Extortionists go after Bitcoin users

Prolific bitcoin extortion group DD4BC has ramped up the rate of its attacks over 2015, using new social tactics specifically in order to trap and tarnish the reputation of financial services companies.

It is responsible for nearly 150 attacks, 58 percent of which have targeted financial service companies, Akamai’s Prolexic Security Engineering Research Team (PLXsert) reported on Wednesday. But from June through July 2015, the attacks increased from low-level to more than 20 Gbps in some cases.

According to a report from Akamai, DD4BC has been using the threat of DDoS attacks to secure Bitcoin payments from its victims for protection against future attacks.

In emails sent to targets, DD4BC claimed to have the ability to direct about 500 gigabits of data at victims but Akamai said it had seen no attacks of this magnitude.

A cybercrime organization which calls itself “DD4BC” is blackmailing banks and other financial institutions, threatening to extort, threaten and ultimately embarrass and take down the victims; website unless they pay a ransom in digital currency.

According to Akamai’s report, most of the attacks employed packet floods via protocols like NTP (Network Time Protocol), SSDP (Simple Service Discovery Protocol), UDP (User Datagram Protocol), TCP (Transmission Control Protocol, via SYN and/or GET floods), ICMP (Internet Control Message Protocol), DNS (Domain Name System), and SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol).

Attack methodology by the group is usually via use of multi-vector DDoS attack campaigns, including Layer 7 DDoS in multi-vector attacks, and interestingly (given the vulnerability has been around for so long as a security risk) often by concentrating on the WordPress pingback facility to overwhelm the targeted site.

After identifying a target, DD4BC launches a quick attack on the financial organization to show what it is capable of and then sends an email outlining

Originally appeared at: http://steelerslounge.com/2015/09/extortionists-go-after-bitcoin-users/5190/