- A former Canadian Government employee was extradited to the US to face charges for participating in the Netwalker ransomware to take out millions of dollars from the victims.
- Netwalker ransomware has targeted a lot of victims globally, mainly targeting the health sector amidst Covid 19 situation, taking advantage of the worldwide crisis.
- These instances and other ransomware attacks have shoved the crypto industry in the limelight in the broad ransomware industry.
Cryptocurrencies worth around $28 million are seized in connection to a former Canadian Government employee Sebastien Vachon-Desjardins who is handed over to the United States on charges regarding NetWalker ransomware.
The Department of Justice (DoJ), the accused, is charged with conspiracy to commit computer fraud with wire fraud. Intentional damage to a protected computer and transmitting a demand related to damaging a protected computer that came out from his alleged participation in the sophisticated form of ransomware, Netwalker. He participated in the ransomware to commit several cybercrimes in the year 2020.
Netwalker ransomware has targeted many victims globally, including companies, hospitals, law enforcement, municipalities, school districts, colleges, universities, emergency services. These attacks were particularly targeted on the health sector in the wake of Covid 19, taking advantage of the worldwide crisis.
Although Vachon-Desjardins’ victims were not identified in the indictment, it’s not specified as to how much he extorted from the victims. Still, a search of his home in Quebec by Canadian officers seized 719 Bitcoins.
This allegation cited by the DoJ further highlighted that the United States intends to forfeit $27 million out of the $28 million seized, allegedly traceable to proceeds of the offenses.
According to Attorney General Kennel A. Polite Jr., as symbolized by the seizure of the cryptocurrency by their Canadian Partners, they would use all legally available avenues to go for seizure and forfeiture of the alleged proceeds of ransomware, whether located abroad or domestically.
In September 2020, Netwalker ransomware hackers were identified by law enforcement as the actors behind the Argentinas shutdown of international borders. The attackers demanded requests for $4million worth of Bitcoin back then.
During the same month, the attackers demanded for around $8 million worth of Bitcoin for Pakistan’s largest power producer to track its own data proceeding a cyber attack.
These instances and other ransomware attacks often put the asset class at skepticism and have shoved the crypto industry in the limelight in the vast ransomware industry.
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