Save Yourself From SpriteCoin Cryptocurrency Ransomware
SpriteCoin, this is another name of ransomware scam that tricks user by introducing itself as a cryptocurrency, which in reality does not exist.
The IT security researchers at Fortinet found this new ransomware, which claims to be a profitable cryptocurrency and asks users to download and make use of it.
In fact, what SpriteCoin does is that it infects the Windows computer and locks the files and does not allow downloading blockchain. This is then followed by the customary method of asking ransom payment in Monero. Monero stands at $322 while they want payers to shed 0.3 Monero, which is something close to $100. According to Fortinet’s blog post, during the payment phase, the victim’s Chrome and Firefox credential store are targeted and sent to a remote website that can be accessed through Tor browser. This means not only the hackers get their hands on user data and money, but also on the stored login credentials.
It is not clear why ransomware is asking for $100 as ransom. Researchers feel maybe they are testing it for the time being and later hit it big when they pick on the big guys.
However, there is another catch, once the victim pays the ransom, rather than receiving the decryption key for their data, crooks behind this scam infect the device with other malware capable of harvesting certificates, image parsing and secretly activating device’s webcam to spy on the victim.
Keeping an offline backup is the best option like how California based Sacremento Regional Transit System. They had the backup ready and when the ransomware asked them for money they didn’t give an ear, but went on to restore the data from the backup. That was a clever move and something the ransomware guys least expected.
On the other side, we have organizations like Hancock health Hospital, which didn’t have a back up of the data, and when they were attacked, the hospital was forced to pay $7000 to retrieve their data. So they learned the fact the hard way, but not everybody is lucky. So the best way to keep you safe is to keep a data in place.
So those who are cryptocurrency investor watch out for SpriteCoin, before you are lured into the scam by the attacker. If you are not sure then just hit the internet and find out the safest Bitcoin wallets.
Julia Sowells923 Posts
Julia Sowells has been a technology and security professional. For a decade of experience in technology, she has worked on dozens of large-scale enterprise security projects, and even writing technical articles and has worked as a technical editor for Rural Press Magazine. She now lives and works in New York, where she maintains her own consulting firm with her role as security consultant while continuing to write for Hacker Combat in her limited spare time.