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posted by LaminatorX on Sunday January 04 2015, @11:28PM   Printer-friendly
from the drive-by-crypto dept.

Alina Simone writes in the NYT that her mother received a ransom note on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.“Your files are encrypted,” it announced. “To get the key to decrypt files you have to pay 500 USD.” If she failed to pay within a week, the price would go up to $1,000. After that, her decryption key would be destroyed and any chance of accessing the 5,726 files on her PC — all of her data would be lost forever. "By the time my mom called to ask for my help, it was already Day 6 and the clock was ticking," writes Simone. "My father had already spent all week trying to convince her that losing six months of files wasn’t the end of the world (she had last backed up her computer in May). It was pointless to argue with her. She had thought through all of her options; she wanted to pay." Simone found that it appears to be technologically impossible for anyone to decrypt your files once CryptoWall 2.0 has locked them and so she eventually helped her mother through the process of making a cash deposit to the Bitcoin “wallet” provided by her ransomers and she was able to decrypt her files. “From what we can tell, they almost always honor what they say because they want word to get around that they’re trustworthy criminals who’ll give you your files back," says Chester Wisniewski.

The peddlers of ransomware are clearly businesspeople who have skillfully tested the market with prices as low as $100 and as high as $800,000, which the city of Detroit refused to pay. They are appropriating all the tools of e-commerce and their operations are part of “a very mature, well-oiled capitalist machine" says Wisniewski. “I think they like the idea they don’t have to pretend they’re not criminals. By using the fact that they’re criminals to scare you, it’s just a lot easier on them.”

 
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  • (Score: 2) by dyingtolive on Sunday January 04 2015, @11:57PM

    by dyingtolive (952) on Sunday January 04 2015, @11:57PM (#131704)

    Well, as I understand it, Debian is the easy to use Linux distro especially made for tech illiterate moms on the go. I mean, most distros will clog your hard drives (or as the people from Debian call them, "the computer") and clutter up your life in general with unnecessary things like log files, debugging tools, and annoying options like "bypassing the start screen". Who has time for THAT, am I right?

    Not no more. With Debian, your days of having those things available is over!

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  • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Monday January 05 2015, @12:47PM

    by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday January 05 2015, @12:47PM (#131822) Journal

    I'll just leave this here..How to write a Linux virus in 5 easy steps [geekzone.co.nz] along with the follow up [geekzone.co.nz] that covers the BS excuses those that want to wave a penguin flag will use.

      News Flash ALL OSes CAN BE HACKED and the same tricks used to hack Windows users, social engineering, works perfectly on Linux and OSX as well. anybody tells you different? Is using "magical thinking" which is nothing but snake oil and bullshit. Its just the classic "use X and you can't be hacked" with X being anything from routers and VPNs to firewalls and OSes. Its all magical thinking because there is no magical hack free button and if you honestly think Linux will magically protect you? Guess again [slashdot.org] and its not a fluke [slashdot.org] by any means [theregister.co.uk].

    --
    ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 05 2015, @10:42PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 05 2015, @10:42PM (#132003)

    how to write a Linux virus

    Virus == self-replicating
    Something that doesn't automagically spread from box to box is NOT a virus.

    Malicious script != virus
    PURPOSELY giving something executable privileges then PURPOSELY running it in no way resembles a Windoze drive-by infection.

    You've been told BEFORE that that link's title is crap yet you continue to point to it.
    That is called TROLLING.

    ...and what a crap page (construction-wise).
    It won't allow me to link to my favorite comment there (by diddy).

    Felice right below him hits the points I would have made.

    .
    Now, if Linux *was* so easy to infect, Google (with over 1e6 machines running Linux) would constantly be flat on its face and would be in the headlines for that on a recurring basis.
    Doesn't happen.

    -- gewg_

  • (Score: 2) by dyingtolive on Monday January 05 2015, @06:41PM

    by dyingtolive (952) on Monday January 05 2015, @06:41PM (#131924)

    I know your post is just coming from the camp that's sick of hearing "use linux to solve all your security problems no matter how ignorant you are of them," but I WAS just joking...

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  • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Tuesday January 06 2015, @07:54PM

    by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday January 06 2015, @07:54PM (#132325) Journal

    But you can't joke with a FOSSie, just look at the post above and below you. You have one waving his little penguin flag so hard his arm is gonna break off and the other trying to redefine what a fucking virus is, despite the fact that the MSM changed the word virus to mean malware over a fucking decade ago.

    Trying to joke with FOSSies is like trying to joke with religious nutters, its just not a good idea.

    --
    ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
  • (Score: 2) by dyingtolive on Wednesday January 07 2015, @01:23AM

    by dyingtolive (952) on Wednesday January 07 2015, @01:23AM (#132434)

    To some degrees of fanaticism, anything can become a religion.

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    Don't blame me, I voted for moose wang!
  • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Wednesday January 07 2015, @03:29AM

    by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Wednesday January 07 2015, @03:29AM (#132458) Journal

    Wanna know how I spot the difference, why I came up with FOSSie in the first place? Its the logic hoops.

    Take the article we had on Chromebooks recently. I said they are still more restricted than a regular laptop which is why the local Craigslist is full of them for less than $80 whereas any Worst Buy Special with Windows you can wipe and run anything from BSD to WinXP, no restrictions. That is simple, logical, verifiable, and to the point, right? If X can only run Y and Z but Y can run A-Z then X is more restricted than Y, its just common sense.....so what did I get? A Googleite saying "Nuh uh, Chromebooks can run anything a regular laptop can!" and when I asked for a citation, because if that were true I could go grab all those $80 Chromebooks and refurb 'em? He sends me a link to a single article on how to hack a Chromebook PIXEL!! Riiight, because I HAD to be talking about the Pixel, a unit I have better odds of winning Powerball than seeing, right? After all Google isn't selling Chromebooks on price, nope its gotta be luxury!

    THIS is how you tell the nutters from the advocates, its the logic hoops. Nobody sane would go "He is talking about Chromebooks selling for $80, he MUST be talking about the $1600 Pixel Chromebook, right?" No different than how the FOSSie when shown all the Linux websites hacked, shown "How to write a Linux virus in 5 easy steps" doesn't go "Ya know, this is a legitimate point, I should change my debate to take this into account" but instead breaks out a dictionary so they can argue that "it doesn't count" because it doesn't meet the first definition in the Oxford dictionary of a virus, never mind the fact the fourth definition clearly says that ALL malware is commonly called virus by the MSM, all that matters is they find a way to back up their preconceived notion! I saw the same thing when OSX got hit by MacDefender, instead of going "Yep its a bug, but here is why I still prefer OSX over Windows and Linux" they broke out the dictionary because all that matters is "Apple doesn't get bugs". Like anybody who just lost their CC to macDefender would care it doesn't fit the classical definition.

    THAT is why I came up with FOSSie, because there are FOSS advocates that aren't chocked full o crazy or treat their OS as a religion, a FOSSie? No matter how large and flaming that logic hoop is they'l happily jump through it, as long as it backs up their beliefs,like flat earthers arguing the sat pics are faked or young earthers saying Adam rode on a dino. Oh and if you wanna se what the end stage of FOSSieism is? Go look up Robert Pogson, I've been trying for nearly FOUR YEARS to get him to say Microsoft, or MSFT, or even MS but because he is FOSSied so hard he has Voldemort [tmrepository.com] so all you will EVAR get is "the OS from Redmond" or "M$". I guess they think they will offend St iGNUcious if they say the name of "the enemy" or something. Total batshit dude, total batshit.

    --
    ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
  • (Score: 2) by cafebabe on Monday January 05 2015, @06:05PM

    by cafebabe (894) on Monday January 05 2015, @06:05PM (#131912) Journal

    News Flash ALL OSes CAN BE HACKED

    Maybe. However, some of us prefer to start with our pants up rather than our pants down.

    --
    1702845791×2
  • (Score: 2) by dyingtolive on Sunday January 04 2015, @11:59PM

    by dyingtolive (952) on Sunday January 04 2015, @11:59PM (#131705)

    Forgot to AC up. That's... gonna be some karma burn there.

    :)

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    Don't blame me, I voted for moose wang!
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 07 2015, @03:01PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 07 2015, @03:01PM (#132583)

    If some day there's gonna be a wikipedia entry for soylentnews trolling phenomena (which is not instantly deleted), I'm gonna buy you a beer, or three. Deal?

  • (Score: 2) by frojack on Monday January 05 2015, @12:23AM

    by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Monday January 05 2015, @12:23AM (#131708) Journal

    Probably no karma penalty, it was on target and mildly funny to boot.

    However, that said, I've heard it alleged that there are versions of this encryption virus that can affect linux. Don't know how it works, but you have a running process either in a pdf reader, or a browser, and if you can break the browser's sandbox (not that hard, I've been told), you would be off to the races, at least for that user's directory.

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  • (Score: 1) by linuxrocks123 on Monday January 05 2015, @06:07AM

    by linuxrocks123 (2557) on Monday January 05 2015, @06:07AM (#131775) Journal

    As of 2013 Linux people were claiming not to have heard of anything happening to Linux: http://www.everydaylinuxuser.com/2013/12/16-ways-to-beat-cryptolocker-and.html [everydaylinuxuser.com]

    I found this but it's just someone's browser being locked up; mv .mozilla .mozilla.save fixed it: http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=90&t=143453 [linuxmint.com]

  • (Score: 2) by dyingtolive on Monday January 05 2015, @03:47AM

    by dyingtolive (952) on Monday January 05 2015, @03:47AM (#131743)

    Well, mainstream badware for Linux has kind of been long in the coming now. It wouldn't surprise me if you're 100% right.

    --
    Don't blame me, I voted for moose wang!
  • (Score: 2) by frojack on Monday January 05 2015, @07:17AM

    by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Monday January 05 2015, @07:17AM (#131785) Journal

    Well, mainstream badware for Linux has kind of been long in the coming now.

    Because its harder to do.
    Its not enough to get the executable on your disk, you have to mark it executable as well.
    You might be able to do this with a running process in a browser, or a script in a pdf, but, like I mentioned, you have to break the sandbox to do that, all the low hanging fruit has been trapped out.

    If you are running Security Enhanced Linux, you can prevent anything in the user's directory from being executed. Same with Mac ACLs.

    The problem comes with script languages. With scripts, all you have to do is launch the script handler, and point it at the script. Many of these scripting languages do not require the execute bit set on the script itself:

    echo "echo Hello World" > helo
    sh helo

    This kind of thing still relies on browser sanboxing to protect against.

    --
    No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
  • (Score: 2) by dyingtolive on Monday January 05 2015, @06:38PM

    by dyingtolive (952) on Monday January 05 2015, @06:38PM (#131923)

    You know, I've done that a million times in python and have never even considered the lack of execution bit before... Surely that part could be facilitated through as much social engineering as getting someone to open a sketchy attachment though.

    "To view your invoice in Ubuntu, please follow these easy directions: Save the sh file to your hard drive, type in Terminal from Unity, and then type the command "sh badtimes.sh".

    What would be really cool is if you could come up with some sort of single file that could be malicious in both linux and windows. A naughty pdf that had some sort of script embedded at the top of it or something. I'm sure most file types are pretty touchy about their header information, but there's probably at least one out there that would allow it. I know mp3s let you embed all kinds of crazy stuff in them, but I don't know if you can put it at the top of the file.

    --
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