US military has reportedly acted against ransomware groups

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America’s top cyber crusader General Paul M. Nakasone has admitted that the US military has joined the fight against ransomware groups.

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The US military has gone on the offensive against ransomware groups as US companies increasingly become targets for malware attacks, the country’s top cyberdefender acknowledged on Saturday.

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Until about nine months ago, reining in ransomware attacks was seen as the responsibility of law enforcement agencies, said General Paul M. Nakasson, head of the US Cyber ​​Command and director of the National Security Agency. the new York Times, But attacks on Colonial Pipeline and JBS beef plants are “affecting our critical infrastructure,” Nakasone said, citing key federal agencies gathering and sharing intelligence on ransomware groups.

“The first thing we have to do is to understand the adversary and their insight better than ever,” Nakasone said in an interview at the Reagan National Defense Forum, a gathering of national security officials.

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Nakasone did not describe the action taken or identify the target groups, but said one goal of the action is to “inflict costs” on the ransomware groups.

“Before, during and after, we have acted with many elements of our government and we have incurred costs,” Nakasone said. “It’s an important piece that we should always take care of.”

The increased activity follows a string of cyberattacks on the federal government and private companies, reigniting concerns about critical infrastructure vulnerabilities.

A serious ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline forced to shut down a major US petroleum pipeline In May, widespread gas shortages along the East Coast caused concern. A month later, JBS USA, one of the largest meat producers in the US, suffered a ransomware attack that temporarily shut down processing plants.

In ransomware schemes such as those used on Colonial, attackers use codes to take control of a computer system and then demand money to unlock it. For example, in 2017 the worldwide WannaCry ransomware attacks shut down the computer systems of hospitals, banks and phone companies. City governments in the US have also been affected by ransomware attacks.

President Joe Biden signed an executive order in May with the aim of improving US cybersecurity protections, adding that the attack on the Colonial Pipeline highlighted the need to do more to protect critical infrastructure. The order outlined a number of steps aimed at enhancing the nation’s cyber security, including calling for the removal of contractual barriers to reporting breaches to the federal agency, reporting serious cyberattacks within three days and providing critical investigations. Establishment of Cyber ​​Security Review Board for Events.

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