A coordinated strike involving Europol, Interpol and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has led to the arrest of two “prolific” ransomware operators allegedly responsible for ransom demands of up to €70 million. In addition, $1.3 million worth of cryptocurrency has been seized.
Arrested ransomware operators, crypto grab
The International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) announced on Monday:
Two prolific ransomware operators suspected of carrying out a series of attacks, demand ransoms of up to 70 million euros [$81 million]They were arrested in Ukraine.
The arrests came in the wake of “a coordinated strike between the French Gendarmerie Nationale (Genédarmerie Nationale), the Ukrainian National Police (Національна поліція України) and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), in coordination with Europol and Interpol, the European Union. The Law Enforcement Cooperation Agency (Europol) explained The arrests took place on September 28.
Authorities conducted seven property searches. They confiscated $375,000 in cash, two luxury cars worth €217,000, and $1.3 million in cryptocurrency.
Europol in detail:
The organized crime group is suspected of perpetrating a series of targeted attacks against very large industrial groups in Europe and North America from April 2020 onwards.
Europol continued: “Criminals will spread malware and steal sensitive data from these companies, before encrypting their files.” They then proceed to offer the decryption key in exchange for a ransom of several million euros, threatening to leak the stolen data on the dark web if their demands are not met.
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