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On Locky Ransomware, Al Capone and Brexit

MacRae, John and Franqueira, Virginia N.L. (2018) On Locky Ransomware, Al Capone and Brexit. In: Digital Forensics and Cyber Crime 9th International Conference. Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications . Springer, Cham, Switzerland, pp. 33-45. ISBN 978-3-319-73696-9. E-ISBN 978-3-319-73697-6. (doi:10.1007/978-3-319-73697-6_3) (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:77176)

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The highly crafted lines of code which constitute the Locky cryptolocker ransomware are there to see in plain text in an infected machine. Yet, this forensic evidence does not lead investigators to the identity of the extortionists nor to the destination of the ransom payments. Perpetrators of this ransomware remain unknown and unchallenged and so the ransomware cyber crimewave gathers pace. This paper examines what Locky is, how it works, and the mechanics of this malware to understand how ransom payments are made. The financial impact of Locky is found to be substantial. The paper describes methods for “following the money” to assess how effectively such a digital forensic trail can assist ransomware investigators. The legal instruments that are being established by the authorities as they attempt to shut down ransomware attacks and secure prosecutions are evaluated. The technical difficulty of following the money coupled with a lack of registration and disclosure legislation mean that investigators of this cybercrime are struggling to secure prosecutions and halt Locky.

Item Type: Book section
DOI/Identification number: 10.1007/978-3-319-73697-6_3
Uncontrolled keywords: Locky, Ransomware, Cryptolocker, Bitcoin, Brexit, Digital forensics, Money laundering.
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Computing, Engineering and Mathematical Sciences > School of Computing
Depositing User: Virginia Franqueira
Date Deposited: 15 Oct 2019 17:16 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2021 14:08 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Franqueira, Virginia N.L.:
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