Along with two other federal agencies, CISA, and MS-ISAC the FBI asked Americans to report any information that could help track down the location of hackers.
The advisory sought information on ransomware attacks by three federal agencies: the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency) and the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center.
The #StopRansomware campaign saw the joint cybersecurity advisory notify citizens of Vice Society about a ransomware-type program, which encrypts data and requires ransom to decrypt it.
Ransomware attacks will increase over time
According to the trio, ransomware attacks will increase in frequency, with a focus on educational institutions. They also noted that schools districts with constrained cybersecurity resources and limited cybersecurity capabilities are often the most vulnerable.
Although proactive measures are still vital in countering ransomware, the FBI requested that US citizens report any information that could help track down the location of hackers. The FBI is looking for Bitcoin ( BitcoinTC) wallet information and ransom notes. It also wants IP addresses that are linked to the attacker.
Authorities can track bitcoin transactions from wallets
Authorities can track illicit transactions on Bitcoin’s immutable Blockchain using wallet addresses without worrying about the trail becoming cold.
Although Bitcoin allows for frictionless cross-border transactions across borders, most criminals prefer to use fiat currencies to finance their illicit activities. It was also discovered that only 0.1% of blockchain activity in 2021 was related to crime. This trend has been steady year after year.
The federal agencies discourage Americans from paying ransom, as payment does not guarantee that victim files will be recovered.
Recently, the Dutch Public Prosecution Service found crypto wallets linked to a ransomware attack against Netherland’s Maastricht University.
Ransomware hackers froze all assets at UM in 2019, including research data and emails, as well as library resources. UM eventually agreed to pay EUR200,000 in Bitcoin for the hacker, currently worth around EUR500,000.