WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) - Experts say one of the most prolific ransomware groups in the world appears to be behind the recent cyberattack against the City of Wichita. Tuesday, the US Department of Justice put up a $10 million reward for help finding the man responsible.

"Last year, more than a billion dollars is known to be paid in ransoms, just to give you some sense of the scale," said Emsisoft cybersecurity expert Brett Callow.

Callow spends most of his days studying cyber threats around the world. Tuesday, he says he noticed Wichita on a list that no city wants to be on.

"LockBit, like most other ransomware groups, has a site on the dark web where they list victims, or at least the victims who don't pay, and they publish whatever data they've stolen. Wichita has been added to LockBit's site," said Callow.

Earlier this week, the City of Wichita announced a big cyber attack that shut down many of its services. Now, Callow says LockBit is demanding an undisclosed amount of money from the city by May 15th.

"They are trying to force the city into paying. If the city pays, they will receive a pinky promise that the stolen data will be destroyed. If they don't pay, the data gets posted online," said Callow.

Tuesday, after years of chasing him, the US Department of Justice revealed who it believes created LockBit, the cybercriminal group Callow says appears to be behind the Wichita attack.

"Today, we are announcing that Dimitry Khoroshev, a Russian national, is charged in a 26-count indictment with committing and conspiring to commit LockBit attacks. Khoroshev was the creator, developer, and administrator of the LockBit ransomware group," said Nicole Argentieri with the US Department of Justice.

The DOJ says it's offering a $10 million reward for information that leads to Khoroshev's arrest.

However, even if Khoroshev gets caught, Callow says that ransomware isn't going anywhere. In his opinion, places like Wichita that are victimized by cybercrimes should stop paying the criminals.

"There is too much money involved for this problem to go away quickly and easily. Personally, I think government needs to look at banning ransom payments. I think that is the only solution," Callow explained.

KAKE News contacted the city about this development, but it says it can't share any additional information at this time.