Ransomware news trending on Google


University of Utah has released a press statement through is website today that it became a victim of ransomware attack on July 19th,2020. Although the company restored the encrypted data through its backup, the University staff later paid $457,059 as ransom because the hackers threatened the institution of leaking stolen student data online.

Utah University specifically mentioned in its statement that the cyber crooks encrypted around 0.02% of data from the servers of Utah’s College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (CSBS). And as they had their hands on some sensitive files, their ransom demands were finally obliged as the staff was not left with no other choice.

On July 29th,2020 passwords related to the staff, students, faculty members were changed and rest of the precautionary measures like 2FA were put in place to avoid any such cyber incidents in the future.

Coming to the second ransomware news trending on Google, we all know that tens of thousands of servers in China were hit by WannaRen Ransomware in April 2020. But as the entire world was busy following a Corona Virus Pandemic initiated lockdown, the news resources failed to highlight the issue as China was trending in news headlines for all other reasons.

Now reports are in that the ransomware that was modeled in the lines of Wannacry Ransomware 2017 (by exploiting the Eternal Blue vulnerability in Windows machines) infected around thousands of individual and corporate computers operating in China and Taiwan.

According to Chinese anti Virus software provider Qihoo 360, the developers of WannaRen have been operating in the dark world with the name Hidden Shadow and have so far distributed password stealers, keyloggers, remote access Trojans and cryptocurrency mining malware- since 2016.

For some reason, the authors of WannaRen Ransomware have now given up and are seen distributing a decryption key for their file encrypting malware.

Third, South Korean company SK Hynix that is into semiconductors production and supply has hit the google news headlines regarding ransomware. Although the company hasn’t officially confirmed the news, an inside source has stated to a Korean media resource that the 3rd largest chip maker that supplies silicon wafers to companies like Apple Inc has fallen victim to a file encrypting malware group named Maze that also attacked another processor making company called Maxilinear in June this year.

As a matter of proof, Maze Ransomware group has already published around 600 MB of data stolen from the servers of the company and are also seen circulating some email evidence stolen from the servers and related to the managing director of the SK Hynix in Singapore.

More details are awaited!

Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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