“The Venus group has problems getting paid,” Holden said. “They are targeting a lot of U.S. companies, but nobody wants to pay them.”
Which might explain why their latest scheme centers on trying to frame executives at public companies for insider trading charges. Venus indicated it recently had success with a method that involves carefully editing one or more email inbox files at a victim firm — to insert messages discussing plans to trade large volumes of the company’s stock based on non-public information.
“We imitate correspondence of the [CEO] with a certain insider who shares financial reports of his companies through which your victim allegedly trades in the stock market, which naturally is a criminal offense and — according to US federal laws [includes the possibility of up to] 20 years in prison,” one Venus member wrote to an underling.
Source: New Ransom Payment Schemes Target Executives, Telemedicine – Krebs on Security