TorrentLocker is one of the cyber world’s most recent forms of ransomware, infecting several computer systems all over the globe and taking data hostage, refusing to release it unless a bitcoin ransom is paid.
As of now, the primary victims appear to be countries in Europe. Nations such as Italy, Germany, France, Spain and the Czech Republic are on the list of prime targets, along with other nations such as the U.K., Australia and Canada.
But a big shocker, however, is that out of approximately 40,000 victims only about 570 have ultimately paid the bitcoin ransom that TorrentLocker requires. In other words, an estimated 98.6 percent did not fork over their digital currency in the name of malware demands.
According to ESET (an IT security company based in Bratislava, Slovakia), only about 1.44% of users that have been infected have willingly paid the ransom (usually around 4 BTC to decrypt documents), and even then some of the victims were subjected to “rebated” ransoms; about half the amount normally demanded.
That’s not to say, however, that those behind the malicious attacks haven’t already made quite a bit of money off their victims, no matter how short the list may be. ESET explains:
“It is hard to say who paid the full amount as opposed to the rebated (half price) amount. Because of this, we decided to use a range to quantify the profit made by the criminals. The total amount of bitcoins ranges between 760.38 BTC and 1,520.76 BTC. With the value of the bitcoin on November 29th 2014 (1 BTC valued at $384.94), it means that they swindled victims out an amount between $292,700 and $585,401.”