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FBI plans to curb ransomware hacks in crypto

FBI Warns of Increasing Number of Crypto-Related Scams
FBI Warns of Increasing Number of Crypto-Related Scams

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Three United States agencies are working together to discuss how to put an end to the increasing ransomware attacks. The development manifested after the federal agencies in the country released a joint statement seeking more input on how to stop these attacks. These agencies are the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, and the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Centre. 

The opinion-seeking movement emanated as part of the #StopRansomware campaign. The joint cybersecurity advisory campaign informed citizens of Vice Society, a type of ransomware program that encrypts information and demands fees for decryption. The agencies are preparing for an increment in attacks related to ransomware. 

The reported attacks are targeted at educational bodies. The joint statement acknowledged that school districts are vulnerable to ransomware attacks due to their limited cybersecurity defense mechanism.

Meanwhile, the FBI admitted that proactive measures are more effective in battling ransomware attacks. The FBI has called on U.S citizens to report information that will help nail down hackers. According to the FBI, Bitcoin wallet addresses, ransom notes, and IP addresses that are connected to hackers are part of the valuable information that will help aid its investigations. 

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The FBI emphasized the importance of getting wallet addresses linked to hackers. With that, the FBI would effectively track fraudulent transactions on Bitcoin’s immutable blockchain. 

Warnings against complying with ransomware hacker’s demand

About 0.15% of the transactions in 2021 on blockchains are connected with illegal activities. Though Bitcoin and other cryptos aides seamless transactions across different borders, hackers still use fiat currencies to enhance their fraudulent activities. Lately, this low figure has skyrocketed massively due to the increasing attack on the crypto space. These attacks have become a significant concern for the FBI and other concerned authorities. 

The three agencies have warned citizens of the country to desist from paying ransom to hackers. According to the joint statement, the agencies established that ransom payment doesn’t guarantee the recovery of hacked files. The agencies further encourage victims of ransomware attacks to report the situation to any local FBI office or via its communication mediums.

The rate of ransomware is becoming worrisome, thus gaining the attention of more stakeholders. In one of the most prominent attacks, UM had all of its assets frozen by a ransomware hacker in 2019. The hacker held all of UM’s emails, library resources, and research data. Then the hacker demanded about €200,000 in BTC, which UM later paid to recover the frozen assets. As the rate of ransomware hacks continues to grow, concerned agencies are working hard to curtail the menace.

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