United States government task force officials have seized more than $2 million in crypto used for ransom following an attack on the colonial pipeline system.
At a press conference on Monday, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco said that the task force “found and recaptured” millions of dollars worth of bitcoin (B T c) associated with Russia-based Darkside Hackers, most of the fund’s $4.4 million originally paid off. The Justice Department later clarified that officials found $2.3 million in crypto.
Monaco said the action was the first major operation in the task force’s mission to investigate, intercept and prosecute ransomware attacks:
“Today, we turned the tables on the darkside […] After the entire ecosystem that promotes ransomware and digital extortion attacks, including criminal proceeds in the form of digital currency, we will continue to use all of our tools and all of our resources to increase the cost and consequences of ransomware attacks.
of the darkside Attack on major pipeline last month Fuel shortages have been a problem for many people in the United States. Monaco said the company immediately informed the authorities of the problem and the ransom demand, prompting the involvement of the task force.
At the same press conference, FBI Deputy Associate Director Paul Abbett said that authorities confiscated funds from a BTC wallet used to pay the ransom for the cyberattack. However, the method used to recover the crypto is unclear at the time of publication. a CNN report said That officials could have identified Darkside as those responsible and used their network to trace the funds shortly after the attack, but this method has had mixed success with ransomware groups.