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In a ransomware attack, a company is hit with malware that renders its data inaccessible. The attacker promises to provide a decryption key only after a payment, usually in bitcoin, is made. Demands range from $570 (for an attack against the Community of Christ Church, according to KATU news) to $3.6 million (the initial demand made to Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center, per Tech Times). According to the Los Angeles Times, the hospital ultimately paid 40 bitcoin, about $17,000, to restore normal operations in the face of patient need.

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