Ryuk ransomware scheme nets over 705 BTC in five months

14 Jan, 2019 | Updated: 14 Jan, 2019
by David Robb
Security
Ryuk ransomware scheme nets over 705 BTC in five months

A ransomware scheme known as Ryuk has been forcing affected users to part with their funds since August 2018. The hackers behind the malware usually demand payment in Bitcoin, and have made over 705 BTC so far, as reported by ZDNet.

A number of cyber-security research teams have released reports on the Ryuk malware, including McAfee and Crowdstrike. It is apparently a modified version of another notorious ransomware program known as Hermes, and it has succeeded in extorting BTC a total of 52 times.

These 52 transactions were made from 37 different Bitcoin addresses. The smallest transaction was for a sum of 17 BTC, and the largest ransom paid out was a total of 99 BTC.

Researchers believe the Ryuk ransomware is likely Russian in origin, despite initial reports tying it to North Korea. A team of hackers referred to as Lazarus and apparently based in North Korea are believed to be responsible for almost half of all crypto exchange hacks that have taken place since 2017. 

Read more: Over 30 crypto holders hit by North Korean hackers, as exchanges improve securityNew extortion scheme tricks users into installing ransomware on their device

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