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Hacker gangs reinvesting ransom payments


A cybersecurity expert has warned that ransomware gangs are investing their ill-gotten gains into making attacks more dangerous. Mikko Hyppönen, Chief Research Officer at WithSecure, declared that, until now, cybersecurity teams had the help of artificial intelligence systems designed at preventing attacks. Now, however, he says that criminals might be reinvesting their ransom gains to hire experts of their own. “Some of these groups have so much cash — or bitcoin, rather — that they could now potentially compete with legit security firms for talent in AI and machine learning”, he added. Hacker gang Conti, for example, earned around $180 million in cryptocurrency ransoms in 2021. Some of these profits are now being invested in AI expertise, zero-day exploits, and elite penetration testers. According to Hyppönen, this could create the most significant security threat in years.