Ransomware attackers have already embezzled hundreds of millions of reais in cryptocurrencies this year, according to blockchain analyst firm Chainalysis.In a new report on ransomware, Chainalysis notes that the stolen amount of $ 81 million, or about R $ 425 million is likely to increase, even considering only the first five months of 2022. "$ 81 million should be considered a minimum for now, as the number will almost certainly increase as we identify more ransomware addresses." Ransomware attacks took off in 2020, with victims paying a record $ 406.34 million in cryptocurrency to attackers last year, an increase of more than 337% over 2019, where criminals raised $ 92.94 million.
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Chainalysis notes that those responsible for ransomware tend to move the cryptocurrencies they receive from victims to conventional exchanges, exchanges with flexible compliance standards and mixers, services that seek to overshadow the origin of the currencies. Attackers also tend to “rent” the types of ransomware they use. In a report, the analytics company explains, “Many strains work on the RaaS model (Ransomware as a Service model), in which attackers known as affiliates 'rent' the use of a particular strain of ransomware from its creators or administrators, who in return receive a share of the money from each successful attack that affiliates carry out. Many RaaS affiliates migrate between strains, suggesting that the ransomware ecosystem is smaller than you might think at first glance. ”Chainalysis also notes that most ransomware strains are affiliated with cybercriminal groups in Russia or in Russian-speaking countries.“ Generally speaking, cybercriminals affiliated with Russia and other Russian-speaking countries in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) – an intergovernmental organization of former Soviet countries – are among the most prolific in the world. Russia-affiliated services received more cryptocurrencies from illicit addresses than in any other country, suggesting that cybercriminals affiliated with Russia were the biggest financial beneficiaries of the year of cryptocurrency-based crime. Much of this activity was driven by Hydra, a Russian-based darknet market that, in addition to of drugs, sells stolen data that can be useful to ransomware attackers. ”To avoid losing your files, let alone your cryptocurrencies in any such scam, see the article“ What is ransomware and how to get rid of one? ”.