U.S. Recovers Most Colonial Pipeline Ransom Paid to DarkSide: DOJ

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Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “U.S. Recovers Most Colonial Pipeline Ransom Paid to DarkSide: DOJ” – below is their description.

The U.S. recovered almost all the Bitcoin ransom paid to the perpetrators of the cyber attack on Colonial Pipeline Co. last month in a sign that law enforcement is capable of pursuing online criminals even when they operate outside the nation’s borders.

U.S. officials said Monday that they captured about 63.7 Bitcoin traced to recipients of a 75-bitcoin ransom paid by Colonial soon after the May 8 attack that resulted in a shutdown of the nation’s largest gas pipeline, resulting in fuel shortages across the east coast just ahead of the Memorial Day weekend.

Because of the declining value of Bitcoin since the ransom was paid, the U.S. seizure in late May amounted to $2.3 million, just over half the $4.4 million paid weeks earlier after the ransom was demanded.

Deputy FBI Director Paul Abbate said at a Justice Department briefing announcing the seizure that law enforcement identified a virtual wallet used in the ransom payment and then recovered the funds. He said investigators found more than 90 companies victimized by DarkSide, a Russia-linked cybercrime group blamed in the pipeline hack.

“Today we turned the tables on DarkSide,” Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco said, as she called on companies to invest more to protect their critical infrastructure and intellectual property. “DarkSide and its affiliates have been digitally stalking U.S. companies for the better part of last year.”

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