Earlier today, at the Black Hat USA security conference in Las Vegas, U.K.-based security vendor Sophos Ltd. published a new white paper about an insidiously slick and effective “ransomware-as-a-service” (RaaS) kit named Philadelphia. Here’s an inside look at that underworld product offering and preview of the threat landscape ahead based on a recent conversation with Dan Schiappa, senior vice president and general manager of the end user and network security group at Sophos.
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Once upon a time, planning and executing a ransomware attack took skill and determination. In the age of RaaS kits like Philadelphia, it’s about as easy as ordering a new microwave on Amazon.
Created by a self-described “anti-security vendor” named The Rainmaker Labs and hosted on the “dark web,” Philadelphia is a complete ransomware-in-a-box solution with a front-end ordering interface (pictured left) and back-end management portal (pictured right) as intuitive as anything you’ll find on the legitimate cloud. At $389 for an unlimited use subscription, moreover, it’s affordable as well.
In fact, Philadelphia is so inexpensive and user-friendly that it enables pretty much anyone with a little evil in their heart and money in their pocket to get in the ransomware game within a matter of minutes, even if they’re not the slightest bit technical.
“It’s kind of a one-stop shop for running a ransomware business,” Schiappa says. “It’s a game changer as far as the scale of what we’re going to see coming very soon.”
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