The $590 million ransom payments for suspected ransomware attacks occurred in the first six months of this year, and that’s more than the $416 million ransom paid in 2020, the U.S. Treasury said Friday.
According to the Treasury, the average number of reported ransomware transactions per month in 2021 is $102.3 million. Reportedly, the most common types of ransomware used are REvil/Sodinokibi, Conti, DarkSide, Avaddon, and Phobosn.
President Joe Biden has made the government’s response to cybersecurity a top priority for the most senior levels of his government after a series of attacks this year that threaten the stability of energy and food supplies.
New guidance from the Treasury says the crypto industry is playing an increasingly important role in preventing blacklisted people from exploiting cryptocurrencies to evade sanctions. The guide also suggests cryptocurrency exchanges use geolocation tools to block access from countries under American sanctions.
Hackers use ransomware to wipe out systems that control everything from hospital bills to manufacturing. The system will be reactivated if the perpetrator has received a large payment, usually in crypto currency. (ka/rs)