A new ransomware variant is sweeping through Russia, Ukraine, and Turkey, towards Eastern Europe.
(CCM) — A new ransomware variant called Bad Rabbit is on the loose and so far has infected computers belonging to companies in Germany, Turkey, Russia, and Ukraine, according to the BBC. The software works in a similar way to the recent WannaCry and Petya ransomware variants that caused havoc around the world earlier this year.
"In some of the companies, the work has been completely paralysed — servers and workstations are encrypted," Ilya Sachkov, Russian cyber-security firm Group-IB's chief, told the TASS news agency, according to the BBC report.
Bad Rabbit has also affected a Ukrainian airport and an underground railway system in Kiev, Ukraine's capital.
The ransomware makes the data stored on infected computers inaccessible by encrypting it and demands a ransom payable in Bitcoin for the keys needed to decrypt the data. Early ransomware variants demanded whole Bitcoins as payment, but because the value of Bitcoin has skyrocketed from around $200 in 2015 to almost $6000 today, the criminals responsible for Bad Rabbit are demanding just 0.05 Bitcoins (about $280).
The U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (CERT) recommends that companies do not pay a ransom to ransomware extortionists because "this does not guarantee that access will be restored."
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