Cybercriminal group DD4BC, which stands for “DDoS for Bitcoin” (Distributed Denial of Service for Bitcoin) has been targeting financial institutions since the year 2014, demanding extortion in Bitcoin.
The fugitive group threatens the financial institutions that if they fail to cough up a desired number of Bitcoin then they will take down their websites.
The modus operandi of taking down a website is simple; DD4BC targets a website with traffic so heavy that the web server comes crashing down and the site goes offline. As per information analytics company Neustar, the cost of such a criminal action can go up to $ 100,000 per hour.
The targeted companies mostly give in to the group’s ransom demands, otherwise they are hit with another DDoS attack and face huge, sometimes irreparable, damage to their business and reputation.
Speaking to Bloomberg, Roland Dobbins from Arbor Networks said,
“If the organization doesn’t pay – and they shouldn’t – they’ll be hit with another DDoS attack with a larger volume and the price will go up. If they [DD4BC] perceive that the organization is taking defensive measures, the extortion payment will increase further.”
But that is not all, according to a magnificent article on Bloomberg Business, it is actually the hit on the reputation of the institution and a feeling of despair and vulnerability that hurts the most.
Till now, this cybercriminal group has hit Bitcoin mining companies, Bitcoin exchanges and also online casinos but now it is targeting banks, brokerages and automated clearing houses in Europe, Australia, and the U.S., according to Bloomberg.
According to a research by Akamai, the group has carried out close to 150 attacks, 58 percent of which have been directed at financial service companies.
However, there is no need to panic! With some extra server capacity and enhanced defense systems one can easily sail through a DDoS attack.
There are some companies willing to fight it out as well, such as the Bitcoin wallet and exchange Bitalo. This company was contacted last year to pay up a certain sum, but it instead placed a reward of 100 Bitcoin (around $25,000) on DD4BC’s digital head. In short, the fight for a safe digital environment is raging on!