Bloomberg reporter Drake Bennet says of ransomware "If I could do it, anyone could do it."
In as little as three steps, cybercriminals can turn massive profits per month by infecting victims with ransomware using Ransomware as a Service (RaaS). By spending little to nothing, criminals can get the malicious code, an online kit that acts as an administration system for an attack campaign, and a ready source of victims from a compromised site. Criminals can then make $100,000 a month or more with minimal work using RaaS.
"The money is there, and the economy is there," said Karl Sigler, a threat intelligence specialist at Trustwave. "If you lack the morals and ethics, it can be easy to get into."
Security analysts are also crediting the virtual currency bitcoin as the key to the growth of ransomware. Bitcoin is a completely anonymous digital currency, created and held electronically. Transactions are made with no middlemen (banks), have no transaction fees, and there is no need to give your real name. More and more merchants are accepting them. You can buy web hosting services, malware, and even a pizza or manicure.
"That's what really enabled the ransomware problem to explode," said Mikko Hypponen, Chief Research Officer at F-Secure. "Once the criminals were able to collect their ransom without getting caught, nothing was stopping them."
Bloomberg Reporter Sabotages Editor's Desktop
Bloomberg reporter Drake Bennet wanted to see how easy it was to create ransomware. The self-proclaimed non-techie was able to create ransomware with a little bit of patience and $150 in Bitcoin. This shows just how easy it is to step into the world of cybercrime. Bennet said, "If I could do it, anyone could do it."
With little barrier to entry, almost no worry of being caught, and $100,000 per month profit, it is no wonder ransomware has exploded over the past several years. Keep your computer safe from ransomware with CryptoStopper. CryptoStopper is an added layer of defense that detects and kills actively running ransomware in milliseconds.