There is a new development in the ongoing NotPetya story. This cyber weapon has caused massive damage to computers, leaving victims unable to recover their files. Someone seized control of the team’s Bitcoin wallet and moved $10, 000 worth of funds to a new address. There is also a new group on the scene who claims they can decrypt all encrypted files.
NotPetya Story Turns Into Telenovela
The NotPetya story is a captivating digital drama. The cyber weapon successfully encrypted computer files on hundreds of computers. Many victims paid the malware developers in Bitcoin to decrypt their files. NotPetya’s original objective may not have been making money. Regardless, that money is on the move now. Someone transferred the funds to a new Bitcoin address.
Over $10,000 worth of Bitcoin was moved from the initial Bitcoin wallet to a new address a few nights ago. This was surprising since the NotPetya team had not shown any signs of life ever since their attack. It is unclear who is responsible for moving the money to this new wallet, or why.
The person responsible for moving the funds made two small payments to Deeppaste and Pastebin. Both of these platforms are often used by hackers to make announcements, which is exactly what the NotPetya team has done. In the message, one user is asking for a 100 Bitcoin payment -worth over $250, 000 at the time of writing – and he or she will give the master decryption key for NotPetya in return.
There are no payment instructions to complete this 100 Bitcoin payment whatsoever. Without an address to send money to, it is doubtful they will get the payment. However, there is a link to a chat room on the darknet where users can find out more information. It is unclear who would pay this 100 Bitcoin payment as it is a steep price to pay for a master decryption key.
This may not be a legitimate offer. Trusting strangers on the internet is difficult enough. Putting your trust in a stranger who is also a criminal operating on the darknet is another story. It will be interesting to see how this story develops further. It is highly likely someone is trying to earn 100 Bitcoin with false promises.
It is interesting to see a potential solution pop up for NotPetya victims. While the legitimacy of this offer will always be in question, it goes to show there may be a potential solution in the future. Victims of this cyber weapon are not pleased with the lack of solutions at their disposal. NotPetya is a very different breed of malicious software.