To crack down on the criminal use of cryptocurrency, including for ransomware, authorities are increasingly targeting "cryptocurrency businesses that do not have the compliance controls in place necessary to mitigate the risks of illicit activity," says Ari Redbord of TRM Labs.
ISMG's global editorial team reflects on the top cybersecurity news and analysis from 2021 and looks ahead to the trends already shaping 2022. From ransomware to Log4j, here is a compilation of major news events, impacts and discussions with leading cybersecurity experts on what to expect in the new year.
A top U.S. Department of the Treasury official said financial regulators are prepared to extend existing authorities to rein in stablecoins, although Treasury officials hope instead that Congress will move on key legislation to regulate the space.
The latest edition of the ISMG Security Report features an analysis of how cybercriminals are turning to cryptomixing services to conceal the proceeds of ransomware activities from law enforcement officials. Also featured: Criminals exploit a misconfigured FBI server and the future of zero trust.
Cryptocurrency-using criminals continue to rely on services designed to launder their virtual currency to give them "clean coins" that are tougher for law enforcement to trace. Experts say such services are widely marketed on cybercrime forums, and sometimes provided directly to ransomware groups' affiliates.
Ari Redbord of TRM Labs, who has had an extensive career in law enforcement, points out that 2020 was a pivotal year for putting cybersecurity on the agenda throughout the government. He discusses securing cryptocurrecy, the blockchain and other elements of the "digital battlefield."
The U.S. Department of the Treasury has blacklisted cryptocurrency exchange Chatex, along with a network of entities the department says support it, for allegedly facilitating ransomware-related financial transactions. This action effectively bars Americans from doing business with the company.
The U.S. deputy attorney general said this week that the nation is ramping up efforts to cripple ransomware operations and other cybercrime through arrests and seizures of ransom payments. The Biden administration has called ransomware a threat to national security and an economic threat.
Following an outage of the REvil - aka Sodinokibi - ransomware operation due to coordinated law enforcement efforts involving the U.S. and foreign partners, the operators behind DarkSide ransomware have moved bitcoin worth almost $7 million to multiple new wallets, making it more difficult to track.
The U.S. Department of the Treasury unveiled additional steps to curb the illicit use of cryptocurrencies on Friday, warning enterprises not to engage with sanctioned entities exploiting the financial system - particularly to launder ransomware proceeds.
A congressional letter sent to the heads of four federal agencies expressed an urgent need for the Biden administration to continue combating ransomware. This includes a particular focus on the cryptocurrency infrastructure that is enabling these cyberattacks, four Democratic lawmakers say.
The U.S. Department of Justice said this week it will pursue government contractors that fail to report cybersecurity incidents. The department also announced the formation of a Cryptocurrency Enforcement Team to prosecute the misuse of virtual currencies.
In the latest weekly update, four editors at Information Security Media Group discuss important cybersecurity issues, including how ransomware affiliates change operators and why terrorists aren't launching massive cyberattacks.
Researchers have discovered email fraud campaigns in which unidentified threat actors are swindling victims out of bitcoin by tempting them with a substantial amount of tax-free cryptocurrency. This follows an SEC warning about fraudulent cryptocurrency schemes making the rounds