In a surprising development, the American Justice Department announced that it had recovered a total of 63.7 BTCs worth nearly $2.3 million of the Colonial Pipeline that it lost in recent ransomware extortion. Per available report, the figure represents a huge chunk of the amount demanded by the group.
American Justice Department further claimed that authorities could track the address using the private key of the FBI. DarkSide, a hacking group, attacked the Colonial Pipeline putting many of the critical services of the firm out of operation.
Soon after the news broke out, it triggered a new debate around cybersecurity and the use of virtual currencies for ransomware, in a bid to recover the assets, the Digital Extortion and Ransomware Task Force, which was created amidst increasing cyberattacks and ransom incidents, coordinated with other government agencies.
Colonial Pipeline Hack
Colonial Pipeline was attacked last month when the DarkSide asked for $5 million in ransom. Though the company initially stated that it wouldn’t pay the amount, it was forced to change its track after finding no solution.
Besides that, the US also recommends crypto companies not pay any ransom amount. Yet, the company decided to go ahead with it after its critical operations were halted. Meanwhile, the attacker group is believed to be based in Eastern Europe or Russia and has executed attacks previously.
On the other hand, crypto experts suggest that the hackers wrongly calculated the move as they did not expect such a harsh and prompt response from the American law enforcement agencies.
Meanwhile, some news suggests that President Biden is likely to address the ransomware issue in the upcoming G7 summit. While talking to the news reporters, President’s National Security Advisor, Jake Sullivan, stated that it remains the top priority.