News of the criminal demand of $7.5 million worth of Monero following major ransom ware attacks on Telecom Argentina S.A have hit the media just a week after the most brazen twitter hack of the century.
The twitter hack saw over a $100 thousand worth of cryptocurrencies donation turn out to be one of the most audacious brazen online scam ever.
The employees of Telecom Argentina S.A have revealed that these ransomware attacks have been on since last week Wednesday. Initially they did not avert their minds to the fact that these may be an online systems attack.
They swept the unusual situation aside as one of those insignificant IT glitches, but to their surprise the criminals have damaged the company’s IT systems and continue to have it on lock.
During their interview with a Spanish site, elperiodista.com, unnamed workers at Telecom Argentina S.A revealed that they had been warned not to open their electronic emails or their files. This move backfired as one Twitter user, Alex Cruger, disclosed that the criminals hit them with further threats.
It appears that the criminals have demanded a ransom of $7.5 million in Monero (XMR) which they declared must be paid before the 21st day of July. The criminals promised not to unlock the company’s system until the ransom is paid.
Worse still, they warned that if the requested sum is not paid before the date communicated, the company will have to pay double the requested ransom.
Following this unusual ask for a huge sum in Monero, intelligent stakeholders have taken it upon themselves to understand the rationale behind why the sum of money has to be in Monero and not any other type of currency.
The CEO and Founder of Mana Security, Tim Ismilyaev, explained that:
“It’s especially strange to ask for $7.5M in monero – it’s about 13% of daily trading volumes and would significantly impact the price.”
He maintained that there could be more than meets the eyes with this brazen systems attack followed by a major Monero (XMR) ransom ask.
Monero happens to be privacy-centric; because of this, a number of trading platforms have delisted the crypto coin for that reason.
Ismilyaev highlighted that because the coin has lower liquidity on trading platforms, many investors will rather not use it for large cash outs. He continued that “99% of ransomware attacks use bitcoin for this reason.”
He believed that “attackers don’t expect Telecom Argentina to pay such a big check, but they probably already have Monero and want to sell it for a better price after the price pump.”
What remains at large is whether or not Telecom Argentina will negotiate with these terrorists.
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