Of Spyware, Ransomware and Botnets: A Presage of Things to Come

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By Michela Menting | 3Q 2021 | IN-6231


Threat News is Old, but Dire News


The past few months have been full of news about successful cyberattacks from all areas of the tech world. A ransomware paralyzed Colonial Pipeline and forced it to pay about US$4.4 million to attackers (although that was later recovered by the FBI), and a supply-chain attack against Kaseya affected hundreds of businesses (with the REvil group asking for US$70 million in exchange of the master decrypting tool, and between US$45,000 and US$5 million for individual victims, depending on the company size). Most recently, Saudi Aramco confirmed a significant data leak after a ransomware attack, with cybercriminals demanding US$50 million in ransom.

Another lucrative market that is flourishing is in IoT botnets. Mirai might have been the first large-scale successful IoT botnet-creating malware, but there are plenty of copy-cats out there aggressively trying to wrest control of vulnerable IoT devices from other groups. While the scale of Mirai hasn’t quite been replicated to date, there is a relatively stable contingent of infected devices which are actively being fought over by bo…

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