"Ransomwhere" project tracks payment demands
A new project, Ransomwhere, aims to put a dollar figure on the profit-driven attacks that have become a headache for businesses, governments and non-profits around the globe.
Why it matters: While ransomware is clearly a growing problem, there hasn't been a good way to keep tabs on how much is being paid, and to whom.
How it works: Ransomwhere is an "open, crowdsourced ransomware payment tracker" launched by Jack Cable, a former government cybersecurity expert who now works as a security architect for Krebs Stamos Group.
- Anyone can enter a payment demand they have received, though people are required to submit a screenshot of the ransom note as one means of verifying the legitimacy of claims posted to Ransomwhere.
- The site also keeps a running tally of bitcoin payments by taking advantage of the public nature of blockchain ledgers.
- As of Sunday night, Ransomwhere had tracked just over $60 million in ransomware payments.
What they're saying: Cable told Axios that he launched Ransomwhere because no one was really tracking the total impact and it's hard to address what you can't measure.
- "Without knowing the full details of ransomware economics, it's hard to tell if actions have an effect on criminal behavior," Cable said. "Knowing that bitcoin is entirely public, I started building Ransomwhere as a method to crowdsource information on ransomware payments."
Go deeper: Ransomware epidemic intensifies