Tech

The Crooks Behind WannaCry Ransomware Launch Monthly Data Dump Service

The Crooks Behind WannaCry Ransomware Launch Monthly Data Dump Service

No one appears to have paid the Shadow Brokers for access to the Equation arsenal in the past, at least as far as it's publicly known.

He added that most of the exploits The Shadow Brokers May release are still patchable, though exploits to Android handsets might remain "devastating".

Despite the availability of fixes, the exploits that the Shadow Brokers still have could lead to even more damage on a global scale.

In June, TheShadowBrokers is announcing "TheShadowBrokers Data Dump of the Month" service.

It also threatened to dump data from banks using the SWIFT global money transfer network and from Russian, Chinese, Iranian or North Korean nuclear and missile programs, without providing further details.

Given that the Wannacry attack has already proven the potency of the materials in their possession, it is rather alarming to consider what could be contained in their next set of leaks, especially if they actually have information regarding the nuclear programs of countries.

The hacking group said it would release tools to subscribers each month or would "go dark permanently" if the "responsible party" bought all the tools for a lump sum, suggesting that the Shadow Brokers could be willing to hand over stolen hacking tools to the NSA for a price. Shadow Brokers assert that they have access to hacking tools which can break and gain access to the world's most used computers, mobile and browsers.

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"TheShadowBrokers is launching new monthly subscription model", it explained. As is to be expected, the group notes that what members do with the exploits is completely up to them.

Few buyers came forward, the group said in its blog post.

It isn't clear where the Shadow Brokers got the NSA hacking tools, but the arrest of former NSA contractor Harold T. Martin III last August for stealing a massive amount of data has made him the most likely suspect. "Microsoft has been critical of the U.S. government over this stockpiling of vulnerability code, and said this was equivalent to the government losing it stock of 'Tomahawk missiles".

Any U.S. government organizations are unlikely to negotiate with the hackers, Dillon says.

In an irregular move, Microsoft skipped its scheduled monthly patch-release day in February before resuming on March 14, at which point the company quietly fixed many vulnerabilities that the Shadow Brokers then released one month later, in April.

Although nobody knows who the Shadow Brokers are, various theories point to either a disgruntled insider or a group with ties to Russian Federation.

They were easy to be exploited because they were not getting regular security patches from Microsoft automatically. Microsoft president and chief legal officer Brad Smith said earlier this week the WannaCry attack used elements stolen from NSA cyber warfare operations.