iOS devices, such as exploiting iCloud accounts and using the Find My iPhone system to lock access to the device.[64] On iOS 10.3, Apple patched a bug in the handling of JavaScript pop-up windows in Safari that had been exploited by ransomware websites.[65] It recently[when?] has been shown that ransomware may also target ARM architectures like those that can be found in various Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, such as Industrial IoT edge devices.[66]

In August 2019 researchers demonstrated it's possible to infect DSLR cameras with ransomware.[67] Digital cameras often use Picture Transfer Protocol (PTP - standard protocol used to transfer files.) Researchers found that it was possible to exploit vulnerabilities in the protocol to infect target camera(s) with ransomware (or execute any arbitrary code). This attack was presented at the Defcon security conference in Las Vegas as a proof of concept attack (not as actual armed malware).

Notable attack targets[edit]

Further information: List of cyberattacks § Ransomware attacks

Notable software packages[edit]

Reveton[edit]

In 2012, a major ransomware Trojan known as Reveton began to spread. Based on the Citadel Trojan (which itself, is based on the Zeus Trojan), its payload displays a warning purportedly from a law enforcement agency claiming that the computer has been used for illegal activities, such as downloading unlicensed software or child pornography. Due to this behaviour, it is commonly referred to as the "Police Trojan".[68][69][70] The warning informs the user that to unlock their system, they would have to pay a fine using a voucher from an anonymous prepaid cash service such as Ukash or paysafecard. To increase the illusion that the computer is being tracked by law enforcement, the screen also displays the computer's IP address, while some versions display footage from a victim's webcam to give the illusion that the user is being recorded.[6][71]

Reveton initially began spreading in various European countries in early 2012.[6] Variants were localized with templates branded with the logos of different law enforcement organizations based on the user's country; for example, variants used in the United Kingdom contained the branding of organizations such as the Metropolitan Police Service and the Police National E-Crime Unit. Another version contained the logo of the royalty collection societyPRS for Music, which specifically accused the user of illegally downloading music.[72] In a statement warning the public about the malware, the Metropolitan Police clarified that they would never lock a computer in such a way as part of an investigation.[6][16]

In May 2012, Trend Micro threat researchers discovered templates for variations for the United States and Canada, suggesting that its authors may have been planning to target users in North America.[73] By August 2012, a new variant of Reveton began to spread in the United States, claiming to require the payment of a $200 fine to the FBI using a MoneyPak card.[7][8][71] In February 2013, a Russian citizen was arrested in Dubai by Spanish authorities for his connection to a crime ring that had been using Reveton; ten other individuals were arrested on money laundering charges.[74] In August 2014, Avast Software reported that it had found new variants of Reveton that also distribute password-stealing malware as part of its payload.[75]

CryptoLocker[edit]

Main article: CryptoLocker

Encrypting ransomware reappeared in September 2013 with a Trojan known as CryptoLocker, which generated a 2048-bit RSA key pair and uploaded in turn to a command-and-control server, and used to encrypt files using a whitelist of specific file extensions. The malware threatened to delete the private key if a payment of Bitcoin or a pre-paid cash voucher was not made within 3 days of the infection. Due to the extremely large key size it uses, analysts and those affected by the Trojan considered CryptoLocker extremely difficult to repair.[25][76][77][78] Even after the deadline passed, the private key could still be obtained using an online tool, but the price would increase to 10 BTC—which cost approximately US$2300 as of November 2013.[79][80]

CryptoLocker was isolated by the seizure of the Gameover ZeuSbotnet as part of Operation Tovar, as officially announced by the U.S. Department of Justice on 2 June 2014. The Department of Justice also publicly issued an indictment against the Russian hacker Evgeniy Bogachev for his alleged involvement in the botnet.[81][82] It was estimated that at least US$3 million was extorted with the malware before the shutdown.[11]

CryptoLocker.F and TorrentLocker[edit]

In September 2014, a wave of ransomware Trojans surfaced that first targeted users in Australia, under the names CryptoWall and CryptoLocker (which is, as with CryptoLocker 2.0, unrelated to the original CryptoLocker). The Trojans spread via fraudulent e-mails claiming to be failed parcel delivery notices from Australia Post; to evade detection by automatic e-mail scanners that follow all links on a page to scan for malware, this variant was designed to require users to visit a web page and enter a code before the payload is actually downloaded, preventing such automated processes from being able to scan the payload. Symantec determined that these new variants, which it identified as CryptoLocker.F, were again, unrelated to the original CryptoLocker due to differences in their operation.[83][84] A notable victim of the Trojans was the Australian Broadcasting Corporation; live programming on its television news channelABC News 24 was disrupted for half an hour and shifted to Melbourne studios due to a CryptoWall infection on computers at its Sydney studio.[85][86][87]

Another Trojan in this wave, TorrentLocker, initially contained a design flaw comparable to CryptoDefense; it used the same keystream for every infected computer, making the encryption trivial to overcome. However, this flaw was later fixed.[38] By late-November 2014, it was estimated that over 9,000 users had been infected by TorrentLocker in Australia alone, trailing only Turkey with 11,700 infections.[88]

CryptoWall[edit]

Another major ransomware Trojan targeting Windows, CryptoWall, first appeared in 2014. One strain of CryptoWall was distributed as part of a malvertising campaign on the Zedo ad network in late-September 2014 that targeted several major websites; the ads redirected to rogue websites that used browser plugin exploits to download the payload. A Barracuda Networks researcher also noted that the payload was signed with a digital signature in an effort to appear trustworthy to security software.[89] CryptoWall 3.0 used a payload written in JavaScript as part of an email attachment, which downloads executables disguised as JPG images. To further evade detection, the malware creates new instances of explorer.exe and svchost.exe to communicate with its servers. When encrypting files, the malware also deletes volume shadow copies and installs spyware that steals passwords and Bitcoin wallets.[90]

The FBI reported in June 2015 that nearly 1,000 victims had contacted the bureau's Internet Crime Complaint Center to report CryptoWall infections, and estimated losses of at least $18 million.[12]

The most recent version, CryptoWall 4.0, enhanced its code to avoid antivirus detection, and encrypts not only the data in files but also the file names.[91]

Fusob[edit]

Fusob is one of the major mobile ransomware families. Between April 2015 and March 2016, about 56 percent of accounted mobile ransomware was Fusob.[92]

Like a typical mobile ransomware, it employs scare tactics to extort people to pay a ransom.[93] The program pretends to be an accusatory authority, demanding the victim to pay a fine from $100 to $200 USD or otherwise face a fictitious charge. Rather surprisingly, Fusob suggests using iTunes gift cards for payment. Also, a timer clicking down on the screen adds to the users’ anxiety as well.

In order to infect devices, Fusob masquerades as a pornographic video player. Thus, victims, thinking it is harmless, unwittingly download Fusob.[94]

When Fusob is installed, it first checks the language used in the device. If it uses Russian or certain Eastern European languages, Fusob does nothing. Otherwise, it proceeds on to lock the device and demand ransom. Among victims, about 40% of them are in Germany with the United Kingdom and the United States following with 14.5% and 11.4% respectively.

Fusob has lots in common with Small, which is another major family of mobile ransomware. They represented over 93% of mobile ransomware between 2015 and 2016.

WannaCry[edit]

Main article: WannaCry ransomware attack

In May 2017, the WannaCry ransomware attack spread through the Internet, using an exploit vector named EternalBlue, which was allegedly leaked from the U.S. National Security Agency. The ransomware attack, unprecedented in scale,[95] infected more than 230,000 computers in over 150 countries,[96] using 20 different languages to demand money from users using Bitcoin cryptocurrency. WannaCry demanded US$300 per computer.[97] The attack affected Telefónica and several other large companies in Spain, as well as parts of the British National Health Service (NHS), where at least 16 hospitals had to turn away patients or cancel scheduled operations,[98]FedEx, Deutsche Bahn, Honda,[99]Renault, as well as the Russian Interior Ministry and Russian telecom MegaFon.[100] The attackers gave their victims a 7-day deadline from the day their computers got infected, after which the encrypted files would be deleted.[101]

Petya[edit]

Main article: Petya (malware)

See also: 2017 cyberattacks on Ukraine

Petya was first discovered in March 2016; unlike other forms of encrypting ransomware, the malware aimed to infect the master boot record, installing a payload which encrypts the file tables of the NTFS file system the next time that the infected system boots, blocking the system from booting into Windows at all until the ransom is paid. Check Point reported that despite what it believed to be an innovative evolution in ransomware design, it had resulted in relatively-fewer infections than other ransomware active around the same time frame.[102]

On 27 June 2017, a heavily modified version of Petya was used for a global cyberattack primarily targeting Ukraine (but affecting many countries[103]). This version had been modified to propagate using the same EternalBlue exploit that was used by WannaCry. Due to another design change, it is also unable to actually unlock a system after the ransom is paid; this led to security analysts speculating that the attack was not meant to generate illicit profit, but to simply cause disruption.[104][105]

Bad Rabbit[edit]

On 24 October 2017, some users in Russia and Ukraine reported a new ransomware attack, named "Bad Rabbit", which follows a similar pattern to WannaCry and Petya by encrypting the user's file tables and then demands a Bitcoin payment to decrypt them. ESET believed the ransomware to have been distributed by a bogus update to Adobe Flash software.[106] Among agencies that were affected by the ransomware were: Interfax, Odesa International Airport, Kyiv Metro, and the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine.[107] As it used corporate network structures to spread, the ransomware was also discovered in other countries, including Turkey, Germany, Poland, Japan, South Korea, and the United States.[108] Experts believed the ransomware attack was tied to the Petya attack in Ukraine (especially because Bad Rabbit's code has many overlapping and analogical elements to the code of Petya/NotPetya,[109] appending to CrowdStrike Bad Rabbit and NotPetya's DLL (dynamic link library) share 67 percent of the same code[110]) though the only identity to the culprits are the names of characters from the Game of Thrones series embedded within the code.[108]

Security experts found that the ransomware did not use the EternalBlue exploit to spread, and a simple method to inoculate an unaffected machine running older Windows versions was found by 24 October 2017.[111][112] Further, the sites that had been used to spread the bogus Flash updating have gone offline or removed the problematic files within a few days of its discovery, effectively killing off the spread of Bad Rabbit.[108]

SamSam[edit]

In 2016, a new strain of ransomware emerged that was targeting JBoss servers.[113] This strain, named "SamSam", was found to bypass the process of phishing or illicit downloads in favor of exploiting vulnerabilities on weak servers.[114] The malware uses a Remote Desktop Protocolbrute-force attack to guess weak passwords until one is broken. The virus has been behind attacks on government and healthcare targets, with notable hacks occurring against the town of Farmington, New Mexico, the Colorado Department of Transportation, Davidson County, North Carolina, and most recently, a major breach of security on the infrastructure of Atlanta.[114]

Mohammad Mehdi Shah Mansouri (born in Qom, Iran in 1991) and Faramarz Shahi Savandi (born in Shiraz, Iran, in 1984) are wanted by the FBI for allegedly launching SamSam ransomware.[115] The two have allegedly made $6 million from extortion and caused over $30 million in damages using the malware.[116]

[edit]

On May 7, 2021 a cyberattack was executed on the US Colonial Pipeline. The Federal Bureau of Investigation identified DarkSide as the perpetrator of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack, perpetrated by malicious code, that led to a voluntary shutdown of the main pipeline supplying 45% of fuel to the East Coast of the United States. The attack was described as the worst cyberattack to date on U.S. critical infrastructure. DarkSide successfully extorted about 75 Bitcoin (almost US$5 million) from Colonial Pipeline. U.S. officials are investigating whether the attack was purely criminal or took place with the involvement of the Russian government or another state sponsor. Following the attack, DarkSide posted a statement claiming that "We are apolitical, we do not participate in geopolitics...Our goal is to make money and not creating problems for society."

On May 10, SentinelOne published an analysis of the DarkSide Ransomware attack.

In May 2021, the FBI and Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency issued a joint alert urging the owners and operators of critical infrastructure to take certain steps to reduce their vulnerability to DarkSide ransomware and ransomware in general.

Syskey[edit]

Syskey is a utility that was included with Windows NT-based operating systems to encrypt the user account database, optionally with a password. The tool has sometimes been effectively used as ransomware during technical support scams—where a caller with remote access to the computer may use the tool to lock the user out of their computer with a password known only to them.[117] Syskey was removed from later versions of Windows 10 and Windows Server in 2017, due to being obsolete and "known to be used by hackers as part of ransomware scams".[118][119]

Ransomware-as-a-service[edit]

Ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) became a notable method after the Russia-based[120] or Russian-speaking[121] group REvil staged operations against several targets, including the Brazil-based JBS S.A. in May 2021, and the US-based Kaseya Limited in July 2021.[122] After a July 9, 2021 phone call between United States president Joe Biden and Russian president Vladimir Putin, Biden told the press, "I made it very clear to him that the United States expects when a ransomware operation is coming from his soil even though it’s not sponsored by the state, we expect them to act if we give them enough information to act on who that is." Biden later added that the United States would take the group's servers down if Putin did not.[123][124] Four days later, REvil websites and other infrastructure vanished from the internet.[125]

Mitigation[edit]

If an attack is suspected or detected in its early stages, it takes some time for encryption to take place; immediate removal of the malware (a relatively simple process) before it has completed would stop further damage to data, without salvaging any already lost.[126][127]

Security experts have suggested precautionary measures for dealing with ransomware. Using software or other security policies to block known payloads from launching will help to prevent infection, but will not protect against all attacks[25][128] As such, having a proper backup solution is a critical component to defending against ransomware. Note that, because many ransomware attackers will not only encrypt the victim's live machine but it will also attempt to delete any hot backups stored locally or on accessible over the network on a NAS, it's also critical to maintain "offline" backups of data stored in locations inaccessible from any potentially infected computer, such as external storage drives or devices that do not have any access to any network (including the Internet), prevents them from being accessed by the ransomware. Moreover, if using a NAS or Cloud storage, then the computer should have append-only permission to the destination storage, such that it cannot delete or overwrite previous backups. According to comodo, applying two Attack Surface Reduction on OS/Kernal provides materially reduced attack surface which results in heightened security posture.[129][130][131]

Installing security updates issued by software vendors can mitigate the vulnerabilities leveraged by certain strains to propagate.[132][133][134][135][136] Other measures include cyber hygiene − exercising caution when opening e-mail attachments and links, network segmentation, and keeping critical computers isolated from networks.[137][138] Furthermore, to mitigate the spread of ransomware measures of infection control can be applied.[139] Such may include disconnecting infected machines from all networks, educational programs,[140] effective communication channels, malware surveillance[original research?] and ways of collective participation[139]

File system defenses against ransomware[edit]

A number of file systems keep snapshots of the data they hold, which can be used to recover the contents of files from a time prior to the ransomware attack in the event the ransomware does not disable it.

  • On Windows, the Volume shadow copy (VSS) is often used to store backups of data; ransomware often targets these snapshots to prevent recovery and therefore it is often advisable to disable user access to the user tool VSSadmin.exe to reduce the risk that ransomware can disable or delete past copies.
  • On Windows 10, users can add specific directories or files to Controlled Folder Access in Windows Defender to protect them from ransomware.[141] It is advised to add backup and other important directories to Controlled Folder Access.
  • Unless malware gains root on the ZFS host system in deploying an attack coded to issue ZFS administrative commands, file servers running ZFS are broadly immune to ransomware, because ZFS is capable of snapshotting even a large file system many times an hour, and these snapshots are immutable (read only) and easily rolled back or files recovered in the event of data corruption.[142] In general, only an administrator can delete (but cannot modify) snapshots.

File decryption and recovery[edit]

There are a number of tools intended specifically to decrypt files locked by ransomware, although successful recovery may not be possible.[2][143] If the same encryption key is used for all files, decryption tools use files for which there are both uncorrupted backups and encrypted copies (a known-plaintext attack in the jargon of cryptanalysis. But, it only works when the cipher the attacker used was weak to begin with, being vulnerable to known-plaintext attack); recovery of the key, if it is possible, may take several days.[144] Free ransomware decryption tools can help decrypt files encrypted by the following forms of ransomware: AES_NI, Alcatraz Locker, Apocalypse, BadBlock, Bart, BTCWare, Crypt888, CryptoMix, CrySiS, EncrypTile, FindZip, Globe, Hidden Tear, Jigsaw, LambdaLocker, Legion, NoobCrypt, Stampado, SZFLocker, TeslaCrypt, XData.[145]

In addition, old copies of files may exist on the disk, which has been previously deleted. In some cases, these deleted versions may still be recoverable using software designed for that purpose.

Growth[edit]

Ransomware malicious software was first confined to one or two countries in Eastern Europe and subsequently spread across the Atlantic to the United States and Canada.[146] The number of cyberattacks during 2020 was double that of 2019.[147] The first versions of this type of malware used various techniques to disable the computers[146] by locking the victims system machine (Locker Ransomware) [133]. Ransomware uses different tactics to extort victims. One of the most common methods is locking the device's screen by displaying a message from a branch of local law enforcement alleging that the victim must pay a fine for illegal activity. The ransomware may request a payment by sending an SMS message to a premium rate number. Some similar variants of the malware display pornographic image content and demanded payment for the removal of it.[146]

By 2011 ransomware tactics had evolved. Attackers began using electronic payment methods as well as language localization to the affected device.

Corporations, private entities, governments, and hospitals can be affected by these malicious attacks. In 2016, a significant uptick in ransomware attacks on hospitals was noted. According to the 2017 Internet Security Threat Report from Symantec Corp, ransomware affected not only IT systems but also patient care, clinical operations, and billing. Online criminals may be motivated by the money available and sense of urgency within the healthcare system.[148]

Ransomware is growing rapidly across the internet users but also for the IoT environment[146] which creates a challenging problem to the INFOSEC while increasing the attack surface area. They are evolving into more sophisticated attacks and, they are becoming more resistant; at the same time, they are also more accessible than ever. Today, for a cheap price, the attackers have access to ransomware as a service. The big problem is that millions of dollars are lost by some organizations and industries that have decided to pay, such as the Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center and the MedStar Health.[149] At the end, the pressure to offer services to the patients and keep their lives is so critical that they are forced to pay, and the attacker knows that. The problem here is that by paying the ransom, they are funding the cybercrime.

According to Symantec 2019 ISTR report, for the first time since 2013, in 2018 there was an observed decrease in ransomware activity with a drop of 20 percent. Before 2017, consumers were the preferred victims, but in 2017 this changed dramatically, it moved to the enterprises. In 2018 this path accelerated with 81 percent infections which represented a 12 percent increase.[150] The common distribution method today is based on email campaigns.

The first reported death following a ransomware attack was at a German hospital in October 2020.[151]

An effective and successful cyber awareness training program must be sponsored from the top of the organization with supporting policies and procedures which effectively outline ramifications of non-compliance, frequency of training and a process for acknowledgement of training. Without sponsorship from the “C-level” executives the training cannot be ignored.  Other factors that are key to a successful Cyber Awareness Training program is to establish a baseline identifying the level of knowledge of the organization to establish where the users are in their knowledge prior to training and after. Whichever approach an organization decides to implement, it is important that the organization has policies and procedures in place that provide training that is up to date, performed frequently and has the backing of the entire organization from the top down.

Investment in technology to detect and stop these threats must be maintained, but along with that we need to remember and focus on our weakest link, which is the user.

Criminal arrests and convictions[edit]

Zain Qaiser[edit]

A British student, Zain Qaiser, from Barking, London was jailed for more than six years at Kingston Crown Court for his ransomware attacks in 2019.[152] He is said to have been "the most prolific cyber criminal to be sentenced in the UK". He became active when he was only 17. He contacted the Russian controller of one of the most powerful attacks, believed to be the Lurk malware gang, and arranged for a split of his profits. He also contacted online criminals from China and the US to move the money. For about one and a half years, he posed as a legitimate supplier of online promotions of book advertising on some of the world's most visited legal pornography websites. Each of the adverts that was promoted on the websites contained the Reveton Ransomware strain of the malicious Angler Exploit Kit (AEK)[153] that seized control of the machine. Investigators discovered about £700,000 of earnings, although his network may have earned more than £4m. He may have hidden some money using cryptocurrencies. The ransomware would instruct victims to buy GreenDot MoneyPak vouchers, and enter the code in the Reveton panel displayed on the screen. This money entered a MoneyPak account managed by Qaiser, who would then deposit the voucher payments into an American co-conspirator's debit card—that of Raymond Odigie Uadiale, who was then a student at Florida International University during 2012 and 2013 and later worked for Microsoft. Uadiale would convert the money into Liberty Reserve digital currency and deposit it into Qaiser's Liberty Reserve account.[154]

A breakthrough in this case occurred in May 2013 when authorities from several countries seized the Liberty Reserve servers, obtaining access to all its transactions and account history. Qaiser was running encrypted virtual machines on his Macbook Pro with both Mac and Windows operating systems.[155] He could not be tried earlier because he was sectioned under the UK Mental Health Act at Goodmayes Hospital (where he was found to be using the hospital Wi-Fi to access his advertising sites.) His lawyer claimed that Qaiser had suffered from mental illness.[152] Russian police arrested 50 members of the Lurk malware gang in June 2016.[156] Uadiale, a naturalized US citizen of Nigerian descent, was jailed for 18 months.[157]

Freedom of speech challenges and criminal punishment[edit]

The publication of proof-of-concept attack code is common among academic researchers and vulnerability researchers. It teaches the nature of the threat, conveys the gravity of the issues, and enables countermeasures to be devised and put into place. However, lawmakers with the support of law-enforcement bodies are contemplating making the creation of ransomware illegal. In the state of Maryland, the original draft of HB 340 made it a felony to create ransomware, punishable by up to 10 years in prison.[158] However, this provision was removed from the final version of the bill.[159] A minor in Japan was arrested for creating and distributing ransomware code.[160] Young and Yung have had the ANSI C source code to a ransomware cryptotrojan on-line, at cryptovirology.com, since 2005 as part of a cryptovirology book being written. The source code to the cryptotrojan is still live on the Internet and is associated with a draft of Chapter 2.[161]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ abcdefgYoung, A.; M. Yung (1996). Cryptovirology: extortion-based security threats and countermeasures. IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy. pp. 129–140. doi:10.1109/SECPRI.1996.502676. ISBN .
  2. ^ abSchofield, Jack (28 July 2016). "How can I remove a ransomware infection?". The Guardian. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  3. ^Mimoso, Michael (28 March 2016). "Petya Ransomware Master File Table Encryption". threatpost.com. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
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  34. ^Lemos, Robert (13 June 2008). "Ransomware resisting crypto cracking efforts". SecurityFocus. Retrieved 18 April 2009.
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  47. ^"New ransomware employs Tor to stay hidden from security". The Guardian. Retrieved 31 May 2016.
  48. ^ ab"The current state of ransomware: CTB-Locker". Sophos Blog. Sophos. 31 December 2015. Retrieved 31 May 2016.
  49. ^Brook, Chris (4 June 2015). "Author Behind Ransomware Tox Calls it Quits, Sells Platform". Retrieved 6 August 2015.
  50. ^Dela Paz, Roland (29 July 2015). "Encryptor RaaS: Yet another new Ransomware-as-a-Service on the Block". Archived from the original on 2 August 2015. Retrieved 6 August 2015.
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  54. ^"Criminals push ransomware hosted on GitHub and SourceForge pages by spamming 'fake nude pics' of celebrities". TheNextWeb. 7 February 2013. Retrieved 17 July 2013.
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  57. ^Young, A. (2003). Non-Zero Sum Games and Survivable Malware. IEEE Systems, Man and Cybernetics Society Information Assurance Workshop. pp. 24–29.
  58. ^A. Young, M. Yung (2004). Malicious Cryptography: Exposing Cryptovirology. Wiley. ISBN .
  59. ^Arntz, Pieter (10 July 2020). "Threat spotlight: WastedLocker, customized ransomware". Malwarebytes Labs. Retrieved 27 July 2020.
  60. ^Ricker, Thomas (27 July 2020). "Garmin confirms cyber attack as fitness tracking systems come back online". The Verge. Retrieved 27 July 2020.
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  62. ^ ab"Your Android phone viewed illegal porn. To unlock it, pay a $300 fine". Ars Technica. 6 May 2014. Retrieved 9 April 2017.
  63. ^"New Android ransomware uses clickjacking to gain admin privileges". PC World. 27 January 2016. Retrieved 9 April 2017.
  64. ^"Here's How to Overcome Newly Discovered iPhone Ransomware". Fortune. Retrieved 9 April 2017.
  65. ^"Ransomware scammers exploited Safari bug to extort porn-viewing iOS users". Ars Technica. 28 March 2017. Retrieved 9 April 2017.
  66. ^Al-Hawawreh, Muna; den Hartog, Frank; Sitnikova, Elena (2019). "Targeted Ransomware: A New Cyber Threat to Edge System of Brownfield Industrial Internet of Things". IEEE Internet of Things Journal. 6 (4): 7137–7151. doi:10.1109/JIOT.2019.2914390. S2CID 155469264.
  67. ^Palmer, Danny. "This is how ransomware could infect your digital camera". ZDNet. Retrieved 13 August 2019.
  68. ^"Gardaí warn of 'Police Trojan' computer locking virus". TheJournal.ie. Retrieved 31 May 2016.
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  71. ^ ab"Reveton Malware Freezes PCs, Demands Payment". InformationWeek. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
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  75. ^"'Reveton' ransomware upgraded with powerful password stealer". PC World. 19 August 2014. Retrieved 18 October 2014.
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Источник: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ransomware
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NameSpecification
CategoryMobile Phone Tools
Downloads1,849
User Rating4.5/5
DeveloperCoolmuster Studio: https://www.coolmuster.com/
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OsWindows XP/Vista/7/8/10
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Ransomware

Malicious software used in ransom demands

Ransomware is a type of malware from cryptovirology that threatens to publish the victim's personal data or perpetually block access to it unless a ransom is paid. While some simple ransomware may lock the system so that it is not difficult for a knowledgeable person to reverse, more advanced malware uses a technique called cryptoviral extortion. It encrypts the victim's files, making them inaccessible, and demands a ransom payment to decrypt them.[1][2][3][4] In a properly implemented cryptoviral extortion attack, recovering the files without the decryption key is an intractable problem – and difficult to trace digital currencies such as paysafecard or Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies that are used for the ransoms, making tracing and prosecuting the perpetrators difficult.

Ransomware attacks are typically carried out using a Trojan disguised as a legitimate file that the user is tricked into downloading or opening when it arrives as an email attachment. However, one high-profile example, the WannaCry worm, traveled automatically between computers without user interaction.[5]

Starting as early as 1989 with the first documented ransomware known as the AIDS trojan, the use of ransomware scams has grown internationally.[6][7][8] There were 181.5 million ransomware attacks in the first six months of 2018. This record marks a 229% increase over this same time frame in 2017.[9] In June 2014, vendor McAfee released data showing that it had collected more than double the number of ransomware samples that quarter than it had in the same quarter of the previous year.[10]CryptoLocker was particularly successful, procuring an estimated US$3 million before it was taken down by authorities,[11] and CryptoWall was estimated by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to have accrued over US$18 million by June 2015.[12] In 2020, the IC3 received 2,474 complaints identified as ransomware with adjusted losses of over $29.1 million. The losses could be more than that according to FBI.[13]

Operation[edit]

The concept of file-encrypting ransomware was invented and implemented by Young and Yung at Columbia University and was presented at the 1996 IEEE Security & Privacy conference. It is called cryptoviral extortion and it was inspired by the fictional facehugger in the movie Alien.[14] Cryptoviral extortion is the following three-round protocol carried out between the attacker and the victim.[1]

  1. [attackervictim] The attacker generates a key pair and places the corresponding public key in the malware. The malware is released.
  2. [victimattacker] To carry out the cryptoviral extortion attack, the malware generates a random symmetric key and encrypts the victim's data with it. It uses the public key in the malware to encrypt the symmetric key. This is known as hybrid encryption and it results in a small asymmetric ciphertext as well as the symmetric ciphertext of the victim's data. It zeroizes the symmetric key and the original plaintext data to prevent recovery. It puts up a message to the user that includes the asymmetric ciphertext and how to pay the ransom. The victim sends the asymmetric ciphertext and e-money to the attacker.
  3. [attackervictim] The attacker receives the payment, deciphers the asymmetric ciphertext with the attacker's private key, and sends the symmetric key to the victim. The victim deciphers the encrypted data with the needed symmetric key thereby completing the cryptovirology attack.

The symmetric key is randomly generated and will not assist other victims. At no point is the attacker's private key exposed to victims and the victim need only send a very small ciphertext (the encrypted symmetric-cipher key) to the attacker.

Ransomware attacks are typically carried out using a Trojan, entering a system through, for example, a malicious attachment, embedded link in a Phishing email, or a vulnerability in a network service. The program then runs a payload, which locks the system in some fashion, or claims to lock the system but does not (e.g., a scareware program). Payloads may display a fake warning purportedly by an entity such as a law enforcement agency, falsely claiming that the system has been used for illegal activities, contains content such as pornography and "pirated" media.[15][16][17]

Some payloads consist simply of an application designed to lock or restrict the system until payment is made, typically by setting the Windows Shell to itself,[18] or even modifying the master boot record and/or partition table to prevent the operating system from booting until it is repaired.[19] The most sophisticated payloads encrypt files, with many using strong encryption to encrypt the victim's files in such a way that only the malware author has the needed decryption key.[1][20][21]

Payment is virtually always the goal, and the victim is coerced into paying for the ransomware to be removed either by supplying a program that can decrypt the files, or by sending an unlock code that undoes the payload's changes. While the attacker may simply take the money without returning the victim's files, it is in the attacker's best interest to perform the decryption as agreed, since victims will stop sending payments if it becomes known that they serve no purpose. A key element in making ransomware work for the attacker is a convenient payment system that is hard to trace. A range of such payment methods have been used, including wire transfers, premium-rate text messages,[22] pre-paid voucher services such as paysafecard,[6][23][24] and the Bitcoincryptocurrency.[25][26][27]

In May 2020, vendor Sophos reported that the global average cost to remediate a ransomware attack (considering downtime, people time, device cost, network cost, lost opportunity and ransom paid) was $761,106. Ninety-five percent of organizations that paid the ransom had their data restored.[28]

History[edit]

See also: History of computer viruses and History of malware

Encrypting ransomware[edit]

The first known malware extortion attack, the "AIDS Trojan" written by Joseph Popp in 1989, had a design failure so severe it was not necessary to pay the extortionist at all. Its payload hid the files on the hard drive and encrypted only their names, and displayed a message claiming that the user's license to use a certain piece of software had expired. The user was asked to pay US$189 to "PC Cyborg Corporation" in order to obtain a repair tool even though the decryption key could be extracted from the code of the Trojan. The Trojan was also known as "PC Cyborg". Popp was declared mentally unfit to stand trial for his actions, but he promised to donate the profits from the malware to fund AIDS research.[29]

The idea of abusing anonymous cash systems to safely collect ransom from human kidnapping was introduced in 1992 by Sebastiaan von Solms and David Naccache.[30] This electronic money collection method was also proposed for cryptoviral extortion attacks.[1] In the von Solms-Naccache scenario a newspaper publication was used (since bitcoin ledgers did not exist at the time the paper was written).

The notion of using public key cryptography for data kidnapping attacks was introduced in 1996 by Adam L. Young and Moti Yung. Young and Yung critiqued the failed AIDS Information Trojan that relied on symmetric cryptography alone, the fatal flaw being that the decryption key could be extracted from the Trojan, and implemented an experimental proof-of-concept cryptovirus on a Macintosh SE/30 that used RSA and the Tiny Encryption Algorithm (TEA) to hybrid encrypt the victim's data. Since public key cryptography is used, the virus only contains the encryption key. The attacker keeps the corresponding private decryption key private. Young and Yung's original experimental cryptovirus had the victim send the asymmetric ciphertext to the attacker who deciphers it and returns the symmetric decryption key it contains to the victim for a fee. Long before electronic money existed Young and Yung proposed that electronic money could be extorted through encryption as well, stating that "the virus writer can effectively hold all of the money ransom until half of it is given to him. Even if the e-money was previously encrypted by the user, it is of no use to the user if it gets encrypted by a cryptovirus".[1] They referred to these attacks as being "cryptoviral extortion", an overt attack that is part of a larger class of attacks in a field called cryptovirology, which encompasses both overt and covert attacks.[1] The cryptoviral extortion protocol was inspired by the parasitic relationship between H. R. Giger's facehugger and its host in the movie Alien.[1][14]

Examples of extortionate ransomware became prominent in May 2005.[31] By mid-2006, Trojans such as Gpcode, TROJ.RANSOM.A, Archiveus, Krotten, Cryzip, and MayArchive began utilizing more sophisticated RSA encryption schemes, with ever-increasing key-sizes. Gpcode.AG, which was detected in June 2006, was encrypted with a 660-bit RSA public key.[32] In June 2008, a variant known as Gpcode.AK was detected. Using a 1024-bit RSA key, it was believed large enough to be computationally infeasible to break without a concerted distributed effort.[33][34][35][36]

Encrypting ransomware returned to prominence in late 2013 with the propagation of CryptoLocker—using the Bitcoindigital currency platform to collect ransom money. In December 2013, ZDNet estimated based on Bitcoin transaction information that between 15 October and 18 December, the operators of CryptoLocker had procured about US$27 million from infected users.[37] The CryptoLocker technique was widely copied in the months following, including CryptoLocker 2.0 (thought not to be related to CryptoLocker), CryptoDefense (which initially contained a major design flaw that stored the private key on the infected system in a user-retrievable location, due to its use of Windows' built-in encryption APIs),[26][38][39][40] and the August 2014 discovery of a Trojan specifically targeting network-attached storage devices produced by Synology.[41] In January 2015, it was reported that ransomware-styled attacks have occurred against individual websites via hacking, and through ransomware designed to target Linux-based web servers.[42][43][44]

In some infections, there is a two-stage payload, common in many malware systems. The user is tricked into running a script, which downloads the main virus and executes it. In early versions of the dual-payload system, the script was contained in a Microsoft Office document with an attached VBScript macro, or in a windows scripting facility (WSF) file. As detection systems started blocking these first stage payloads, the Microsoft Malware Protection Center identified a trend away toward LNK files with self-contained Microsoft Windows PowerShell scripts.[45] In 2016, PowerShell was found to be involved in nearly 40% of endpoint security incidents,[46]

Some ransomware strains have used proxies tied to Torhidden services to connect to their command and control servers, increasing the difficulty of tracing the exact location of the criminals.[47][48] Furthermore, dark web vendors have increasingly started to offer the technology as a service, wherein ransomware is sold, ready for deployment on victims' machines, on a subscription basis, similarly to Adobe Creative Cloud or Office 365.[48][49][50]

Symantec has classified ransomware to be the most dangerous cyber threat.[51]

On 28 September 2020, the computer systems at US’ biggest healthcare provider the Universal Health Services, was hit by a ransomware attack. The UHS chain from different locations reported noticing problems, with some locations reporting locked computers and phone systems from early Sunday (27 September).[52][51]

Non-encrypting ransomware[edit]

In August 2010, Russian authorities arrested nine individuals connected to a ransomware Trojan known as WinLock. Unlike the previous Gpcode Trojan, WinLock did not use encryption. Instead, WinLock trivially restricted access to the system by displaying pornographic images and asked users to send a premium-rate SMS (costing around US$10) to receive a code that could be used to unlock their machines. The scam hit numerous users across Russia and neighbouring countries—reportedly earning the group over US$16 million.[17][53]

In 2011, a ransomware Trojan surfaced that imitated the Windows Product Activation notice, and informed users that a system's Windows installation had to be re-activated due to "[being a] victim of fraud". An online activation option was offered (like the actual Windows activation process), but was unavailable, requiring the user to call one of six international numbers to input a 6-digit code. While the malware claimed that this call would be free, it was routed through a rogue operator in a country with high international phone rates, who placed the call on hold, causing the user to incur large international long distance charges.[15]

In February 2013, a ransomware Trojan based on the Stamp.EK exploit kit surfaced; the malware was distributed via sites hosted on the project hosting services SourceForge and GitHub that claimed to offer "fake nude pics" of celebrities.[54] In July 2013, an OS X-specific ransomware Trojan surfaced, which displays a web page that accuses the user of downloading pornography. Unlike its Windows-based counterparts, it does not block the entire computer, but simply exploits the behaviour of the web browser itself to frustrate attempts to close the page through normal means.[55]

In July 2013, a 21-year-old man from Virginia, whose computer coincidentally did contain pornographic photographs of underage girls with whom he had conducted sexualized communications, turned himself in to police after receiving and being deceived by FBI MoneyPak Ransomware accusing him of possessing child pornography. An investigation discovered the incriminating files, and the man was charged with child sexual abuse and possession of child pornography.[56]

Exfiltration (Leakware / Doxware)[edit]

The converse of ransomware is a cryptovirology attack invented by Adam L. Young that threatens to publish stolen information from the victim's computer system rather than deny the victim access to it.[57] In a leakware attack, malware exfiltrates sensitive host data either to the attacker or alternatively, to remote instances of the malware, and the attacker threatens to publish the victim's data unless a ransom is paid. The attack was presented at West Point in 2003 and was summarized in the book Malicious Cryptography as follows, "The attack differs from the extortion attack in the following way. In the extortion attack, the victim is denied access to its own valuable information and has to pay to get it back, where in the attack that is presented here the victim retains access to the information but its disclosure is at the discretion of the computer virus".[58] The attack is rooted in game theory and was originally dubbed "non-zero sum games and survivable malware". The attack can yield monetary gain in cases where the malware acquires access to information that may damage the victim user or organization, e.g., the reputational damage that could result from publishing proof that the attack itself was a success.

Common targets for exfiltration include:

  • third party information stored by the primary victim (such as customer account information or health records);
  • information proprietary to the victim (such as trade secrets and product information)
  • embarrassing information (such as the victim's health information or information about the victim's personal past)

Exfiltration attacks are usually targeted, with a curated victim list, and often preliminary surveillance of the victim's systems to find potential data targets and weaknesses.[59][60]

Mobile ransomware[edit]

With the increased popularity of ransomware on PC platforms, ransomware targeting mobile operating systems has also proliferated. Typically, mobile ransomware payloads are blockers, as there is little incentive to encrypt data since it can be easily restored via online synchronization.[61] Mobile ransomware typically targets the Android platform, as it allows applications to be installed from third-party sources.[61][62] The payload is typically distributed as an APK file installed by an unsuspecting user; it may attempt to display a blocking message over top of all other applications,[62] while another used a form of clickjacking to cause the user to give it "device administrator" privileges to achieve deeper access to the system.[63]

Different tactics have been used on iOS devices, such as exploiting iCloud accounts and using the Find My iPhone system to lock access to the device.[64] On iOS 10.3, Apple patched a bug in the handling of JavaScript pop-up windows in Safari that had been exploited by ransomware websites.[65] It recently[when?] has been shown that ransomware may also target ARM architectures like those that can be found in various Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, such as Industrial IoT edge devices.[66]

In August 2019 researchers demonstrated it's possible to infect DSLR cameras with ransomware.[67] Digital cameras often use Picture Transfer Protocol (PTP - standard protocol used to transfer files.) Researchers found that it was possible to exploit vulnerabilities in the protocol to infect target camera(s) with ransomware (or execute any arbitrary code). This attack was presented at the Defcon security conference in Las Vegas as a proof of concept attack (not as actual armed malware).

Notable attack targets[edit]

Further information: List of cyberattacks § Ransomware attacks

Notable software packages[edit]

Reveton[edit]

In 2012, a major ransomware Trojan known as Reveton began to spread. Based on the Citadel Trojan (which itself, is based on the Zeus Trojan), its payload displays a warning purportedly from a law enforcement agency claiming that the computer has been used for illegal activities, such as downloading unlicensed software or child pornography. Due to this behaviour, it is commonly referred to as the "Police Trojan".[68][69][70] The warning informs the user that to unlock their system, they would have to pay a fine using a voucher from an anonymous prepaid cash service such as Ukash or paysafecard. To increase the illusion that the computer is being tracked by law enforcement, the screen also displays the computer's IP address, while some versions display footage from a victim's webcam to give the illusion that the user is being recorded.[6][71]

Reveton initially began spreading in various European countries in early 2012.[6] Variants were localized with templates branded with the logos of different law enforcement organizations based on the user's country; for example, variants used in the United Kingdom contained the branding of organizations such as the Metropolitan Police Service and the Police National E-Crime Unit. Another version contained the logo of the royalty collection societyPRS for Music, which specifically accused the user of illegally downloading music.[72] In a statement warning the public about the malware, the Metropolitan Police clarified that they would never lock a computer in such a way as part of an investigation.[6][16]

In May 2012, Trend Micro threat researchers discovered templates for variations for the United States and Canada, suggesting that its authors may have been planning to target users in North America.[73] By August 2012, a new variant of Reveton began to spread in the United States, claiming to require the payment of a $200 fine to the FBI using a MoneyPak card.[7][8][71] In February 2013, a Russian citizen was arrested in Dubai by Spanish authorities for his connection to a crime ring that had been using Reveton; ten other individuals were arrested on money laundering charges.[74] In August 2014, Avast Software reported that it had found new variants of Reveton that also distribute password-stealing malware as part of its payload.[75]

CryptoLocker[edit]

Main article: CryptoLocker

Encrypting ransomware reappeared in September 2013 with a Trojan known as CryptoLocker, which generated a 2048-bit RSA key pair and uploaded in turn to a command-and-control server, and used to encrypt files using a whitelist of specific file extensions. The malware threatened to delete the private key if a payment of Bitcoin or a pre-paid cash voucher was not made within 3 days of the infection. Due to the extremely large key size it uses, analysts and those affected by the Trojan considered CryptoLocker extremely difficult to repair.[25][76][77][78] Even after the deadline passed, the private key could still be obtained using an online tool, but the price would increase to 10 BTC—which cost approximately US$2300 as of November 2013.[79][80]

CryptoLocker was isolated by the seizure of the Gameover ZeuSbotnet as part of Operation Tovar, as officially announced by the U.S. Department of Justice on 2 June 2014. The Department of Justice also publicly issued an indictment against the Russian hacker Evgeniy Bogachev for his alleged involvement in the botnet.[81][82] It was estimated that at least US$3 million was extorted with the malware before the shutdown.[11]

CryptoLocker.F and TorrentLocker[edit]

In September 2014, a wave of ransomware Trojans surfaced that first targeted users in Australia, under the names CryptoWall and CryptoLocker (which is, as with CryptoLocker 2.0, unrelated to the original CryptoLocker). The Trojans spread via fraudulent e-mails claiming to be failed parcel delivery notices from Australia Post; to evade detection by automatic e-mail scanners that follow all links on a page to scan for malware, this variant was designed to require users to visit a web page and enter a code before the payload is actually downloaded, preventing such automated processes from being able to scan the payload. Symantec determined that these new variants, which it identified as CryptoLocker.F, were again, unrelated to the original CryptoLocker due to differences in their operation.[83][84] A notable victim of the Trojans was the Australian Broadcasting Corporation; live programming on its television news channelABC News 24 was disrupted for half an hour and shifted to Melbourne studios due to a CryptoWall infection on computers at its Sydney studio.[85][86][87]

Another Trojan in this wave, TorrentLocker, initially contained a design flaw comparable to CryptoDefense; it used the same keystream for every infected computer, making the encryption trivial to overcome. However, this flaw was later fixed.[38] By late-November 2014, it was estimated that over 9,000 users had been infected by TorrentLocker in Australia alone, trailing only Turkey with 11,700 infections.[88]

CryptoWall[edit]

Another major ransomware Trojan targeting Windows, CryptoWall, first appeared in 2014. One strain of CryptoWall was distributed as part of a malvertising campaign on the Zedo ad network in late-September 2014 that targeted several major websites; the ads redirected to rogue websites that used browser plugin exploits to download the payload. A Barracuda Networks researcher also noted that the payload was signed with a digital signature in an effort to appear trustworthy to security software.[89] CryptoWall 3.0 used a payload written in JavaScript as part of an email attachment, which downloads executables disguised as JPG images. To further evade detection, the malware creates new instances of explorer.exe and svchost.exe to communicate with its servers. When encrypting files, the malware also deletes volume shadow copies and installs spyware that steals passwords and Bitcoin wallets.[90]

The FBI reported in June 2015 that nearly 1,000 victims had contacted the bureau's Internet Crime Complaint Center to report CryptoWall infections, and estimated losses of at least $18 million.[12]

The most recent version, CryptoWall 4.0, enhanced its code to avoid antivirus detection, and encrypts not only the data in files but also the file names.[91]

Fusob[edit]

Fusob is one of the major mobile ransomware families. Between April 2015 and March 2016, about 56 percent of accounted mobile ransomware was Fusob.[92]

Like a typical mobile ransomware, it employs scare tactics to extort people to pay a ransom.[93] The program pretends to be an accusatory authority, demanding the victim to pay a fine from $100 to $200 USD or otherwise face a fictitious charge. Rather surprisingly, Fusob suggests using iTunes gift cards for payment. Also, a timer clicking down on the screen adds to the users’ anxiety as well.

In order to infect devices, Fusob masquerades as a pornographic video player. Thus, victims, thinking it is harmless, unwittingly download Fusob.[94]

When Fusob is installed, it first checks the language used in the device. If it uses Russian or certain Eastern European languages, Fusob does nothing. Otherwise, it proceeds on to lock the device and demand ransom. Among victims, about 40% of them are in Germany with the United Kingdom and the United States following with 14.5% and 11.4% respectively.

Fusob has lots in common with Small, which is another major family of mobile ransomware. They represented over 93% of mobile ransomware between 2015 and 2016.

WannaCry[edit]

Main article: WannaCry ransomware attack

In May 2017, the WannaCry ransomware attack spread through the Internet, using an exploit vector named EternalBlue, which was allegedly leaked from the U.S. National Security Agency. The ransomware attack, unprecedented in scale,[95] infected more than 230,000 computers in over 150 countries,[96] using 20 different languages to demand money from users using Bitcoin cryptocurrency. WannaCry demanded US$300 per computer.[97] The attack affected Telefónica and several other large companies in Spain, as well as parts of the British National Health Service (NHS), where at least 16 hospitals had to turn away patients or cancel scheduled operations,[98]FedEx, Deutsche Bahn, Honda,[99]Renault, as well as the Russian Interior Ministry and Russian telecom MegaFon.[100] The attackers gave their victims a 7-day deadline from the day their computers got infected, after which the encrypted files would be deleted.[101]

Petya[edit]

Main article: Petya (malware)

See also: 2017 cyberattacks on Ukraine

Petya was first discovered in March 2016; unlike other forms of encrypting ransomware, the malware aimed to infect the master boot record, installing a payload which encrypts the file tables of the NTFS file system the next time that the infected system boots, blocking the system from booting into Windows at all until the ransom is paid. Check Point reported that despite what it believed to be an innovative evolution in ransomware design, it had resulted in relatively-fewer infections than other ransomware active around the same time frame.[102]

On 27 June 2017, a heavily modified version of Petya was used for a global cyberattack primarily targeting Ukraine (but affecting many countries[103]). This version had been modified to propagate using the same EternalBlue exploit that was used by WannaCry. Due to another design change, it is also unable to actually unlock a system after the ransom is paid; this led to security analysts speculating that the attack was not meant to generate illicit profit, but to simply cause disruption.[104][105]

Bad Rabbit[edit]

On 24 October 2017, some users in Russia and Ukraine reported a new ransomware attack, named "Bad Rabbit", which follows a similar pattern to WannaCry and Petya by encrypting the user's file tables and then demands a Bitcoin payment to decrypt them. ESET believed the ransomware to have been distributed by a bogus update to Adobe Flash software.[106] Among agencies that were affected by the ransomware were: Interfax, Odesa International Airport, Kyiv Metro, and the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine.[107] As it used corporate network structures to spread, the ransomware was also discovered in other countries, including Turkey, Germany, Poland, Japan, South Korea, and the United States.[108] Experts believed the ransomware attack was tied to the Petya attack in Ukraine (especially because Bad Rabbit's code has many overlapping and analogical elements to the code of Petya/NotPetya,[109] appending to CrowdStrike Bad Rabbit and NotPetya's DLL (dynamic link library) share 67 percent of the same code[110]) though the only identity to the culprits are the names of characters from the Game of Thrones series embedded within the code.[108]

Security experts found that the ransomware did not use the EternalBlue exploit to spread, and a simple method to inoculate an unaffected machine running older Windows versions was found by 24 October 2017.[111][112] Further, the sites that had been used to spread the bogus Flash updating have gone offline or removed the problematic files within a few days of its discovery, effectively killing off the spread of Bad Rabbit.[108]

SamSam[edit]

In 2016, a new strain of ransomware emerged that was targeting JBoss servers.[113] This strain, named "SamSam", was found to bypass the process of phishing or illicit downloads in favor of exploiting vulnerabilities on weak servers.[114] The malware uses a Remote Desktop Protocolbrute-force attack to guess weak passwords until one is broken. The virus has been behind attacks on government and healthcare targets, with notable hacks occurring against the town of Farmington, New Mexico, the Colorado Department of Transportation, Davidson County, North Carolina, and most recently, a major breach of security on the infrastructure of Atlanta.[114]

Mohammad Mehdi Shah Mansouri (born in Qom, Iran in 1991) and Faramarz Shahi Savandi (born in Shiraz, Iran, in 1984) are wanted by the FBI for allegedly launching SamSam ransomware.[115] The two have allegedly made $6 million from extortion and caused over $30 million in damages using the malware.[116]

[edit]

On May 7, 2021 a cyberattack was executed on the US Colonial Pipeline. The Federal Bureau of Investigation identified DarkSide as the perpetrator of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack, perpetrated by malicious code, that led to a voluntary shutdown of the main pipeline supplying 45% of fuel to the East Coast of the United States. The attack was described as the worst cyberattack to date on U.S. critical infrastructure. DarkSide successfully extorted about 75 Bitcoin (almost US$5 million) from Colonial Pipeline. U.S. officials are investigating whether the attack was purely criminal or took place with the involvement of the Russian government or another state sponsor. Following the attack, DarkSide posted a statement claiming that "We are apolitical, we do not participate in geopolitics...Our goal is to make money and not creating problems for society."

On May 10, SentinelOne published an analysis of the DarkSide Ransomware attack.

In May 2021, the FBI and Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency issued a joint alert urging the owners and operators of critical infrastructure to take certain steps to reduce their vulnerability to DarkSide ransomware and ransomware in general.

Syskey[edit]

Syskey is a utility that was included with Windows NT-based operating systems to encrypt the user account database, optionally with a password. The tool has sometimes been effectively used as ransomware during technical support scams—where a caller with remote access to the computer may use the tool to lock the user out of their computer with a password known only to them.[117] Syskey was removed from later versions of Windows 10 and Windows Server in 2017, due to being obsolete and "known to be used by hackers as part of ransomware scams".[118][119]

Ransomware-as-a-service[edit]

Ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) became a notable method after the Russia-based[120] or Russian-speaking[121] group REvil staged operations against several targets, including the Brazil-based JBS S.A. in May 2021, and the US-based Kaseya Limited in July 2021.[122] After a July 9, 2021 phone call between United States president Joe Biden and Russian president Vladimir Putin, Biden told the press, "I made it very clear to him that the United States expects when a ransomware operation is coming from his soil even though it’s not sponsored by the state, we expect them to act if we give them enough information to act on who that is." Biden later added that the United States would take the group's servers down if Putin did not.[123][124] Four days later, REvil websites and other infrastructure vanished from the internet.[125]

Mitigation[edit]

If an attack is suspected or detected in its early stages, it takes some time for encryption to take place; immediate removal of the malware (a relatively simple process) before it has completed would stop further damage to data, without salvaging any already lost.[126][127]

Security experts have suggested precautionary measures for dealing with ransomware. Using software or other security policies to block known payloads from launching will help to prevent infection, but will not protect against all attacks[25][128] As such, having a proper backup solution is a critical component to defending against ransomware. Note that, because many ransomware attackers will not only encrypt the victim's live machine but it will also attempt to delete any hot backups stored locally or on accessible over the network on a NAS, it's also critical to maintain "offline" backups of data stored in locations inaccessible from any potentially infected computer, such as external storage drives or devices that do not have any access to any network (including the Internet), prevents them from being accessed by the ransomware. Moreover, if using a NAS or Cloud storage, then the computer should have append-only permission to the destination storage, such that it cannot delete or overwrite previous backups. According to comodo, applying two Attack Surface Reduction on OS/Kernal provides materially reduced attack surface which results in heightened security posture.[129][130][131]

Installing security updates issued by software vendors can mitigate the vulnerabilities leveraged by certain strains to propagate.[132][133][134][135][136] Other measures include cyber hygiene − exercising caution when opening e-mail attachments and links, network segmentation, and keeping critical computers isolated from networks.[137][138] Furthermore, to mitigate the spread of ransomware measures of infection control can be applied.[139] Such may include disconnecting infected machines from all networks, educational programs,[140] effective communication channels, malware surveillance[original research?] and ways of collective participation[139]

File system defenses against ransomware[edit]

A number of file systems keep snapshots of the data they hold, which can be used to recover the contents of files from a time prior to the ransomware attack in the event the ransomware does not disable it.

  • On Windows, the Volume shadow copy (VSS) is often used to store backups of data; ransomware often targets these snapshots to prevent recovery and therefore it is often advisable to disable user access to the user tool VSSadmin.exe to reduce the risk that ransomware can disable or delete past copies.
  • On Windows 10, users can add specific directories or files to Controlled Folder Access in Windows Defender to protect them from ransomware.[141] It is advised to add backup and other important directories to Controlled Folder Access.
  • Unless malware gains root on the ZFS host system in deploying an attack coded to issue ZFS administrative commands, file servers running ZFS are broadly immune to ransomware, because ZFS is capable of snapshotting even a large file system many times an hour, and these snapshots are immutable (read only) and easily rolled back or files recovered in the event of data corruption.[142] In general, only an administrator can delete (but cannot modify) snapshots.

File decryption and recovery[edit]

There are a number of tools intended specifically to decrypt files locked by ransomware, although successful recovery may not be possible.[2][143] If the same encryption key is used for all files, decryption tools use files for which there are both uncorrupted backups and encrypted copies (a known-plaintext attack in the jargon of cryptanalysis. But, it only works when the cipher the attacker used was weak to begin with, being vulnerable to known-plaintext attack); recovery of the key, if it is possible, may take several days.[144] Free ransomware decryption tools can help decrypt files encrypted by the following forms of ransomware: AES_NI, Alcatraz Locker, Apocalypse, BadBlock, Bart, BTCWare, Crypt888, CryptoMix, CrySiS, EncrypTile, FindZip, Globe, Hidden Tear, Jigsaw, LambdaLocker, Legion, NoobCrypt, Stampado, SZFLocker, TeslaCrypt, XData.[145]

In addition, old copies of files may exist on the disk, which has been previously deleted. In some cases, these deleted versions may still be recoverable using software designed for that purpose.

Growth[edit]

Ransomware malicious software was first confined to one or two countries in Eastern Europe and subsequently spread across the Atlantic to the United States and Canada.[146] The number of cyberattacks during 2020 was double that of 2019.[147] The first versions of this type of malware used various techniques to disable the computers[146] by locking the victims system machine (Locker Ransomware) [133]. Ransomware uses different tactics to extort victims. One of the most common methods is locking the device's screen by displaying a message from a branch of local law enforcement alleging that the victim must pay a fine for illegal activity. The ransomware may request a payment by sending an SMS message to a premium rate number. Some similar variants of the malware display pornographic image content and demanded payment for the removal of it.[146]

By 2011 ransomware tactics had evolved. Attackers began using electronic payment methods as well as language localization to the affected device.

Corporations, private entities, governments, and hospitals can be affected by these malicious attacks. In 2016, a significant uptick in ransomware attacks on hospitals was noted. According to the 2017 Internet Security Threat Report from Symantec Corp, ransomware affected not only IT systems but also patient care, clinical operations, and billing. Online criminals may be motivated by the money available and sense of urgency within the healthcare system.[148]

Ransomware is growing rapidly across the internet users but also for the IoT environment[146] which creates a challenging problem to the INFOSEC while increasing the attack surface area. They are evolving into more sophisticated attacks and, they are becoming more resistant; at the same time, they are also more accessible than ever. Today, for a cheap price, the attackers have access to ransomware as a service. The big problem is that millions of dollars are lost by some organizations and industries that have decided to pay, such as the Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center and the MedStar Health.[149] At the end, the pressure to offer services to the patients and keep their lives is so critical that they are forced to pay, and the attacker knows that. The problem here is that by paying the ransom, they are funding the cybercrime.

According to Symantec 2019 ISTR report, for the first time since 2013, in 2018 there was an observed decrease in ransomware activity with a drop of 20 percent. Before 2017, consumers were the preferred victims, but in 2017 this changed dramatically, it moved to the enterprises. In 2018 this path accelerated with 81 percent infections which represented a 12 percent increase.[150] The common distribution method today is based on email campaigns.

The first reported death following a ransomware attack was at a German hospital in October 2020.[151]

An effective and successful cyber awareness training program must be sponsored from the top of the organization with supporting policies and procedures which effectively outline ramifications of non-compliance, frequency of training and a process for acknowledgement of training. Without sponsorship from the “C-level” executives the training cannot be ignored.  Other factors that are key to a successful Cyber Awareness Training program is to establish a baseline identifying the level of knowledge of the organization to establish where the users are in their knowledge prior to training and after. Whichever approach an organization decides to implement, it is important that the organization has policies and procedures in place that provide training that is up to date, performed frequently and has the backing of the entire organization from the top down.

Investment in technology to detect and stop these threats must be maintained, but along with that we need to remember and focus on our weakest link, which is the user.

Criminal arrests and convictions[edit]

Zain Qaiser[edit]

A British student, Zain Qaiser, from Barking, London was jailed for more than six years at Kingston Crown Court for his ransomware attacks in 2019.[152] He is said to have been "the most prolific cyber criminal to be sentenced in the UK". He became active when he was only 17. He contacted the Russian controller of one of the most powerful attacks, believed to be the Lurk malware gang, and arranged for a split of his profits. He also contacted online criminals from China and the US to move the money. For about one and a half years, he posed as a legitimate supplier of online promotions of book advertising on some of the world's most visited legal pornography websites. Each of the adverts that was promoted on the websites contained the Reveton Ransomware strain of the malicious Angler Exploit Kit (AEK)[153] that seized control of the machine. Investigators discovered about £700,000 of earnings, although his network may have earned more than £4m. He may have hidden some money using cryptocurrencies. The ransomware would instruct victims to buy GreenDot MoneyPak vouchers, and enter the code in the Reveton panel displayed on the screen. This money entered a MoneyPak account managed by Qaiser, who would then deposit the voucher payments into an American co-conspirator's debit card—that of Raymond Odigie Uadiale, who was then a student at Florida International University during 2012 and 2013 and later worked for Microsoft. Uadiale would convert the money into Liberty Reserve digital currency and deposit it into Qaiser's Liberty Reserve account.[154]

A breakthrough in this case occurred in May 2013 when authorities from several countries seized the Liberty Reserve servers, obtaining access to all its transactions and account history. Qaiser was running encrypted virtual machines on his Macbook Pro with both Mac and Windows operating systems.[155] He could not be tried earlier because he was sectioned under the UK Mental Health Act at Goodmayes Hospital (where he was found to be using the hospital Wi-Fi to access his advertising sites.) His lawyer claimed that Qaiser had suffered from mental illness.[152] Russian police arrested 50 members of the Lurk malware gang in June 2016.[156] Uadiale, a naturalized US citizen of Nigerian descent, was jailed for 18 months.[157]

Freedom of speech challenges and criminal punishment[edit]

The publication of proof-of-concept attack code is common among academic researchers and vulnerability researchers. It teaches the nature of the threat, conveys the gravity of the issues, and enables countermeasures to be devised and put into place. However, lawmakers with the support of law-enforcement bodies are contemplating making the creation of ransomware illegal. In the state of Maryland, the original draft of HB 340 made it a felony to create ransomware, punishable by up to 10 years in prison.[158] However, this provision was removed from the final version of the bill.[159] A minor in Japan was arrested for creating and distributing ransomware code.[160] Young and Yung have had the ANSI C source code to a ransomware cryptotrojan on-line, at cryptovirology.com, since 2005 as part of a cryptovirology book being written. The source code to the cryptotrojan is still live on the Internet and is associated with a draft of Chapter 2.[161]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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Источник: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ransomware

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Droid Transfer 1.53 Crack Patch Free Download 2021

Droid Transfer Free Download allows you to transfer music, and the inventor claims that it can even transfer music directly from the iTunes library. However, as shown by the accessible menus, the application can transfer different data kinds, including but not limited to calendars, contacts, photographs, call logs, and contacts. It configures as long as your wireless network correctly and connects all devices to the same network. Thus, Droid Transfer Crack can simplify the process of transferring data from your smartphone to your PC.

Droid Transfer Full key enables users to transfer their Android phone’s SMS and MMS chats to a PC, along with any attachments like photos, videos, or emojis. You can save messages as PDF files, text files, HTML files, or printed directly from the app. Droid Transfer Crack prints all notices, including any photos, as well as the dates and times they were received, in case you need to utilize this material for reference or in a court case.

Droid Transfer License Key enables users to backup and export Android data to a computer. It also recovers data such as SMS MMS Messages, Contact, Calendar, Call history, and Bookmarks from a computer database to an Android device, whether a new Android or an older Android. That is why it simplifies migrating data from an older Android phone to a new Android phone for Android users. What if data transfer across Android devices is as possible? Simple enough, as well. After connecting two Android devices to the computer, you can transfer data between them using a simple interface. You can seamlessly access all of this info combined on your new Android phone. Additionally, Android phones with cracked screens are supported.

Droid Transfer 1.53 Crack & Key free 2021:

Droid Transfer Crack is a robust Windows application that lets you transfer SMS and MMS messages from your Android device to your computer. You can easily transfer data from Android to PC using a USB connection or a local wireless network. Additionally, you may share texts between Android devices. Additionally, the Droid Transfer Activation Code features an extremely user-friendly UI. As a result, it is simple to use. Further, you can restore all of your SMS messages to your system. As a result, you can restore deleted texts to the new Android device using the backup option.

Additionally, you can send messages in a variety of forms. Additionally, you can store your text messages in various formats, including PDF, HTML, and others.

Backuptrans, Android Data Transfer, allows you to backup and export Android data. It enables users to restore data such as SMS MMS Messages, Contacts, Calendar, Call history, and Bookmarks from an electronic database to an Android device, whether a replacement Android device or an older Android device. That is why it simplifies migrating data from an older Android phone to a replacement Android phone for Android users. What if data transfer across Android devices is as possible? Simple droid transfer activation key free - Crack Key For U, as well. After connecting two Android devices to the computer, you’ll transfer data between them using a simple interface. Additionally, Android phones with cracked screens are supported.

Key Features:

  • Droid Transfer Crack is an extremely powerful and efficient application.
  • It is capable of copying call records.
  • Additionally, users can copy contacts and calendars.
  • Additionally, you can send and receive SMS and MMS messages.
  • The user can see and copy images from their Android device to their PC.
  • Additionally, you can effortlessly and rapidly transfer songs and sync your iTunes collection.
  • Additionally, you can select and remove photographs via your PC.
  • It is capable of replicating call logs, contacts, and calendars.
  • SMS and MMS message transfer from Android to PC.
  • Additionally, the user can see and copy images from an Android device to a PC.
  • Additionally, sync your iTunes library and transfer music.
  • Using a personal computer, you can select and remove images.
  • Simple to set up and operate.
  • It updates automatically.

Droid Transfer 1.53 Crack

System Requirements:

  • Operating System: Windows 7/8/8.1/10.
  • RAM: 512 MB.
  • Hard Disk Space: 50 MB. required.
  • Processor: Intel Dual Core processor or later.

How To install?

  1. First, download the newest version.
  2. Uninstall the previous version.
  3. Note close up the Virus Guard.
  4. After downloading Unpack or extracting the RAR file and open setup.
  5. Install the setup after install closes it from everywhere.
  6. Now open the ‘Crack’ or ‘Patch’ folder, copy and replace the crack file into the installation folder.
  7. After all of those, enjoy the Droid Transfer Latest Version of 2021.

Summary

Reviewer

Sadia

Review Date

Reviewed Item

Droid Transfer 1.53 Crack

Author Rating

Software Name

Droid Transfer

Software Name

Win/Mac

Software Category

Mobile Tool

Posted in Mobile Tool By SadiaPosted on Tagged droid transfer, droid transfer activation code, droid transfer activation key free, droid transfer code, droid transfer crack, droid transfer download for pc, droid transfer free download

Источник: https://crackeygenpatch.com/droid-transfer-crack-code-2021/

BackupTrans 3.6.11.78 Crack can be an AIO data retrieval package for Android, IOS, MAC, and Windows backup tools. The problem with data, document sharing, and communication sparks, what exactly to understand the process of data protection, maintenance, and extraction without loss of permanent devices? You can retrieve messages, MMS, photo chats for apps, videos, pictures, text on some other i-phones, Android devices. Conversion is supported. It moves in front of the thickness of the computer. Let’s identify the missing data, and it became clear.

BackupTrans Crack is called a utility tool. Bee has a lot of valuable data that he understands and recognizes. As a copy of the information, both videos, Phone Contacts, Contacts, Viber, Kik, Audio, Video, Photos, Photos, SMS, etc. You can restore documents after partitioning. All files will probably be able to communicate soon.BackupTrans license key copy of the information on PC or even devices is updated daily. It comes with the operation to restore the computer program and power supply. There will be no direct rejection files for a safe recovery, recovery, coping, and recovery.

BackupTrans 3.6.11.78 Crack With License Key Free Download 2021

BackupTrans 3.6.11.78 Crack With Serial Key Free Download [Win/Mac]

The mentality of this program is that every Android device has a backup feature. This can really be a tool for scrolling through messages and MMS, SMS. The motto of this software is to ensure that information is recovered, lost, and maintained. All this is in the hands of Backuptrans. The process is important for terminating the installation package of all Android devices. This is not difficult to use and works in a square shape. With the Backuptrans registration key, you can make a backup and restore all your data with one click. It can also transfer all your data between the same devices as Android to Android. You can move and backup, including all contacts, videos, ringtones, default settings, and more. It is the best software, and you will always find it updated thanks to its automatic update system. If you have two Android and iOS-based devices or have an Android / iPhone, you should have a tool to help you manage data on the two most popular mobile systems and transfer data between Android and iPhone. Like AVS Video Editor from here. Using a secure connection, it is easy to connect without errors or damage. It accumulates any kind from both sides, like Android or Windows OS.

Backuptrans Activation Key To do this, you need an Internet connection, and then you can quickly transfer data from your mobile phone to the Windows operating system. You can instantly transfer all types of files, contacts, messages, and default settings. The Backuptrans Android data transfer application is more universal and more modern in its field. Hence he is much more professional and starts using this software. At the same time, all transferred data included all multimedia files or images. There is no possibility of error or loss when sending or receiving your data, which is the most famous and practically used application globally among all types of users. According to the authors, the Backuptrans Android iPhone Data Transfer program is the best data management tool for Android and iPhone phones. You get a simple and efficient solution for copying and replacing data directly on a computer without rooting/deleting mail.

BackupTrans 3.6.11.78 Crack With Serial Key Free Download [Win/Mac]:

BackupTrans 3.6.11.78 Crack With Serial Key Free Download [Win/Mac]

Main Features Of Backuptrans Crack:

  • Universal WhatsApp chat and copy app for Android and iPhone Does anyone have an Android and iPhone phone? How to manage WhatsApp chat recordings on Android, iPhone, and PC? More and more people nowadays own more than one mobile phone. If you are one of them and have an Android and iPhone phone or two Android / iPhone phones, the key to activate Backuptrans Android iPhone WhatsApp Transfer Plus should be the primary software for easy management of WhatsApp chat logs. On a laptop. It offers all the answers you want from Android WhatsApp to iPhone, iPhone WhatsApp to Android, Android / iPhone to WhatsApp to laptop, restore WhatsApp from PC to Android / iPhone, and extract attachments from WhatsApp messages to your computer.
  • Backup and restore WhatsApp Chat Recordings for Android / iPhone to PC – With Backuptrans Android iPhone WhatsApp Transfer Plus Keygen, you can back up and restore WhatsApp messages, including videos, photos, and other related documents, to your laptop. Do not worry about losing the facts.
  • Transfer WhatsApp Messages Between Android And iPhone Instantly – Backup Android iPhone WhatsApp Transfer Plus free download is designed to transfer WhatsApp messages between Android and iPhone to PC at the same time. Just connect your iPhone and Android smartphone to your laptop and press the transfer key; everything is done in seconds. All WhatsApp messages can be combined perfectly.

What’s more:

  • Copy WhatsApp messages on Android / iPhone from iTunes backup – Lost your iPhone and now want to transfer WhatsApp chat recordings to your old iPhone from a backup to a new iPhone or Android mobile phone? If you immediately sponsored your iPhone with iTunes on a laptop, Backuptrans Android iPhone WhatsApp Transfer Plus Patch will easily extract and copy WhatsApp messages from the iTunes backup to your Android / iPhone, even without your old iPhone.
  • Backuptrans Android iPhone WhatsApp Transfer Plus 3.6.11.78 Crack provides you with an unconventional way of viewing, exporting, or printing WhatsApp messages on your PC. Users can export and purchase WhatsApp messages as PC reports with just a few clicks. Report layout includes txt, CSV, sentence, HTML and pdf.
  • Meanwhile, Backuptrans Crack can also print WhatsApp messages from Android / iPhone in chat topics. If you need to export attachments to WhatsApp messages, honestly click the “Remove Attachment” button, and all pictures, movies, and audio attachments will be automatically extracted to your laptop.
  • Backup WhatsApp chat recordings from Android / iPhone to PC.
  • Return WhatsApp chat recordings from PC to Android / iPhone.
  • Swap WhatsApp messages between Android and iPhone.
  • Update WhatsApp messages from iTunes Backup on Android / iPhone.
  • Export WhatsApp messages for recording (txt, CSV, document, HTML, pdf)
  • Print WhatsApp messages in conversations on laptops.
  • WhatsApp, Movie Photos, Audio, etc. On a laptop. Extract.
  • Phonebooks for iPhone, Samsung, HTC, Motorola, Sony Ericsson, LG, Huawei, and more.

Key Features:

  • Usually, it immediately downloads all types of files from any Android device.
  • An ideal program for retrieving data from iOS devices
  • Make this UI work in an advanced environment.
  • Get your first cell phone as it is before losing this data.
  • No need to upgrade applications
  • It is easy to need a backup after setting up and scanning the data after trying out your own integrated heart song.
  • Move fast delivery of services between Android devices for the most important thing and access to routing.
  • Turn off and download the setup just like the whole i-phone backup; I set security to manipulate and restore
  • Eliminate the storage of disk components and tap
  • Download the full version, great for utilities
  • Works on recovering growing data and more
  • This makes it a smart approach to compiling large, small, and any file format.
  • It works to fix it, and it also supports a lot more because a copy of the messages also saves it all for starters.

What’s New In BackupTrans Crack?

  • Backup WhatsApp conversations from Android / iPhone to PC.
  • Fix WhatsApp chat files from PC to Android / iPhone.
  • Swap Whatsapp messages between Android and iPhone.
  • Get better WhatsApp messages from iTunes backup on Android / iPhone.
  • Export WhatsApp messages for storage (txt, CSV, document, HTML, pdf)
  • Print WhatsApp messages in laptop conversations.
  • WhatsApp can be used to store movies on laptops, audio, etc. Remove your attachments.
  • Operate iPhone, Samsung, HTC, Motorola, Sony Ericsson, LG, Huawei, and more.

System Requirements:

  • Microsoft Windows Windows 7 32/64-bit up to the latest version (for as long as Microsoft still supports the OS.)
  • Ram A minimum of 4 GB for 8 GB RAM to Operate.
  • Processor Intel Core i3-2100T @ 1.3GHz or AMD FX-4100 @2.5 GHz
  • iOS 10.12 (Sierra), 11.0 (Big Sur), and Later Version.
  • Linux Debian or RedHat-based distros – best effort
  • Size 4 MB

How to Download, Install, and Use?

  • The first thing is to download the BackupTrans Crack installation files in the given link below.
  • Extract the archive Crack installation file using WinRAR/WinZip.
  • Run the installation file “setup.exe” and keep clicking until it prompts you to select the installation folder.
  • Please indicate the location on the disc where you want to install the software during the installation process.
  • After the installation process complete, do not start the software immediately.
  • Open the Readme file; you should find it in the installation folder.
  • After selecting a folder, execute the Patch file, hit the next button/Copy the keygen file, and paste it.
  • The correction may take a few seconds, and it will be Cracked.
  • After finishing the process, a shortcut appears on the desktop.
  • Now restart your system.

Conclusion:

Backuptrans Crack is an Android and iPhone data transfer solution that lets you transfer files directly to your computer via Wi-Fi and USB connection. With one click, you can view your messages, contact number, conversations, call history, etc. You can move fast. It can quickly recover your data at the highest speed without any damage. This tool is suitable for both devices and can be the best assistant for you. If you have two iPhone / Android devices or iPhone and Android devices, it is always useful to find an application for iPhone / Android devices that will help you manage your WhatsApp chat history or transfer WhatsApp messages between iPhone and Android.

Are you looking for the best software to transfer your data to a new phone? It offers all the necessary features such as Android WhatsApp on iPhone transfer, Android / iPhone WhatsApp on computer transfer, Android WhatsApp command on iPhone, restore WhatsApp from PC to Android / Extract files attached to iPhone and WhatsApp messages on your computer.

Источник: https://crackkick.com/backuptrans-crack/

Free Download Droid Transfer full version standalone offline installer for Windows. It is a Windows application that works alongside a free Transfer Companion app for Android. It allows you to transfer SMS and MMS Messages from your Android Phone to your PC via a USB cable or over your local WiFi network.

You can also FREE download Anvsoft SynciOS Professional.

Overview of Droid Transfer Benefits

You can save your phone messages in various file formats, including PDF, HTML, or Text. It also saves any photos, emojis, and videos in your messages, as well as dates and times they were received.

Alternatively, Print your Android Phone Messages directly from Droid Transfer running on your PC.

Overview of Droid Transfer Features

  • Save Messages and More from Android to your computer.
  • Backup Android Messages to PC
  • Export Text Messages to PDF
  • Print SMS with Dates and Times
  • Backup Contacts and Calendars
  • Sync iTunes with Android
  • Works Without Root Access

Technical Details and System Requirements

  • Supported OS: Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 7
  • RAM (Memory): 2 GB RAM (4 GB recommended)
  • Free Hard Disk Space: 200 MB or more
Источник: https://filecr.com/windows/wide-angle-droid-transfer/

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Comprehensive Droid transfer activation key free - Crack Key For U Data services to propel your enterprise forward.

Источник: https://www.microfocus.com/en-us/home
Droid Transfer Crack Download

Droid Transfer Crack : is a simple application that works with the free Android transfer companion app, allowing you to transfer SMS and MMS messages from your Android phone to your PC via a USB cable or via a local WiFi network. You can also download IVT BlueSoleil with Crack.

With Droid Transfer Full Version, you can save phone messages in multiple file formats including PDF, HTML or text. Droid Transfer 2020 also saves all photos, emojis and videos in your messages, as well as the date and time they were received. Or, print your Android phone messages directly from Droid Transfer running on your PC. In addition to messages, you can also transfer music, and the developer claims that the tool can also transfer music directly from the iTunes library.

Droid Transfer Key Features:

  • It allows you to transfer SMS and MMS messages from your Android phone to your PC.
  • You can save Messages and More from Android to your computer.
  • You can backup Android Messages to PC
  • Export Text Messages to PDF
  • You can print SMS with Dates and Times
  • Backup Contacts and Calendars
  • You can sync iTunes with Android
  • Works without Root Access
  • And much more….       

System Requirements for Droid Transfer:

  • Supported Operating System: Windows 7/8/8.1/10
  • Memory (RAM) required: 512 MB of RAM required.
  • Hard Disk Space required: 50 MB of free hard disk space required.
  • Processor: Intel Dual Core processor or later.
  • Administrator rights
Droid Transfer License Key

How to Crack or Registered or Activate Droid Transfer with Crack?

  • First download the latest version.
  • Uninstall the previous version.
  • Note Turn off the Virus Guard.
  • After Download Unpack or extract the rar file and open setup.
  • Install the setup after install close it from everywhere.
  • Now open the ‘Crack’ or ‘Patch’ folder, copy and replace cracked file into installation folder.
  • After all of these enjoy the Droid Transfer Latest Version of 2020.

Please Share it. Sharing is Always Caring

Droid Transfer 1.45.0 with Crack / Mirror

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Источник: https://thepctribe.com/droid-transfer-1-45-with-crack-free-download/

MobiKin Transfer for Mobile 3.1.31 Crack + Key Full Review

MobiKin Transfer for Mobile Crack

If you plan to switch to a new phone, such as Samsung S9, iPhone X or other Android or iOS devices, MobiKin Transfer for Mobile Crack can be useful for this purpose.

MobiKin Transfer for Mobile Crack Key Free Download

It can help you easily click and move contacts, text messages, call logs, photos, videos, music, notes, books and other files between Android devices and iDevice devices. With this tool, mobile transmission is very simple.

Related:iMazing Crack + Activation Number [Latest] Free Download

MobiKin Transfer for Mobile Key Features:

Easily Transfer Files to Android Devices:

Can’t find an effective way to transfer data from old phone to new Android device? do not worry! MobiKin Transfer for Mobile Full Version allows you to easily copy data from one device (iDevice/Android) to another phone without restriction. All streaming can be done with just one click, and there is no risk.

  • Android to Android transfer: Copy contacts, text messages, call logs, music, videos, photos, documents and applications between two Android phones.
  • iOS to Android transfer: Sync contacts, text messages, music, videos, photos and books from iOS devices to Android phones.
  • Clear data before copying: Before transferring data, delete the data saved on the target Android phone.

Switch to A New Idevice with One Click:

Are you buying a new iPhone/iPad/iPod and can’t wait to appreciate this great device? Look here! It can help you easily click to switch to a new iDevice. Moreover, the transmission is very fast, without any loss of quality during the movement. Now, see what this program can do for you:

  • Android to iOS transfer: Supports transfer of contacts and books from Android phones to iDevice.
  • iOS to iOS transfer: Supports copying contacts, calendars, notes, bookmarks and books between iOS devices.

Backup and Restore Data on The Device Without Data Loss:

To update your phone to the EditPlus Crack v5.4 Build 3527 + Serial Key Free Download (2021) version or switch from another to another using another carrier, you may need to move some important content between them. But during the move, you may delete or accidentally destroy the data by mistake. Therefore, to avoid this problem, you can use MobiKin Transfer for Mobile to do the following:

  • Easily backup iPhone or Android data to PC/Mac without data loss.
  • Restore the data backed up from iTunes backup to your device as needed.

Support More Than 3000 Phones:

Since the software is designed to help users transfer content between different mobile phones, there is no doubt that the program can be used with various mobile phones of different manufacturers. After hundreds of tests by our technical team, we proved that the software can be used with more than 3000 mobile phones.

  • iDevices: iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone XS Max, droid transfer activation key free - Crack Key For U XS, iPhone XR, iPhone X, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 5S, iPhone 5, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPad Air / mini, new iPad, iPod touch, iPod classic, etc.
  • Android devices: Samsung Galaxy, HTC, Motorola, Sony, LG, Xiaomi, Huawei, ZTE, etc.

MobiKin Transfer for Mobile Activation Key [Working]

43FWSS-LOPIEE-JEIE3-FD343-VFD453 LKI22D-KIOL32-JUTEFS-CDAD3-YTU42

How to Crack MobiKin Transfer for Mobile 3.1.31 Cracked?

  • Download the latest version from here.
  • Make sure to uninstall the old version using IObit Uninstaller Pro.
  • Turn off internet connection and also Virus Guard.
  • Extract the rar file and open the folder (use Winrar to extract rar file)
  • Now install the setup after install.
  • Please cracked file from crack folder and paste it into installation folder.
  • And use serial key to register.
  • Enjoy.
  • Please Share it. Sharing is Always Caring.

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Источник: https://cracksoftware.org/mobikin-transfer-for-mobile-crack-key/

Ransomware

Malicious software used in ransom demands

Ransomware is a type of malware from cryptovirology that threatens to publish the victim's personal data or perpetually block access to it unless a ransom is paid. While some simple ransomware may lock the system so that it is not difficult for a knowledgeable person to reverse, more advanced malware uses a technique called cryptoviral extortion. It encrypts the victim's files, making them inaccessible, and demands a ransom payment to decrypt them.[1][2][3][4] In a properly implemented cryptoviral extortion attack, recovering the files without the decryption key is an intractable problem – and difficult to trace digital currencies such as paysafecard or Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies that are used for the ransoms, making tracing and prosecuting the perpetrators difficult.

Ransomware attacks are typically carried out using a Trojan disguised as a legitimate file that the user is tricked into downloading or opening when it arrives as an email attachment. However, one droid transfer activation key free - Crack Key For U example, the WannaCry worm, traveled automatically between computers without user interaction.[5]

Starting as early as 1989 with ManyCam Pro 7.8.5.30 Crack With License Key Free Download first documented ransomware known as the AIDS trojan, the use of ransomware scams has grown internationally.[6][7][8] There were 181.5 million ransomware attacks in the first six months of 2018. This record marks a 229% increase over this same time frame in 2017.[9] In June 2014, vendor McAfee released data showing that it had collected more than double the number of ransomware samples that quarter than it had in the same quarter of the previous year.[10]CryptoLocker was particularly successful, procuring an estimated US$3 million before it was taken down by authorities,[11] and CryptoWall was estimated by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to have accrued over US$18 million by June 2015.[12] In 2020, the IC3 received 2,474 complaints identified as ransomware with adjusted losses of over $29.1 million. The losses could be more than that according to FBI.[13]

Operation[edit]

The concept of file-encrypting ransomware was invented and implemented by Young and Yung at Columbia University and was presented at the 1996 IEEE Security & Privacy conference. It is called cryptoviral extortion and it was inspired by the fictional facehugger in the movie Alien.[14] Cryptoviral extortion is the following three-round protocol carried out between the attacker and the victim.[1]

  1. [attackervictim] The attacker generates a key pair and places the corresponding public key in the malware. The malware is released.
  2. [victimattacker] To carry out the cryptoviral extortion attack, the malware generates a random symmetric key and encrypts the victim's data with it. It uses the public key in the malware to encrypt the symmetric key. This is known as hybrid encryption and it results in a small asymmetric ciphertext as well as the symmetric ciphertext of the victim's data. It zeroizes the symmetric key and the original plaintext data to prevent recovery. It puts up a message to the user that includes the asymmetric ciphertext and how to pay the ransom. The victim sends the asymmetric ciphertext and e-money to the attacker.
  3. [attackervictim] The attacker receives the payment, deciphers the asymmetric ciphertext with the attacker's private key, and sends the symmetric key to the victim. The victim deciphers the encrypted data with the needed symmetric key thereby completing the cryptovirology attack.

The symmetric key is randomly generated and will not assist other victims. At no point is the attacker's private key exposed to victims and the victim need only send a very small ciphertext (the encrypted symmetric-cipher key) to the attacker.

Ransomware attacks are typically carried out using a Trojan, entering a system through, for example, a malicious attachment, embedded link in a Phishing email, or a vulnerability in a network service. The program then runs a payload, which locks the system in some fashion, or claims to lock the system but does not (e.g., a scareware program). Payloads may display a fake warning purportedly by an entity such as a law enforcement agency, falsely claiming that the system has been used for illegal activities, contains content such as pornography and "pirated" media.[15][16][17]

Some payloads consist simply of an application designed to lock or restrict the system until payment is made, typically by setting the Windows Shell to itself,[18] or even modifying the master boot record and/or partition table to prevent the operating system from booting until it is repaired.[19] The most sophisticated payloads encrypt files, with many using strong encryption to encrypt the victim's files in such a way that only the malware author has the needed decryption key.[1][20][21]

Payment is virtually always the goal, and the victim is coerced into paying for the ransomware to be removed either by supplying a program that can decrypt the files, or by sending an unlock code that undoes the payload's changes. While the attacker may simply take the money without returning the victim's files, it is in the attacker's best interest to perform the decryption as agreed, since victims will stop sending payments if it becomes known that they serve no purpose. A key element in making ransomware work for the attacker is a convenient payment system that is hard to trace. A range of such payment methods have been used, including wire transfers, premium-rate text messages,[22] pre-paid voucher services such as paysafecard,[6][23][24] and the Bitcoincryptocurrency.[25][26][27]

In May 2020, vendor Sophos reported that the global average cost to remediate a ransomware attack (considering downtime, people Easy Cut Studio Keygen, device cost, network cost, lost opportunity and ransom paid) was $761,106. Ninety-five percent of organizations that paid the ransom had their data restored.[28]

History[edit]

See also: History of computer viruses and History of malware

Encrypting ransomware[edit]

The first known malware extortion attack, the "AIDS Trojan" written by Joseph Popp in 1989, had a design failure so severe it was not necessary to pay the extortionist at all. Its payload hid the files on the hard drive and encrypted only their names, and displayed a message claiming that the user's license to use a certain piece of software had expired. The user was asked to pay US$189 to "PC Cyborg Corporation" in order to obtain a repair tool even though the decryption key could be extracted from the code of the Trojan. The Trojan was also known as "PC Cyborg". Popp was declared mentally unfit to stand trial for his actions, but he promised to donate the profits from the malware to fund AIDS research.[29]

The idea of abusing anonymous cash systems to safely collect ransom from droid transfer activation key free - Crack Key For U kidnapping was introduced in 1992 by Sebastiaan von Solms and David Naccache.[30] This electronic money collection method was also proposed for cryptoviral extortion attacks.[1] In the von Solms-Naccache scenario a newspaper publication was used (since bitcoin ledgers did not exist at the time the paper was written).

The notion of using public key cryptography for data kidnapping attacks was introduced in 1996 by Adam L. Young and Moti Yung. Young and Yung critiqued the failed AIDS Information Trojan that relied on symmetric cryptography alone, the fatal flaw being that the decryption key could be extracted from the Trojan, and implemented an experimental proof-of-concept cryptovirus on a Macintosh SE/30 that used RSA and the Tiny Encryption Algorithm (TEA) to hybrid encrypt the victim's data. Since public key cryptography is used, the virus only contains the encryption key. The attacker keeps the corresponding private decryption key private. Young and Yung's original experimental cryptovirus had the victim send the asymmetric ciphertext to the attacker who deciphers it and returns the symmetric decryption key it contains to the victim for a fee. Long before electronic money existed Young and Yung proposed that electronic money could be extorted through encryption as well, stating that "the virus writer can effectively hold all of the money ransom until half of it is given to him. Even if the e-money was previously encrypted by the user, it is of no use to the user if it gets encrypted by a cryptovirus".[1] They referred to these attacks as being "cryptoviral extortion", an overt attack that is part of a larger class of attacks in a field called cryptovirology, which encompasses both overt and covert attacks.[1] The cryptoviral extortion protocol was inspired by the parasitic relationship between H. R. Giger's facehugger and its host in the movie Alien.[1][14]

Examples of extortionate ransomware became prominent in May 2005.[31] By mid-2006, Trojans such as Gpcode, TROJ.RANSOM.A, Archiveus, Krotten, Cryzip, and MayArchive began utilizing more sophisticated RSA encryption schemes, with ever-increasing key-sizes. Gpcode.AG, which was detected in June 2006, was encrypted with a 660-bit RSA public key.[32] In June 2008, a variant known as Gpcode.AK was detected. Using a 1024-bit RSA key, it was believed large enough to be computationally infeasible to break without a concerted distributed effort.[33][34][35][36]

Encrypting ransomware returned to prominence in late 2013 with the propagation of CryptoLocker—using the Bitcoindigital currency platform to collect ransom money. In December 2013, ZDNet estimated based on Bitcoin transaction information that between 15 October and 18 December, the operators of CryptoLocker had procured about US$27 million from infected users.[37] The CryptoLocker technique was widely copied in the months following, including CryptoLocker 2.0 (thought not to be related to CryptoLocker), CryptoDefense (which initially contained a major design flaw that stored the private key on the infected system in a user-retrievable location, due to its use of Windows' built-in encryption APIs),[26][38][39][40] and the August 2014 discovery of a Trojan specifically targeting network-attached storage devices produced by Synology.[41] In January 2015, it was reported that ransomware-styled attacks have occurred against individual websites via hacking, and through ransomware designed to target Linux-based web servers.[42][43][44]

In some infections, there is a two-stage payload, common in many malware systems. The user is tricked into running a script, which downloads the main virus and executes it. In early versions of the dual-payload system, the script was contained in a Microsoft Office document with an attached VBScript macro, or in a windows scripting facility (WSF) file. As detection systems started blocking these first stage payloads, the Microsoft Malware Protection Center identified a trend away toward LNK files with loaris trojan remover 3.0.87 crack - Free Activators Microsoft Windows PowerShell scripts.[45] In 2016, PowerShell was found to be involved in nearly 40% of endpoint security incidents,[46]

Some ransomware strains have used proxies tied to Torhidden services to connect to their command and control servers, increasing the difficulty of tracing the exact location of the criminals.[47][48] Furthermore, dark web vendors have increasingly started to offer the technology as a service, wherein ransomware is sold, ready for deployment on victims' machines, on a subscription basis, similarly to Adobe Creative Cloud or Office 365.[48][49][50]

Symantec has classified ransomware to be the most dangerous cyber threat.[51]

On 28 September 2020, the computer systems at US’ biggest healthcare provider the Universal Health Services, was hit by a ransomware attack. The UHS chain from different locations reported noticing problems, with some locations reporting locked computers and phone systems from early Sunday (27 September).[52][51]

Non-encrypting ransomware[edit]

In August 2010, Russian authorities arrested nine individuals connected to a ransomware Trojan known as WinLock. Unlike the previous Gpcode Trojan, WinLock did not use encryption. Instead, WinLock trivially restricted access to the system by displaying pornographic images and asked users to send a premium-rate SMS (costing around US$10) to receive a code that could be used to unlock their machines. The scam hit numerous users across Russia and neighbouring countries—reportedly earning the group over US$16 million.[17][53]

In 2011, a ransomware Trojan surfaced that imitated the Windows Product Activation notice, and informed users that a system's Windows installation had to be re-activated due to "[being a] victim of fraud". An online activation option was offered (like the actual Windows activation process), but was unavailable, requiring the user to call one of six international numbers to input a 6-digit code. While the malware claimed that this call would be free, it was routed through a rogue operator in a country with high international phone rates, who placed the call on hold, causing the user to incur large international long distance charges.[15]

In February 2013, a ransomware Trojan based on the Stamp.EK exploit kit surfaced; the malware was distributed via sites hosted on the project hosting services SourceForge and GitHub that claimed to offer AOMEI Partition Assistant 9.2.1 Crack License key Free nude pics" of celebrities.[54] In July 2013, an OS X-specific ransomware Trojan surfaced, which displays a web page that accuses the user of downloading pornography. Unlike its Windows-based counterparts, it does not block the entire computer, but simply exploits the behaviour of the web browser itself to frustrate attempts to close the page through normal means.[55]

In July 2013, a 21-year-old man from Virginia, whose computer coincidentally did contain pornographic photographs of underage girls with whom he had conducted sexualized communications, turned himself in to police after receiving and being deceived by FBI MoneyPak Ransomware accusing him of possessing child pornography. An investigation discovered the incriminating files, and the man was charged with child sexual abuse and possession of child pornography.[56]

Exfiltration (Leakware / Doxware)[edit]

The converse of ransomware is a cryptovirology attack invented by Adam L. Young that threatens to publish stolen information from the victim's computer system rather than deny the victim access to it.[57] In a leakware attack, malware exfiltrates sensitive host data either to the attacker or alternatively, to remote instances of the malware, and the attacker threatens to publish the victim's data unless a ransom is paid. The attack was presented at West Point in 2003 and was summarized in the book Malicious Cryptography as follows, "The attack differs from the extortion attack in the following way. In the extortion attack, the victim is denied access to its own valuable information and has to pay to get it back, where in the attack that is presented here the victim retains access to the information but its disclosure is at the discretion of the computer virus".[58] The attack is rooted in game theory and was originally dubbed "non-zero sum games and survivable malware". The attack can yield monetary gain in cases where the malware acquires access to information that may damage the victim user or organization, e.g., the reputational damage that could result from publishing proof that the attack itself was a success.

Common targets for exfiltration include:

  • third party information stored by the primary victim (such as customer account information or health records);
  • information proprietary to the victim (such as trade secrets and product information)
  • embarrassing information (such as the victim's health information or information about the victim's personal past)

Exfiltration attacks are usually targeted, with a curated victim list, and often preliminary surveillance of the victim's systems to find potential data targets and weaknesses.[59][60]

Mobile ransomware[edit]

With the increased popularity of ransomware on PC platforms, ransomware targeting mobile operating systems has also proliferated. Typically, mobile ransomware payloads are blockers, as there is little incentive to encrypt data since it can be easily restored via online synchronization.[61] Mobile ransomware typically targets the Android platform, as it allows applications to be installed from third-party sources.[61][62] The payload is typically distributed as an APK file installed by an unsuspecting user; it may attempt to display a blocking message over top of all other applications,[62] while another used a form of clickjacking to cause the user to give it "device administrator" privileges to achieve deeper access to the system.[63]

Different tactics have been used on iOS devices, such as exploiting iCloud accounts and using the Find My iPhone system to lock access to the device.[64] On iOS 10.3, Apple patched a bug in the handling of JavaScript pop-up windows in Safari that had been exploited by ransomware websites.[65] It recently[when?] has been shown that ransomware may also target ARM architectures like those that can be found in various Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, such as Industrial IoT edge devices.[66]

In August 2019 researchers demonstrated it's possible to infect DSLR cameras with ransomware.[67] Digital cameras often use Picture Transfer Protocol (PTP - standard protocol used to transfer files.) Researchers found that it was possible to exploit vulnerabilities in the protocol to infect target camera(s) with ransomware (or execute any arbitrary code). This attack was presented at the Defcon security conference in Las Vegas as a proof of concept attack (not as actual armed malware).

Notable attack targets[edit]

Further information: List of cyberattacks § Ransomware attacks

Notable software packages[edit]

Reveton[edit]

In 2012, a major ransomware Trojan known as Reveton began to spread. Based on the Citadel Trojan (which itself, is based on the Zeus Trojan), its payload displays a warning purportedly from a law enforcement agency claiming that the computer has been used for illegal activities, such as downloading unlicensed software or child pornography. Due to this behaviour, it is commonly referred to as the "Police Trojan".[68][69][70] The warning informs the user that to unlock their system, they would have to pay a fine using a voucher from an anonymous prepaid cash service such as Ukash or paysafecard. To increase the illusion that the computer is being tracked by law enforcement, the screen also displays the computer's IP address, while some versions display footage from a victim's webcam to give the illusion that the user is being recorded.[6][71]

Reveton initially began spreading in various European countries in early 2012.[6] Variants were localized with templates branded with the logos of different law enforcement organizations based on the user's country; for example, variants used in the United Kingdom contained the branding of organizations such as the Metropolitan Police Service and the Police National E-Crime Unit. Another version contained the logo of the royalty collection societyPRS for Music, which specifically accused the user of illegally downloading music.[72] In a statement warning the public about the malware, the Metropolitan Police clarified that they would never lock a computer in such a way as part of an investigation.[6][16]

In May 2012, Trend Micro threat researchers discovered templates for variations for the United States and Canada, suggesting that its authors may have been planning to target users in North America.[73] By August 2012, a new variant of Reveton began to spread in the United States, claiming to require the payment of a $200 fine to the FBI using a MoneyPak card.[7][8][71] In February 2013, a Russian citizen was arrested in Dubai by Spanish authorities for his connection to a crime ring that had been using Reveton; ten other individuals were arrested on money laundering charges.[74] In August 2014, Avast Software reported that it had found new variants of Reveton that also distribute password-stealing malware as part of its payload.[75]

CryptoLocker[edit]

Main article: CryptoLocker

Encrypting ransomware reappeared in September 2013 with a Trojan known as CryptoLocker, which generated a 2048-bit RSA key pair and uploaded in turn to a command-and-control server, and used to encrypt files using a whitelist of specific file extensions. The malware threatened to delete the private key if a payment of Bitcoin or a pre-paid cash voucher was not made within 3 days of the infection. Due to the extremely large key size it uses, analysts and those affected by the Trojan considered CryptoLocker extremely difficult to repair.[25][76][77][78] Even after the deadline passed, the private key could still be obtained using an online tool, but the price would increase to 10 BTC—which cost approximately US$2300 as of November 2013.[79][80]

CryptoLocker was isolated by the seizure of the Gameover ZeuSbotnet as part of Operation Tovar, as officially announced by the U.S. Department of Justice on 2 June 2014. The Department of Norton reimage repair - Activators Patch also publicly issued an indictment against the Russian hacker Evgeniy Bogachev for his alleged involvement in the botnet.[81][82] It was estimated that at least US$3 million was extorted with the malware before the shutdown.[11]

CryptoLocker.F and TorrentLocker[edit]

In September 2014, a wave of ransomware Trojans surfaced that droid transfer activation key free - Crack Key For U targeted users in Australia, under the names CryptoWall and CryptoLocker (which is, as with CryptoLocker 2.0, unrelated to the original CryptoLocker). The Trojans spread via fraudulent e-mails claiming to be failed parcel delivery notices from Australia Post; to evade detection by automatic e-mail scanners that follow all links on a page to scan for malware, this variant was designed to require users to visit a web page and enter a code before the payload is actually downloaded, preventing such automated processes from being able to scan the payload. Symantec determined that these new variants, which it identified as CryptoLocker.F, were again, unrelated to the original CryptoLocker due to differences in their operation.[83][84] A notable victim of the Trojans was the Australian Broadcasting Corporation; live programming on its television news channelABC News 24 was disrupted for half an hour and shifted to Melbourne studios due to a CryptoWall infection on computers at its Sydney studio.[85][86][87]

Another Trojan in this wave, TorrentLocker, initially contained a design flaw comparable to CryptoDefense; it used the same keystream for every infected computer, making the encryption trivial to overcome. However, this flaw was later fixed.[38] By late-November 2014, it was estimated that over 9,000 users had been infected by TorrentLocker in Australia alone, trailing only Turkey with 11,700 infections.[88]

CryptoWall[edit]

Another major ransomware Trojan targeting Windows, CryptoWall, first appeared in 2014. One strain of CryptoWall was distributed as part of a malvertising campaign on the Zedo ad network in late-September 2014 that targeted several major websites; the ads redirected to rogue websites that used browser plugin exploits to download the payload. A Barracuda Networks researcher also noted that the payload was signed with a digital signature in an effort to appear trustworthy to security software.[89] CryptoWall 3.0 used a payload written in JavaScript as part of an email attachment, which downloads executables disguised as JPG images. To further evade detection, the malware creates new instances of explorer.exe and svchost.exe to communicate with its servers. When encrypting files, the malware also deletes volume shadow copies and installs spyware that steals passwords and Bitcoin wallets.[90]

The FBI reported in June 2015 that nearly 1,000 victims had contacted the bureau's Internet Crime Complaint Center to report CryptoWall infections, and estimated losses of at least $18 million.[12]

The most recent version, CryptoWall 4.0, enhanced its code to avoid antivirus detection, and encrypts not only the data in files but also the file names.[91]

Fusob[edit]

Fusob is one of the major mobile ransomware families. Between April 2015 and March 2016, about 56 percent of accounted mobile ransomware was Fusob.[92]

Like a typical mobile ransomware, it employs scare tactics to extort people to pay a ransom.[93] The program pretends to be an accusatory authority, demanding the victim to pay a fine from $100 to $200 USD or otherwise face a fictitious charge. Rather surprisingly, Fusob suggests using iTunes gift cards for payment. Also, a timer clicking down on the screen adds to the users’ anxiety as well.

In order to infect devices, Fusob masquerades as a pornographic video player. Thus, victims, thinking it is harmless, unwittingly download Fusob.[94]

When Fusob is installed, it first checks the language used in the device. If it uses Russian or certain Eastern European languages, Fusob does nothing. Otherwise, it proceeds on to lock the device and demand ransom. Among victims, about 40% of them are in Germany with the United Kingdom and the United States following with 14.5% and 11.4% respectively.

Fusob has lots in common with Small, which is another major family of mobile ransomware. They represented over 93% of mobile ransomware between 2015 and 2016.

WannaCry[edit]

Main article: WannaCry ransomware attack

In May 2017, the WannaCry ransomware attack spread through the Internet, using an exploit vector named EternalBlue, which was allegedly leaked from the U.S. National Security Agency. The ransomware attack, unprecedented in scale,[95] infected more than 230,000 computers in over 150 countries,[96] using 20 different languages to demand money from users using Bitcoin cryptocurrency. WannaCry demanded US$300 per computer.[97] The attack affected Telefónica and several other large companies in Spain, as well as parts of the British National Health Droid transfer activation key free - Crack Key For U (NHS), where at least 16 hospitals had to turn away patients or cancel scheduled operations,[98]FedEx, Deutsche Bahn, Honda,[99]Renault, as well as the Russian Interior Ministry and Russian telecom MegaFon.[100] The attackers gave their victims a 7-day deadline from the day their computers got infected, after which the encrypted files would be deleted.[101]

Petya[edit]

Main article: Petya (malware)

See also: 2017 cyberattacks on Ukraine

Petya was first discovered in March 2016; unlike other forms of encrypting ransomware, the malware aimed to infect the master boot record, installing a payload which encrypts the file tables of the NTFS file system the next time that the infected system boots, blocking the system from booting into Windows at all until the ransom is paid. Check Point reported that despite what it believed to be an innovative evolution in ransomware design, it had resulted in relatively-fewer infections than other ransomware active around the same time frame.[102]

On 27 June 2017, a heavily modified version of Petya was used for a global cyberattack primarily targeting Ukraine (but affecting many countries[103]). This version had been modified to propagate using the same EternalBlue exploit that was used by WannaCry. Due to another design change, it is also unable to actually unlock a system after the ransom is paid; this led to security analysts speculating that the attack was not meant to generate illicit profit, but to simply cause disruption.[104][105]

Bad Rabbit[edit]

On 24 October 2017, some users in Russia and Ukraine reported a new ransomware attack, named "Bad Rabbit", which follows a similar pattern to WannaCry and Petya by encrypting the user's file tables and then demands a Bitcoin payment to decrypt them. ESET believed the ransomware to have been distributed by a bogus update to Adobe Flash software.[106] Among agencies that were affected by the ransomware were: Interfax, Odesa International Airport, Kyiv Metro, and the Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine.[107] As it used corporate network structures to spread, the ransomware was also discovered in other countries, including Turkey, Germany, Poland, Japan, South Korea, and the United States.[108] Experts believed the ransomware attack was tied to the Petya attack in Ukraine (especially because Bad Rabbit's code has many overlapping and analogical elements to the code of Petya/NotPetya,[109] appending to CrowdStrike Bad Rabbit and NotPetya's DLL (dynamic link library) share 67 percent of the same code[110]) though the only identity to the culprits are the names of characters from the Game of Thrones series embedded within the code.[108]

Security experts found that the ransomware did not use the EternalBlue exploit to spread, and a simple method to inoculate an unaffected machine running older Windows versions was found by 24 October 2017.[111][112] Further, the sites that had been used to spread the bogus Flash updating have gone offline or removed the problematic files within a few days of its discovery, effectively killing off the spread of Bad Rabbit.[108]

SamSam[edit]

In 2016, a new strain of ransomware emerged that was targeting JBoss servers.[113] This strain, named "SamSam", was found to bypass the process of phishing or illicit downloads in favor of exploiting vulnerabilities on weak servers.[114] The malware uses a Remote Desktop Protocolbrute-force attack droid transfer activation key free - Crack Key For U guess weak passwords until one is broken. The virus has been behind attacks on government and healthcare targets, with notable hacks occurring against the town of Farmington, New Mexico, the Colorado Department of Transportation, Davidson County, North Carolina, and most recently, a major breach of security on the infrastructure of Atlanta.[114]

Mohammad Mehdi Shah Mansouri (born in Qom, Iran in 1991) and Faramarz Shahi Savandi (born in Shiraz, Iran, in 1984) are wanted by the FBI for allegedly launching SamSam ransomware.[115] The two have allegedly made $6 million from extortion and caused over $30 million in damages using the malware.[116]

[edit]

On May 7, 2021 a cyberattack was executed on the US Colonial Pipeline. The Federal Bureau of Investigation identified DarkSide as the perpetrator of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack, perpetrated by malicious code, that led to a voluntary shutdown of the main pipeline supplying 45% of fuel to the East Coast of the United States. The attack was described as the worst cyberattack to date on U.S. critical infrastructure. DarkSide successfully extorted about 75 Bitcoin (almost US$5 million) from Colonial Pipeline. U.S. officials are investigating whether the attack was purely criminal or took place with the involvement of the Russian government or another state sponsor. Following the attack, DarkSide posted a statement claiming that "We are apolitical, we do not participate in geopolitics.Our goal is to make money and not creating problems for society."

On May 10, SentinelOne published an analysis of the DarkSide Ransomware attack.

In May 2021, the FBI and Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency issued a joint alert urging the owners and operators of critical infrastructure to take certain steps to reduce their vulnerability to DarkSide ransomware and ransomware in general.

Syskey[edit]

Syskey is a utility that was included with Windows NT-based operating systems to encrypt the user account database, optionally with a password. The tool has sometimes been effectively used as ransomware during technical support scams—where a caller with remote access to the computer may use the tool to lock the user out of their computer with a password known only to them.[117] Syskey was removed from later versions of Windows 10 and Windows Server in 2017, due to being obsolete and "known to be used by hackers as part of ransomware scams".[118][119]

Ransomware-as-a-service[edit]

Ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) became a notable method after the Russia-based[120] or Russian-speaking[121] group REvil staged operations against several targets, including the Brazil-based JBS S.A. in May 2021, and the US-based Kaseya Limited in July 2021.[122] After a July 9, 2021 phone call between United States president Joe Biden and Russian president Vladimir Putin, Biden told the press, "I made it very clear to him that the United States expects when a ransomware operation is coming from his soil even though it’s not sponsored by the state, we expect them to act if we give them enough information to act on who that is." Biden later added that the United States would take the group's servers down if Putin did not.[123][124] Four days later, REvil websites and other infrastructure vanished from the internet.[125]

Mitigation[edit]

If an attack is suspected or detected in its early stages, it takes some time for encryption to take place; immediate removal of the malware (a relatively simple process) before it has completed would stop further damage to data, without salvaging any already lost.[126][127]

Security experts have suggested precautionary measures for dealing with ransomware. Using software or other security policies to block known payloads from launching will help to prevent infection, but will not protect against all attacks[25][128] As such, having a proper backup solution is a critical component to defending against ransomware. Note that, because many ransomware attackers will not only encrypt the victim's live machine but it will also attempt to delete any hot backups stored locally or on accessible over the network on a NAS, it's also critical to maintain "offline" backups of data stored in locations inaccessible from any potentially infected computer, such as external storage drives or devices that do not have any access to any network (including the Internet), prevents them from being accessed by the ransomware. Moreover, if using a NAS or Cloud storage, then the computer should have append-only permission to the destination storage, such that it cannot delete or overwrite previous backups. According to comodo, applying two Attack Surface Reduction on OS/Kernal provides materially reduced attack surface which results in heightened security posture.[129][130][131]

Installing security updates issued by software vendors can mitigate the vulnerabilities leveraged by certain strains to propagate.[132][133][134][135][136] Other measures include cyber hygiene − exercising caution when opening e-mail attachments and links, network segmentation, and keeping critical computers isolated from networks.[137][138] Furthermore, to mitigate the spread of ransomware measures of infection control can be applied.[139] Such may include disconnecting infected machines from all networks, educational programs,[140] effective communication channels, malware surveillance[original research?] and ways of collective participation[139]

File system defenses against ransomware[edit]

A number of file systems keep snapshots of the data they hold, which can be used to recover the contents of files from a time prior to the ransomware attack in the event the ransomware does not disable it.

  • On Windows, the Volume shadow copy (VSS) is often used to store backups of data; ransomware often targets these snapshots to prevent recovery and therefore it is often advisable to disable user access to the user tool VSSadmin.exe to reduce the risk that ransomware can disable or delete past copies.
  • On Windows 10, users can add specific directories or files to Controlled Folder Access in Windows Defender to protect them from ransomware.[141] It is advised to add backup and other important directories to Controlled Folder Access.
  • Unless malware gains root on the ZFS host system in deploying an attack coded to issue ZFS administrative commands, file servers running ZFS are broadly immune to ransomware, because ZFS is capable of snapshotting even a large file system many times an hour, and these snapshots are immutable (read only) and easily rolled back or files recovered in the event of data corruption.[142] In general, only an administrator can delete (but cannot modify) snapshots.

File decryption and recovery[edit]

There are a number of tools intended specifically to decrypt files locked by ransomware, although successful recovery may not be possible.[2][143] If the same encryption key is used for all files, decryption tools use files for which there are both uncorrupted backups and encrypted copies (a known-plaintext attack in the jargon of cryptanalysis. But, it only works when the cipher the attacker used was weak to begin with, being vulnerable to known-plaintext attack); recovery of the key, if it is possible, may take several days.[144] Free ransomware decryption tools can help decrypt files encrypted by the following forms of ransomware: AES_NI, Alcatraz Locker, Apocalypse, BadBlock, Bart, BTCWare, Crypt888, CryptoMix, CrySiS, EncrypTile, FindZip, Globe, Hidden Tear, Jigsaw, LambdaLocker, Legion, NoobCrypt, Stampado, SZFLocker, TeslaCrypt, XData.[145]

In addition, old copies of files may exist on the disk, which has been previously deleted. In some cases, these deleted versions may still be recoverable using software designed for that purpose.

Growth[edit]

Ransomware malicious software was first confined to one or two countries in Eastern Europe and subsequently spread across the Atlantic to the United States and Canada.[146] The number of cyberattacks during 2020 was double that of 2019.[147] The first versions of this type of malware used various techniques to disable the computers[146] by locking the victims system machine (Locker Ransomware) [133]. Ransomware uses different tactics to extort victims. One of the most common methods is locking the device's screen by displaying a message from a branch of local law enforcement alleging that the victim must pay a fine for illegal activity. The ransomware may request a payment by sending an SMS message to a premium rate number. Some similar variants of the malware display pornographic image content and demanded payment for the removal of it.[146]

By 2011 ransomware tactics had evolved. Attackers began using electronic payment methods as well as language localization to the affected device.

Corporations, private entities, governments, and hospitals can be affected by these malicious attacks. In 2016, a significant uptick in ransomware attacks on hospitals was noted. According to the 2017 Internet Security Threat Report from Symantec Corp, ransomware affected not only IT systems but also patient care, clinical operations, and billing. Online criminals may be motivated by the money available and sense of urgency within the healthcare system.[148]

Ransomware is growing rapidly across the internet users but also for the IoT environment[146] which creates a challenging problem to the INFOSEC while increasing the attack surface area. They are evolving into more sophisticated attacks and, they are becoming more resistant; at the same time, they are also more accessible than ever. Today, for a cheap price, the attackers have access to ransomware as a service. The big problem is that millions of dollars are lost by some organizations and industries that have decided to pay, such as the Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center and the MedStar Health.[149] At the end, the pressure to offer services to the patients and keep their lives is so critical that they are forced to pay, and the attacker knows that. The problem here is that by paying the ransom, they are funding the cybercrime.

According to Symantec 2019 ISTR report, for the first time since 2013, in 2018 there was an observed decrease in ransomware activity with a drop of 20 percent. Before 2017, consumers were the preferred victims, but in 2017 this changed dramatically, it moved to the enterprises. In 2018 this path accelerated with 81 percent infections which represented a 12 percent increase.[150] The common distribution method today is based on email campaigns.

The first reported death following a ransomware attack was at a German hospital in October 2020.[151]

An effective and successful cyber awareness training program must be sponsored from the top of the organization with supporting policies and procedures which effectively outline ramifications of non-compliance, frequency of training and a process for acknowledgement of training. Without sponsorship from the “C-level” executives the training cannot be ignored.  Other factors that are key to a successful Cyber Awareness Training program is to establish a baseline identifying the level of knowledge of the organization to establish where the users are in their knowledge prior to training and after. Whichever approach an organization decides to implement, it is important that the organization has policies and procedures in place that provide training that is up to date, performed frequently and has the backing of the entire organization from the top down.

Investment in technology to detect and stop these threats must be maintained, but along with that we need to remember and focus on our weakest link, which is the user.

Criminal arrests and convictions[edit]

Zain Qaiser[edit]

A British student, Zain Qaiser, from Barking, London was jailed for more than six years at Kingston Crown Court for his ransomware attacks in 2019.[152] He is said to have been "the most prolific cyber criminal to be sentenced in the UK". He became active when he was only 17. He contacted the Russian controller of one of the most powerful attacks, believed to be the Lurk malware gang, and arranged for a split of his profits. He also contacted online criminals from China and the US to move the money. For about one and a half years, he posed as a legitimate supplier of online promotions of book advertising on some of the world's most visited legal pornography websites. Each of the adverts that was promoted on the websites contained the Reveton Ransomware strain of the malicious Angler Exploit Kit (AEK)[153] that seized control of the machine. Investigators discovered about £700,000 of earnings, although his network may have earned more than £4m. He may have hidden some money using cryptocurrencies. The ransomware would instruct victims to buy GreenDot MoneyPak vouchers, and enter the code in the Reveton panel displayed on the screen. This money entered a MoneyPak account managed by Qaiser, who would then deposit the voucher payments into an American co-conspirator's debit card—that of Raymond Odigie Uadiale, who was then a student at Florida International University during 2012 and 2013 and later worked for Microsoft. Uadiale would convert the money into Liberty Reserve digital currency and deposit it into Qaiser's Liberty Reserve account.[154]

A breakthrough in this case occurred in May 2013 when authorities from several countries seized the Liberty Reserve servers, obtaining access to all its transactions and account history. Qaiser was running encrypted virtual machines on his Macbook Pro with both Mac and Windows operating systems.[155] He could not be tried earlier because he was sectioned under the UK Mental Health Act at Goodmayes Hospital (where he was found to be using the hospital Wi-Fi to access his advertising sites.) His lawyer claimed that Qaiser had suffered from mental illness.[152] Russian police arrested 50 members of the Lurk malware gang in June 2016.[156] Uadiale, a naturalized US citizen of Nigerian descent, was jailed for 18 months.[157]

Freedom of speech challenges and criminal punishment[edit]

The publication of proof-of-concept attack code is common among academic researchers and vulnerability researchers. It teaches the nature of the threat, conveys the gravity of the issues, and enables countermeasures to be devised and put into place. However, lawmakers with the support of law-enforcement bodies are contemplating making the creation of ransomware illegal. In the state of Maryland, the original draft of HB 340 made it a felony to create ransomware, punishable by up to 10 years in prison.[158] However, this provision was removed from the final version of the bill.[159] A minor in Japan was arrested for creating and distributing ransomware code.[160] Young and Yung have had the ANSI C source code to a ransomware cryptotrojan on-line, at cryptovirology.com, since 2005 as part of a cryptovirology book being written. The source code to the cryptotrojan is still live on the Internet and is associated with a draft of Chapter 2.[161]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ abcdefgYoung, A.; M. Yung (1996). Cryptovirology: extortion-based security threats and countermeasures. IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy. pp. 129–140. doi:10.1109/SECPRI.1996.502676. ISBN .
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Источник: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ransomware
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