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4/21/2016
10:00 AM
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A Brief History Of Ransomware

A top ten chronicle of more than a decade of notable ransomware variants and trends.
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The rise in ransomware extortion as a reliable weapon for cybercriminals to make the most of victims' system vulnerabilities has now spanned the better part of a decade. But the last year has seen hockey stick growth as attackers perfected their methods and targeted victims. At this point ransomware has established itself as $60 million a year criminal enterprise, with that number sure to rise as the income is funneled into improving the next ransomware generation.

"Businesses often believe that paying the ransom is the most cost effective way of getting their data back - and this may also be the reality," writes William Largent, threat researcher with Cisco Talos. "The problem we face is that every single business that pays to recover their files, is directly funding the development of the next generation of ransomware. As a result of this we're seeing ransomware evolve at an alarming rate."

In order to understand where ransomware is going, it is important to understand its roots. In this slide show, we take a look at some of the notable variants that have cropped up over the years. Special thanks to Largent and researchers at Cisco Talos who accumulated and condensed much of the info included here. You can check out their take on Ransomware: Past, Present and Future here

 

Ericka Chickowski specializes in coverage of information technology and business innovation. She has focused on information security for the better part of a decade and regularly writes about the security industry as a contributor to Dark Reading.  View Full Bio

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Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Ninja
4/24/2016 | 11:08:33 AM
Link to spam
It is interesting to compare the rise of ransomware with the downfall (at least, from its heyday) of pharma spam.  As botnet masters and other black-hatters lost one of their primary sources of income, they had to start using their machines and know-how in other ways to make money.
MKultra
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MKultra,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/24/2016 | 4:00:46 PM
ransomware - new tread or nonsense ?!!
hi fans,

well - i had never trouble with this special type of malware insofar, although i get lots of emails every day,

about 250 - 400, mostly newletters from newspapers all over the world !!!

i am very careful NOT clicking attachment links in emails, so the chance to get ransomware is very low.

i have lots of security software on my notebook - eg. antivius (avast free edition), good firewall (comodo), anti-

spyware (spyhunter and spybot search + destroy), anti-rootkit (avg) and many others, at last an intrusion                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

detection system (sax 2), if an excellent blackhat enters my computer ...

 

 

thats all for now - hope to hear from you

sincerly

diplom-engineer matthias klein (ANONYMOUS-hacker and universal genius !!!)
Nanireko
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Nanireko,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/26/2016 | 1:57:37 PM
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