Monday, 29 May, 2017

Hackers who infected 200000 machines have only made $50000 worth of bitcoin

CIOL Bitcoin Digital currency or criminal currency Hackers who infected 200000 machines have only made $50000 worth of bitcoin
Frank Williams | 19 May, 2017, 12:00

Payments from victims of the ransomware were sent to three bitcoin addresses, according to James Smith, yet the hackers still did not move any of the coins they received to any other addresses.

You can use bitcoin the same way, but unlike a credit card, the transactions you make using the currency are completely anonymous. The coins are created by users who "mine" them by lending computing power to verify other users' transactions.

That makes spending the bitcoins or cashing out of them into another currency without getting caught a tricky task, especially when you've already attracted widespread global attention. The coins also can be bought and sold on exchanges with US dollars and other currencies.

A key reason for bitcoin's dominance in the nefarious online underworld, say technologists and cybercrime experts, is its size - the total value of all bitcoins in circulation is more than twice that of the nearest of hundreds of rivals. A year ago, one was worth $457.04, which means that it's almost quadrupled in the last 12 months. It fell by the same amount again in 10 days during March.

Bitcoins are basically lines of computer code that are digitally signed each time they travel from one owner to the next.

The digital payment system is peer-to-peer and transactions take place between users directly, without an intermediary and can be made anonymously.

These techniques are not foolproof, however - chain-hopping, for example, relies on unregulated exchanges that do not carry out know-your-customer (KYC) checks, and security firms say they will develop ways to trace such methods. Bitcoin is still not very widely accepted, and can only be spent at online vendors, or converted to a local-base currency for withdrawal.

Toomey says GOP striving for middle ground on Medicare expansion
This increased funding will greatly benefit the Central Valley, which has 57 community health centers serving the community. The bill - commonly referred to by its abbreviation, the AHCA - would directly impact Access Health , Wadleigh said.

Less than $70,000 has been paid in the recent ransomware cyberattack, White House Homeland Security adviser Tom Bossert told a daily briefing on Monday.

So far, it looks to be about $55,000, according to a bot designed by the news site Quartz that is tracking the amount of money in the attackers' wallets.

The worms quickly scanned computers with vulnerability, in this case the older versions of Microsoft Windows, and used those computers as hackers' command and control centers.

Some businesses have jumped on the bitcoin bandwagon amid a flurry of media coverage. Is that why the WannaCry attackers picked bitcoin as a form of payment? It encrypted users' computer files and displayed a message demanding $300 to $600 worth of the digital currency bitcoin to release them; failure to pay would leave the data scrambled and likely beyond fix. A year ago, activity was closer to 230,000 transactions per day.

The bitcoin network works by harnessing individuals' greed for the collective good.

It has been mining the digital currency using malicious computer programs since as early as 2013, he said.

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