The US Department of Justice (DOJ) is launching new initiatives focused on cybercriminals that "flourish" with the help of cryptocurrencies. According to Reuters, the regulator wants to combat bad actors with the National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Team.
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Moreover, the DOJ launched a new civil cyber fraud initiative, which will "use civil enforcement tools to pursue companies, those who are government contractors, who receive federal funds, when they fail to follow recommended cybersecurity standards."
"For too long, companies have chosen silence under the mistaken belief that its less risky to hide a breach than to bring it forward and report it. That changes today," said US Deputy Attorney General, Lisa Monaco.
The move comes after New Cooperative, an alliance of farmers which sells corn and soy products, faced a ransomware attack from a Russian cybercrime group BlackMatter. The cybercriminals threatened to release New Cooperative's proprietary business data (a terabyte of the cooperative's data, including the source code to its soil-mapping technology) if it fails to pay $5.9 million in cryptocurrencies by Sept. 25. It remains unclear if New Cooperative paid the ransom.
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