Paying Ransom for Cyber Crimes

Paying ransom to unlock a hacker’s lock on hard drives and the data stored there, paying protection money to “get back” stolen data, is worse than merely aiding and abetting the criminals.  It puts at risk more than just the ransom-payer. By paying this reward money, by ensuring that this particular crime, at least, pays and pays well, it put others at risk of the same crime.

Now those put at risk by these ransom payers have grown to include children.

Hackers looking to exploit sensitive information for profit are increasingly targeting the nation’s schools, where they are finding a relatively weak system to protect a valuable asset: student data.

The attackers have gained access to servers containing student names, addresses, social security numbers, birth dates, academic performance, phone numbers and medical and discipline records….

This is the payoff for rewarding hackers for their crimes: child molesting hackers moving to get in on all the paydays.

On Oct 5, a Twitter page using the name of a well-known hacker took credit for Johnston County’s hack in a tweet that read: “With the student directory from JCSD we released, any child predator can now easily acquire new targets and even plan based on grade level.”

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