Tox is yet another example of cyber justice that has been meted out by cyber criminals.
In this case, Tox sends a file named “hot pics” to locations that are generally visited by individuals looking for child pornography. According to the developer, Tox has infected more than 1,000 users.
The TOX ransomware includes file encryption that deploys automatically after installation, thus preventing the user from removing it from their computer. The program takes all the data on the entire computer hostage. Only when a ransom is paid does the program loosen its hold.
The malware was created by a teenage student, who developed a platform for anyone to create their version and cash in the ransom paid by victims.
The platform can be accessed without any fee. However, most of the people who generally accepted the script were newbies. They were required to distribute the program and give 30% of the cut back to Tox. While it does sound like a fantastic way to combat child pornography, security researchers state that the code lacked efficiency and complexity. Only last week, the creator finally decided to sell the code to the highest bidder.
At the time, Tox had approximately 1,000 users. While it is not known how many people succumbed to Tox, there’s no doubt that it is one of the prime examples of harmful malware actually being put to good use. However, there’s also a dark side. It could now put websites where illegal pornography is traded on guard against the dangers of malware. It may even make perverts more cautious while browsing for illegal content.
As of now, the teenage hacker “Tox” says he’s selling his “ransomware” operation because “I can’t let this thing take me over”
Read Tox’s message here.
This is the first time when a hacker has used his skills to counter Pedophiles. In the past a UK based animal porn lover was charged with a non-custodial sentence, after a ransomware infection on his computer made him confess to the police.