- Kaspersky’s report shows that ransomware payments in crypto will reduce in 2023.
- It attributes the reduction to improvement in regulations and tracking.
- Over $600 million worth of crypto was paid as ransomware in 2021.
Recently, the crypto ecosystem witnessed the rollout of various regulatory and tracking measures to tackle cyber crooks. A closer look showed the improvement in the development of these tools.
Similarly, Government agencies and bodies have continued to enact regulatory frameworks and laws to guide the crypto space.
Kaspersky’s Report on Cyber crooks
Kaspersky, a cybersecurity firm, reported that Bitcoin (BTC) would become less enticing to cybercriminals. You would recall that the use of Bitcoin for ransomware negotiations and payment has increased in the last couple of years.
With improved technologies and regulations, cyber crooks will find it hard to move funds received as ransomware safely.
In a report by Chainalysis, crypto-based ransomware totaled about $600 million in 2021. Significantly, some of these biggest payments were made in BTC as demanded by the criminals.
Similarly, the report also showed that the average ransomware size increased from $25,000 to $118,000 between 2019 and 2021. The report revealed about 140 ransomware strains — contributing to more than 75 percent of the strains reported between 2019 and 2021.
Similarly, as of January 2022, the size of ransomware crypto-based payments stood at $692 million. The largest ransomware strain by revenue in 2021 was perpetuated by Conti, extorting at least $180 million from victims.
Furthermore, the Kaspersky report notes that these activities will reduce, and the cyber crooks will find other methods. Hence, some criminal methods they will deploy include fake initial coin offerings, NFTs, and smart contract hacks.
Analyzing the Activities of Cyber crooks
Cyber crooks or cybercriminals continue to pose a big threat to the mainstream adoption of cryptocurrency. These individuals have several ways of gaining unauthorized access to wallets and smart contracts. They include phishing, hacking, and several scamming schemes.
Whichever method they deploy, they will alter the information of the compromised wallet and steal huge amounts of funds.
Since the Kaspersky report noted that the criminal would shift to smart contract exploits, ICO scams, and all— it is expedient to identify the damages they have caused so far.
Since then, these criminal activities have increased, with Decentralized Finance protocols accounting for the highest losses. Significantly, as of October 2022, about $718 million was stolen across 11 different attacks in various DeFi protocols.
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