A doctor born in France and serving in Venezuela was arrested for developing a Thanos Ransomware builder. According to a report released by the Department of Justice(DoJ), the 54-year-old named Moises Luis Zagala Gonzalez developed a software dubbed Ransomware builder that allows users to develop their own malware.
Interestingly, the Cardiologist turned software developer sold ransomware packages to cybercriminals who then used that malicious application for installing file-encrypting malware and Trojans on corporate networks.
Zagala not only developed and sold ransomware but was into the business of selling data-stealing tools and files that can compromise systems. He used to accept cryptocurrency or fiat currency in return for the Thanos Ransomware and is suspected to be involved in money laundering services as well.
The arrest of Zagala took place in a cinematic manner after the FBI set up a trap for him in June 2020. First, they acted as a hacker’s group to purchase the ransomware and then, after winning his trust, slowly coaxed him into a digital trap that revealed his location and other details early this year, leading to his arrest.
To date, we have seen ethical hackers or fresh IT graduates turning into cybercriminals. But this time, it’s a doctor who turned into a cyber crook to conduct the business of ransomware-as-a-service online.
Note- Ransomware is a file-encrypting malware that, when induced into the network encrypts files until a ransom is paid in digital currency. However, in the past three years, those involved in spreading file-encrypting malware are first stealing data and then locking up the database from access to pressurize the victim to pay up. And if the victim cannot pay the ransom, hackers sell the stolen data online for monetary benefits.