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Marcus Hutchins
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Computer Tech
    (circa 1994- )
    Born in United Kingdom
    British cybersecurity researcher
    Works for Kryptos Logic, a Los Angeles-based cyber-intelligence company
    Credited with stopping the WannaCry ransomware attack (May 12-14, 2017)
    Ransomware is malicious software that encrypts data on a computer, then demands a payment for decryption
    WannaCry infected over 230,000 computers in 150 countries
    WannaCry asked for $300 in Bitcoins for decryption
    $33,300 had been paid by May 14
    His technique – registering a garbled domain name within the malware – triggered a killswitch accidentally: ‘I picked it up not knowing what it did at the time.’
    He first got interested in computer security by trying to get around the controls on computers at school that limited browsing to educational sites.
    He said about school, ‘I spent most of my time avoiding lessons and learning about computers instead.’
    He admitted that living with his parents is ‘so stereotypical.’
    He conceded that the hackers behind WannaCry will probably fix the killswitch and launch a new attack: ‘There is a good chance I might not be able to shut down the next one.’
    He is a self-taught coder.
    He got a computing job out of high school without going to college.
    During the three days of dealing with WannaCry, he slept only three hours and left his room just once, for food.
    He stopped a global malware attack by registering a domain for $10.69.
    Andrew Mabbitt, co-founder of Fidus Information Security, called him ‘one of the most intelligent and talented people I know.’

Credit: C. Fishel

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