Ransomware has been taking many forms in the security threat landscape the past few months, but no other crypto-ransomware type has been reported to be able to “speak” to its victims.
First reported by Trend Micro, RANSOM_CERBER.A speaks through a recorded message, saying, “Attention! Your documents, photos, databases, and other important files have been encrypted!”
Ransomware usually shows victims messages or images with details pertaining to how to pay the ransom and recover their encrypted files – not talk and make demands to the victim.
The report also brings up how this is similar to REVETON, a police ransomware that is able to talk to its victim in their local language or based on their current location.
CERBER, however, is only able to speak in English. On the other hand, it gives its victims the option to choose their preferred language once they start up the ransomware program.
“Attention! Your documents, photos, databases, and other important files have been encrypted!”
The ransomware team behind CERBER initially demands 1.24 Bitcoins from their victims. This then doubles to 2.48 Bitcoins if not paid in a week’s time.
Trend Micro also discover how this particular strain of ransomware can be customised by a knowing user – giving the user options in what the ransom note contains; which file types are targeted; and countries that are blacklisted.
This lead the researchers to believe this ransomware variant was designed to be sold to other criminals on the online black market as it can be tailored to their requirements.
The Trend Micro Smart Protection Network feedback also showed that the malware is being distributed through malvertisments. The Nuclear exploit kit, used by cybercriminals in this case, is amongst the top exploit kits used today.
Reports related to RANSOM_CERBER.A also stated that this strain is prevalent in the Russian black market, leading them to believe that CERBER might be more rampant in the near future.
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