Chainalysis, cybersecurity, doj seizes bitcoin, Netwalker, ransomware, ransomware research, seized, U.S Department of Justice (DoJ)

In collaboration with Bulgarian authorities, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) disrupted a well-known ransomware gang’s infrastructure. Law enforcement seized their servers and traced the illicit funds with the help of blockchain forensic analytics via Chainalysis.

US Authorities Seized Over $454,000 Worth of Cryptocurrencies

Per the U.S. Department of Justice’s announcement, the coordinated action took down Netwalker, a highly active ransomware group over the last year, specifically targeting the health care sector.

The U.S. authorities also indicted a Canadian national, Sebastien Vachon-Desjardins, who allegedly obtained $27.6 million as a “Netwalker affiliate.â€

The authorities seized a server that hosted their site on the dark web, where the gang redirected their victims to arrange the ransom negotiations. Moreover, the U.S. DOJ said that $454,530.19 in cryptocurrency from ransom payments were seized.

With the support of blockchain analysis, law enforcement took advantage of investigative tools of Chainalysis to trace Netwalker transactions. In fact, the blockchain firm had traced more than $46 million worth of funds in Netwalker ransoms since it first came on the scene in August 2019.

The U.S. authorities believe the ransomware gang targeted 205 victims from 27 different countries during its lifetime, including 203 in the U.S.

Speaking with news.Bitcoin.com, Brett Callow, threat analyst at malware lab Emsisoft, commented on the authorities’ action against Netwalker:

Netwalker ransomware works with an affiliate scheme, where external people could deploy the ransomware and share revenues with the gang. Chainalysis elaborates on what the blockchain analysis unveiled about the infrastructure:

The analytical firm says that there were fewer than 20 unique affiliates. Some of them rarely deployed the ransomware, while others moved on to other similar ransomware strains. That’s why a tool used by the authorities named Chainalysis Reactor traced payments received by the affiliates from other variants.

To confirm the fact that some affiliates moved to other strains, Chainalysis found out that Netwalker administrator published an advertisement on darknet forums. The admin was seeking new affiliates, as vacancies “had freed up.â€

Tracing Suspected Netwalker Affiliate

On how the authorities traced Vachon-Desjardins’ activities, Chainalysis explained:

Citing government partners, Chainalysis claims Vachon-Desjardins was involved in at least 91 attacks using Netwalker ransomware since April 2020, deploying the malware as an affiliate and receiving 80% of the ransom. The analytical firm also suspects the alleged Netwalker affiliate was involved in the deployment of other ransomware strains.

What do you think about this massive operation against the Netwalker ransomware gang? Let us know in the comments section below.

RELATED NEWS

Cyber Criminals Are Now Hiding Their Stolen Cryptos 13x Faster, Says Report

A new report unveiled a growing trend of efforts from cybercriminals hiding their stolen cryptocurrencies through different transaction flows. Crystal Blockchain pointed out that since 2019, the volume of stolen bitcoin grew significantly. Only 8% of the Funds Were Transferred to Exchanges With Verification Procedures in 2020 Per the findings, in 2020, the firm said […]

Xem chi tiết: Cyber Criminals Are Now Hiding Their Stolen Cryptos 13x Faster, Says Report

Japanese Authorities Say the Majority of People Involved in Coincheck’s 2018 Hack Are Individuals With ‘High Social Status’

More details keep appearing from the police investigation into the 2018 Coincheck hack that stole $530 million from the crypto exchange. Japanese authorities revealed that most of the individuals involved have a “high social status.†One of the Individuals Took Part in a NEM Swap Deal Is Worth $64 Million According to a report published […]

Xem chi tiết: Japanese Authorities Say the Majority of People Involved in Coincheck’s 2018 Hack Are Individuals With ‘High Social Status’

US Government Expands Charges Against North Korean Hackers- Authorities Describe Them as The ‘World’s Leading Bank Robbers’

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) unsealed new charges against the North Korean state-sponsored Lazarus Group. The hackers are allegedly responsible for stealing over $1.3 billion in cryptocurrencies and fiat during coordinated cyber-heists. North Korean Hackers Also Developed and Deployed Malicious Crypto Apps According to the announcement, law enforcement expanded charges to Park Jin Hyok, […]

Xem chi tiết: US Government Expands Charges Against North Korean Hackers- Authorities Describe Them as The ‘World’s Leading Bank Robbers’

Mirror Trading International Named Biggest Crypto Scam of the Year After Raking in $589 Million

Blockchain analysis firm, Chainalysis’ latest crime report has named Mirror Trading International (MTI) as the biggest cryptocurrency scam of 2020. Chainalysis arrived at this conclusion after an investigation found that MTI had taken in $589 million from more than 471,000 deposits. According to the report, MTI’s haul is significantly higher than that of Forsage and […]

Xem chi tiết: Mirror Trading International Named Biggest Crypto Scam of the Year After Raking in $589 Million

Belgium Energy Minister’s Twitter Account Hacked- Fake Ethereum Giveaway Advertised

The official Twitter account of Belgium’s Minister of Energy was the recent victim of a high-profile hacking incident. Tinne Van der Straeten’s profile was hacked to promote a bogus giveaway of ethereum tokens. Hacked Twitter Accounts Whoever was behind the incident changed the minister’s verified profile to “Ethereum Foundation†to make it look legit. First […]

Xem chi tiết: Belgium Energy Minister’s Twitter Account Hacked- Fake Ethereum Giveaway Advertised

Crypto Portfolio Tracking App Apologizes for Racist Messages Sent to Customers- Investigations Underway

The crypto portfolio tracker Blockfolio, owned by the exchange FTX, got its messaging system compromised, as racist notifications started to appear. Blockfolio’s users received the offensive messages with a warning that they’re about to lose all funds. Some Offensive Messages Included a URL Reportedly Linked to Pornography According to the crypto tracker and trading app, […]

Xem chi tiết: Crypto Portfolio Tracking App Apologizes for Racist Messages Sent to Customers- Investigations Underway

Bitcoin Marketplace Keepchange Suffers Data Breach — No Funds Stolen During the Incident

A bitcoin company is the latest victim of a data breach incident, where hackers managed to access customers’ full names and email addresses. Moreover, attackers sent withdrawal requests from the company customers’ accounts to addresses belonging to the hackers. Marketplace Warns Users of Phishing Attacks According to the announcement, Keepchange clarified that attackers stole part […]

Xem chi tiết: Bitcoin Marketplace Keepchange Suffers Data Breach — No Funds Stolen During the Incident

Seized Silk Road Bitcoin Worth $3 Billion Likely Linked to Disgraced US Secret Service Agent

Over $3 billion worth in bitcoin seized by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), belonging to Silk Road, are likely linked to a former U.S. Secret Service agent. The latest findings suggest that “Individual X†is, in fact, Shaun Bridges. Bridges Is Set to Be Freed in November Per recent court filings, cited by Fortune, […]

Xem chi tiết: Seized Silk Road Bitcoin Worth $3 Billion Likely Linked to Disgraced US Secret Service Agent

Expert warns Hackers are Targeting Russian Government’s IT Infrastructure to Mine Cryptocurrencies

Darknet Markets Generated $1.7 Billion in Crypto Revenue in 2020 — Set a New Record

Former UK Cyber Intelligence Official Pushes for Law Change to Stop Bitcoin Ransomware Payments

Spanish Crypto Exchange 2gether Won’t Reimburse All Stolen Funds From the 2020 Hack

DDoS Attackers Return With Massive Extortion Campaigns in the Wake of Bitcoin Prices Surging

Crypto Crime Fell Sharply to Only 0.3% of All Cryptocurrency Activity in 2020

Crypto Crime Fell Sharply to Only 0.3% of All Cryptocurrency Activity in 2020

French Programmer Sent Bitcoin Donations to Far-Right Activists Who Participated in the US Capitol Riots

Other Articles