THE HACKERS behind WannaCry have cashed out more than $140,000 (£105,000) worth of bitcoins paid by victims of the ransomware bastard.
Until now, the 52.19666422 BTC that had been paid by WannaCry victims into three separate bitcoin wallets had remained untouched, but it seems the hackers behind the far-reaching attack have got their eyes on something shiny and expensive.
According to a Twitter bot that's tracking the WannaCry ransom wallets, the hackers on Thursday cashed out $70,000 in three successive withdrawals, and 5 minutes later proceeded to withdraw another $70,000.
10 minutes later, the hackers made a final withdrawal of a little over $26,000, emptying all three bitcoin accounts tied to the WannaCry ransomware.
It's probably no coincidence that the hackers waited until after the bitcoin split to cash out, as it saw them make an extra 20 per cent or so on top of the $140,000 worth of bitcoin they had extorted, Quartz reports.
"We're following the movement of funds being sent out of the WannaCry wallets," Tom Robinson, Elliptic's co-founder said.
"We believe some of these funds are being converted into Monero, a privacy-focused cryptocurrency. We continue to work with law enforcement to support their efforts in tracing ownership of these funds."
The identity of the hackers behind the attack remains unclear, but the UK's National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has pointed the finger of blame directly in the direction of North Korea and said the Lazurus Grup is behind the that whacked as many as 20 per cent of NHS trusts.
NCSC conducted its own investigation in the aftermath of the attacks, which including examining code taken from infected computers and comparing it with samples from previous attacks.
The analysis strongly pointed to Lazarus Group, the report claims, which has previously been linked to the North Korean government. µ
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