An economic analysis of ransomware and its welfare consequences

Date

2020-03-04

Advisors

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

The Royal Society

Type

Article

Peer reviewed

Yes

Abstract

We present in this work an economic analysis of ransomware, a relatively new form of cyber-enabled extortion. We look at how the illegal gains of the criminals will depend on the strategies they use, examining uniform pricing and price discrimination. We also explore the welfare costs to society of such strategies. In addition, we present the results of a pilot survey which demonstrate proof of concept in evaluating the costs of ransomware attacks. We discuss at each stage whether the different strategies we analyse have been encountered already in existing malware, and the likelihood of them being implemented in the future. We hope this work will provide some useful insights for predicting how ransomware may evolve in the future.

Description

open access article

Keywords

ransomware, willingness to pay, economics

Citation

Hernandez-Castro J., Cartwright A. and Cartwright E. (2020) An economic analysis of ransomware and its welfare consequences. Royal Society Open Science.7 (3)

Rights

Research Institute

Institute for Applied Economics and Social Value (IAESV)