Biden considers task force to target colonial pipeline hijackers, tells Russia to act as return from operations – fr

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Biden considers task force to target colonial pipeline hijackers, tells Russia to act as return from operations – fr


After a ransomware attack on the colonial pipeline wreaked havoc on Americans as gas supplies dried up on parts of the East Coast, the Biden administration is targeting hackers with a new task force and urging Russia to act – just as operations resume. To normal.

“We have been in direct communication with Moscow on the imperative for the countries responsible to take decisive action against these ransomware networks,” Biden said Thursday.

THE COLONIAL PIPELINE TO RETURN ONLINE IN THE EVENT OF A GAS SHORTAGE FOLLOWING CYBERATTACK

He clarified that the United States does not believe that the attack was coordinated by the Russian government, “but we have good reason to believe that the criminals who carried out the attack live in Russia”.

Meanwhile, the Justice Department is moving forward with measures, according to Biden, designed to “disrupt their ability to function” – including a new task force recently created and dedicated to prosecuting ransomware hackers.

According to the Wall Street Journal, it will increase training and allocate more resources to identifying hackers while improving intelligence sharing and “the links between criminal actors and nation states.”

The force will also target the ecosystem behind these criminals, with lawsuits, disruption and restriction services like forums that advertise their services, the Journal reported.

It will remain to be seen how effective these efforts will be. In the past, hackers from foreign countries who attacked US targets have not been formally charged by the DOJ for years – and even then, they are rarely brought to justice because they are located in countries that are American geopolitical enemies like China and North Korea. and Russia.

The ransomware group found responsible, DarkSide, said in a post on Friday that its web servers had been seized, the cryptocurrency had been drained from his account, and it was shutting down operations. He blamed law enforcement as well as “pressure from the United States”

LA MAISON BLANCHE DETAILS THE PIPELINE’S “GLOBAL” COLONIAL RESPONSE

DarkSide said it will release decryption tools for companies that have yet to pay a ransom in response to the groups’ demands. The website operated by DarkSide ceased operations on Thursday. Several outlets reported that pipeline officials paid hackers nearly $ 5 million in cryptocurrency.

Biden also used his speech to push for guarantees for infrastructure more broadly. This week, he signed an executive order aimed at improving cybersecurity in the United States – with agencies demanding closer collaboration with the private sector on these issues.

Meanwhile, Colonial Pipeline announced that operations had returned to normal.

“Our team members across the pipeline worked safely and relentlessly around the clock to keep our lines operational, and we are grateful for their dedication and professionalism during these extraordinary times,” he announced, while thanking the White House and other governments. agencies for their help.

The crisis had been an early headache for the Biden administration, which has faced a number of recent blows, including a bad jobs report and an ongoing southern border crisis.

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Republicans pointed to the end of the Keystone XL pipeline administration and said it was a sign the United States needed more pipelines, not less.

But Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg disputed that on Friday.

“It’s really apples and oranges when we talk about the consequences of a cyberattack on one pipeline compared to the idea of ​​introducing another, which the president kept his promise that he did not think that it was good policy and he acted to keep his promise. when he took office, ”he told the Washington Post.

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