Tuesday, June 15, 2021

US Department of Justice returns $ 2.3 million in cryptocurrency paid to Darkside ransomware

The amount is part of a ransom paid to hackers following a cyberattack on the fuel giant Colonial Pipeline

The US Department of Justice has reported the seizure of 63.7 bitcoins (approximately $ 2.3 million) that the fuel giant Colonial Pipeline paid to the ransomware DarkSide operators.

“Ransom payments are the fuel that drives the digital extortion engine. The US will use all available tools to make such attacks more costly and less profitable for criminal groups, ”announced US Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco.

Recall that on May 7 this year, the American fuel company Colonial Pipeline fell victim to a cyber-attack using ransomware. As a result of the incident, the company had to shut down some systems and halt all pipeline operations. A few hours after the attack, Colonial Pipeline decided to pay the hackers about $ 4.4 million in cryptocurrency.

Law enforcement officials tracked several bitcoin transfers and identified an email address to which approximately 63.7 bitcoins were transferred. With the help of a special “key”, the FBI specialists were able to gain access to the assets of the criminals.

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