In order to protect themselves from cyber criminals known as “ransomware extortionists”, companies in the U.K have been increasing their positions in Bitcoin. This sudden interest in the cryptocurrency could have contributed to its recent rallies.
This was what Citrix Systems (NASDAQ:$CTXS) CEO, Kirill Tatarinov said on Monday in response to TheStreet’s founder, Jim Cramer’s question at a panel discussing cybersecurity concerns at The Deal’s 2017 corporate governance conference.
The issue at hand here are the ransomware attacks, and how various companies deal with such difficult situations. Ransomware is the act of cyber criminals hacking into a company sensitive information, and then demanding payment in Bitcoins to not destroy company data or networks. The WannaCry outbreak was such a case that cornered many companies, possibly fuelling the surge in Bitcoin value. It’s good to note that cyber criminals prefer payment in Bitcoins due to the untraceable and anonymous aspect of the currency.
“We’ve seen people pay up after ransomware attacks,” said Tatarinov in an interview. “We’ve seen people who are proactively bulking up on bitcoin anticipating those attacks. We’ve seen companies proactively, we saw a couple examples in the U.K., where companies are proactively building up their Bitcoin to excesses so they can pay up. This is happening.”
With over 400,000 companies, the twenty-eight-year old company that is Citrix Systems is a cloud service that provides secure digital workspaces, much like a very secure google drive, allowing users to securely access their work information from any device.
The Ransomware attacks that made its rounds last month was supposedly the results of a weakness in the Windows operating system that was allegedly discovered by the U.S. National Security Agency. The information of the Windows weakness was posted by a group known as the “Shadow Brokers”.
As such, with fear of a WannaCry repeat driving purchases by various U.K firms, consistent stockpiling may have something to do with Bitcoin’s surge in value from $1,692 on May 12, to its peaks of $2785 in June.
Although the value of Bitcoin has thought to have been derived from pure speculation, the reality that firms are stockpiling Bitcoin in order to pay off cyber criminals
has suggested a legion of buyers that use Bitcoin for practical purposes.
“Now I know why bitcoin went up so much,” – Jim Cramer, Founder of TheStreet
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