FBI: Don't pay bitcoin to ransomware extortionists

posted about 6 years ago
The FBI has changed its stance on ransomware extortionists saying people targeted should refuse to pay the bitcoin ransom despite a previous statement from the FBI encouraging victims to pay a ransom.

At a recent Federal Trade Commission’s Fall Technology Series, supervisory special agent for the FBI’s Cyber Division, Will Bales, said that businesses or individuals targeted by ransomware should refuse to pay the ransom.

He said:

"People have to remember that ransomware does not affect just one person or one business. It will more than likely move on and affect somebody else. And for those who pay the ransom, it only encourages them to extort the next person."

According to the U.S. Justice Department, ransomware attacks quadrupled in 2016 with an average of 4,000 per day. The FBI has previously revealed that ransomware costs amounted to $209 million in the first three months of this year. This is compared to a total of $24 million for the twelve months of 2015.
Tags: news, opinion, bitcoin