Government website infected with bitcoin ransomware by 16-year-old teenager
A young hacker breached a Chinese government website in February 2017. Surprisingly, the hacker was detained two days later and found to be a teenager, less than 16 years old. He demanded “bitcoin” to pay for his hard work. Although the bitcoin transaction is difficult to track, local police managed to pin down the suspect in another city, Shenzhen.
According to a report , on 13th February, a government website in the Jieyang Airport Economic Zone was hacked. All of the key documents were locked and cannot be used. Hacker demanded 0.5 BTC (about 3,350 yuan) to unlock the relevant document, If the request was not fulfilled, the ransom would double in 4 days or 1 BTC.
Local policy authority attached great importance to the specific case. A special task force was teamed up by the Network Police Department and the airport PSB (Public Security Bureau). After on-site inspection and online investigation, the police have confirmed the location of the suspect. On the evening of February 15, the police detained the suspect in Luohu District, Shenzhen. The suspect is male and less than 16 years old.
However, similar case in Taiwan received quite different treatments.
It’s reported that 46 colleges in Taiwan were hit by bitcoin ransomware. 3 BTC were demanded by blackmail letter, which was spit out automatically by the printers. Local police force told media that hunting down the hacker were “mission impossible” as bitcoin wallet would’t disclose any information related to identity. Even if they spent a lot of resources on tracking, the efforts may eventually be futile.
According to the Chinese Criminal Laws, any illegal conducts committed through the internet will face legal charges. Anyone who delete, modify, interfere with the computer system that results in function-less equipment, will be sentenced less than five years of imprisonment or criminal detention for serious consequence, or more than five years imprisonment for very serious consequence.
It seems that Bitcoin has become the official payment method for ransomware, completing the final piece of the puzzle. Even kids may utilize the tool to make profits.