Earlier this month, a massive malware attack wreaked havoc on the internet, in particular the UK’s NHS (National Health Service), Fedex, and a ton of other places.
They had their files encrypted by the ransomware, and caused everyone to run around like chickens with the heads cut off looking for a solution that wouldn’t result in essential data being lost or private medical information being dumped online.
The man who managed to find a solution, which involved finding a domain name tied to the source code, and registering the domain name for a measly $10, and ultimately ended up preventing millions, or even billions of dollars in damage and catastrophic data loss all around the world got more than he bargained for.
Journalists started trying to doxx him, contacting his friends, offering cash in exchange for personal information including the names of his loved ones, when all he wanted was to be left alone.
In addition to himself and his friends being harassed by journalists, he also earned a $10,000 reward which he decided to donate to charity:
“I plan on holding a vote to decide which charities will get the majority of the money,” he told HackerOne. “The rest will go to buying books/resources for people looking to get into infosec who can’t afford them.”
We’ll simply refer to this internet hero as MalwareTech, out of the respect for their privacy that so many other people weren’t willing to provide. You can read more in-depth about this and other security concerns on their blog.
Let’s all hope that the next time somebody discovers the antidote to a devastating threat that this whole situation doesn’t cause them to think twice before sharing it.
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