We all, of course, very well remember the savage attack by the treacherous WannaCry ransomware, which crippled the entire world for a few days in May 2017. Now, the criminals behind that heinous cyberattack have finally collected that ransom that was paid to them by some of the victims. The value of Bitcoins had grown to about $140,000, it again got a boost of 20% on August 1, due to the split in the Bitcoin market, reported Quartz.
After the attackers demanded ransoms from users in order to free their systems, the security researchers could identify three wallets being associated with ransomware's code. According to reports, they had collected a total of around $70,000 in bitcoins from the victims.
The ransom payments kept rolling over throughout the summer, but the value of the gains, gathered by the ransomware, got the 20% boost only on August 1.
Bitcoin Cash project has recently managed to "fork" the Bitcoin blockchain, which is another reason for the boost.
The movement of the bitcoins was first reported by Quartz' Keith Collins, who had implemented a bot to track transactions involving the aforementioned wallets.
However, those movements don't necessarily prove that the hackers have managed to cash out the entire sum. To launder this amount they would have to use a "bitcoin mixer" service in order to try to conceal the transaction record to prevent the cash out from being connected with the malware outbreak.
This process might have become more difficult for the hackers with the recent arrest of Alexander Vinnik in Greece, who had, apparently, operated and owned a stake in the BTC-e Bitcoin exchange. The Justice Department claimed in an indictment that Vinnik was involved in an over $4 billion worth money-laundering operation through BTC-e.