Think Twice, Pirates, New Ransomware Locks You Up For Good!
Researchers have uncovered a new form of Mac ransomware, and this one’s a little hard to hate. While it’s never okay to write and spread malicious code, this one targets users who download illegal “crack” tool software.
According to a report by TechRadar, “The ransomware payload is hidden in a program that goes by the name of Patcher, which is found on torrent sites and claims to be a crack (to get around needing a license key) for a couple of popular software offerings: Adobe Premiere Pro and Microsoft Office for Mac (and possibly others, as well).”
Interestingly, this ransomware demands payment in Bitcoin to unlock your files, but there’s a problem: the researchers could find no source of connection back to the originator. They also found no payment history for this ransomware, meaning no one has taken the bait yet. In theory, that means that your files are locked and there’s actually no way to buy your way out of it. You’re just done.
Of all the forms of cybercrime making waves right now, ransomware may be the one with the highest growth for the simple fact that it stands to net the originator the most immediate payout. Locking up your network – especially if the encryption key is readily available and is under a strict deadline to purchase – is a popular tactic, and often comes with a hefty yet manageable price tag. Attempting to sell stolen consumer records on the dark web after a data breach, on the other hand, requires more finesse and skill. There’s also a recent glut of stolen information available, which has driven down the asking price for even complete identities.
Therefore, buyer (or non-buyer, in this case) beware: that free download that promises to get you something for nothing might just get you more than you bargained for.