The 22-year-old security expert who helped to shut down the mass cyber attack which brought the NHS and computers across the globe into chaos, is donating his reward to charity.
The selfless Marcus Hutchins from Devon was given $10,000 (£7,800) as a ‘bounty’ by a group that rewards ‘ethical hackers’ for finding software flaws, HackerOne.
About 200,000 computers across the globe and Britain’s health service were halted by WannaCry ransomware which locked devices and demanded $300 in internet currency Bitcoin to unlock them.
By education I mean I plan to purchase infosec based book to give to students who cannot afford them themsleves.
— MalwareTech (@MalwareTechBlog) May 15, 2017
Marcus goes by the name Malware Tech on Twitter, and wrote how he would be splitting the money ‘between to-be-decided charities and education’ in form of purchasing ‘infosec based book to give to students who cannot afford them themselves’.
Speaking to the Telegraph, Marcus said:
They got in touch to offer the bounty, which I decided to claim and donate to multiple charities, as well as save a bit for helping people looking to get into security have access to educational resources.
The IT worker was able able to neutralise the threat from WannaCry by finding a website address within the code that acted as a ‘killswitch’.
Registering this domain stopped the attack spreading and potentially saved thousands of computers.
Here is the message that showed up on many people’s screens…
The attack took place on Friday night, and as of Tuesday morning, the bitcoin wallet associated with the perpetrators had collected over £50,000.
Marcus was not interested in receiving the bounty money for himself, nor the attention he has had since, and he plans to hold a vote on which charities should receive the money.
This guy saved our NHS and donated thousands to charity in one day. Independent electoral candidate anyone?