A business has been recently forced to pay a $3000 ransom to hackers who had encoded its financial records. Hours after discovering the encrypted data, TDC Refrigeration and Electrical received an email requiring cash for the password.
Hackers had encrypted the data with 256 bit AES, IT manager Matt Cooper had told SCMagazine.com.au. The money was paid up by the request of the hackers through Western Union and Liberty Reserve, a favourite process of money transfer in underground circles.
Attackers had, in broken English claimed that child pornography was discovered on the victim’s computer and payment must be made to unlock the files, owner Jeremy Spoehr told ABC radio Alice Springs.
“They had demanded the ransom within seven days, or it would go up another $1000, and again for every week the payment is late,” Cooper said. “I guess this is their way of making sure victims don’t try to crack the encryption.”
Later versions prevented users from entering safe mode and used two different passwords to encrypt files, preventing users from recovering data.