A budding ransomware group donated a part of the ransom calls for that it had beforehand extorted from its victims to 2 charities.
On October 13, the Darkside ransomware group introduced the donations in a weblog publish on its darkish internet portal. As quoted by ZDNet:
As we stated within the first press launch – we’re focusing on solely massive worthwhile companies. We expect it’s truthful that among the cash they’ve paid will go to charity. Regardless of how unhealthy you suppose our work is, we’re happy to know that we helped change somebody’s life.
The ransomware gang particularly made donations of 0.88 BTC (price roughly $10,000) to 2 charities: Kids Worldwide, a worldwide non-profit group devoted to serving to kids in poverty, and The Water Undertaking, a corporation which works to supply clear water to villages in sub-Saharan Africa.
Screenshots of the tax receipts that Darkside acquired for donating to the 2 charities. (Supply: ZDNet)Reporters at BBC Information reached out to each charities concerning the donations. A spokesperson from Kids Worldwide clarified that the group wouldn’t maintain the reward if it constituted stolen funds, whereas The Water Undertaking had not responded to its requests for remark on the time of reporting.
BBC Information additionally contacted The Giving Block, a platform which helps non-profit organizations actively elevate cryptocurrency funds. That platform stated that it was nonetheless investigating the matter and that it might return the funds to their rightful proprietor if it in the end realized that they had been stolen monies.
It’s unclear why Darkside, which has been energetic since August 2020, donated a part of its ransom calls for to Kids Worldwide and The Water Undertaking.
What is obvious is that this charitable act doesn’t negate the hurt Darkside brought about to its victims. The monies it donated didn’t belong to the group within the first place.
Given the continuing campaigns of Darkside and different ransomware gangs, organizations and customers alike ought to take steps to forestall a ransomware an infection from occurring within the first place. This useful resource is an effective place to start out.