Kaspersky Lab has released a new tool to help free computer files ‘held hostage’ by bitcoin ransomware.
CoinVault, which has infected 700 computers in the Netherlands so far, is a strain of malware that demands a rising amount of bitcoin to unlock encrypted files on the victim’s computer.
Thanks to Kaspersky’s ransomeware decrypter, users may now be able to do so for free.
The tool was created after Dutch authorities shared a database of CoinVault’s information (including IVs, keys and bitcoin wallets) with Kaspersky as part of an investigation in the country.
Jornt van der Wiel, a security researcher at Kaspersky’s global research and analysis team, told CoinDesk that the team hopes to work with law enforcement add more decryption keys to its database.
“We have uploaded a huge number of keys onto the site, and together with the National High Tech Crime Unit of the Netherlands’ police we are continuously updating the information.”
To pay or not to pay
Though Kaspersky and the Dutch authorities have uncovered a sizeable chunk of data, users whose keys are not on the list, or have been targeted by a different strain of