Ransomware

FinTech Startup Says Law Enforcement Is Ramping Up Ransomware Arrests

Chainalysis has stated that ransomware arrests will soon take place targeting cyber criminals behind ransomware attacks.

Rise of Ransomware Attacks

Over the past six months, ransomware attacks have become an issue to government, business and healthcare organizations.

In January, CCN reported that three banks and a pharmaceutical company in India had been targeted by a ransomware scheme with the ransom demand in bitcoins.

Three Greek banks were reported hacked last November with the hackers demanding their ransom be paid in bitcoins. While the individuals in question were unable to gain access to confidential client data, they did manage to block the banks activities online for a few hours.

According to research conducted by an Osterman Research survey, 54 percent of the businesses questioned stated that they had come under ransomware attack over the last 12 months. Of the 540 companies surveyed the most targeted included the finance and healthcare industries.

Law Enforcement Are Cracking down on Ransomware

According to Computer Weekly, Chainalysis has started selling its bitcoin-tracing technology to law enforcement agencies in the U.S., Europe, and Asia.

Michael Gronager, CEO and co-founder of Chainalysis said:

Expect to see some arrests soon as law enforcement agencies wrap up their investigations into several ransomware operations.

He stated that the ransomware industry is estimated to be worth over $100 billion a year, but it is hoped that with the use of Chainalysis technology it will reduce that amount as law enforcement arrest the cyber criminals.

What is Chainalysis?

Based in New York, Chainalysis is a company that utilizes software that enables it to protect the integrity of digital assets. It has more than $10 billion worth of bitcoin transactions checked on behalf of its customers by using tools that respect user privacy, but prevent abuse of the financial system.

Gronager added:

Bitcoin transactions used to be anonymous, but our software is capable of linking the source and recipient, so, in effect, bitcoin has become less anonymous than cash.

Finding the Bitfinex Hackers

According to Gronager, the Bitfinex hack, which took place earlier this month and saw the theft of $65 million worth of users’ bitcoins was a mistake by the hackers.

He said:

Whoever took those bitcoins has a bit of a problem because the minute they use them, we will be able to trace them. It is a bit like sitting on a pile of marked banknotes.

Featured image from Shutterstock.