Russia: The REvil Ransomware Gang was Arrested in Russia

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Image source, FSB
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Video footage from the arrests has been released by the FSB

Russian authorities claim they have arrested several members of the ransomware group REvil.

The United States had offered a reward of up to $10m (£7.3m) for information leading to the gang members, following ransomware attacks.

Russia’s intelligence service FSB declared that the group has “ceased being alive”.

However, there is no indication that Russian members of this gang would be extradited the United States.

Following being given information by the US, the agency claimed that they had taken the necessary steps to protect the REvil gang.

Russian state media Tass reports that REvil created malicious software and orchestrated the theft from bank accounts foreigners.

The FSB said it had seized more than 426 million rubles (£4m), including about £440,000 worth of crypto-currency.

The police also seize more than 20 luxury cars that had been bought with proceeds from crime.

In a statement, the FSB stated that the organised criminal group had been eliminated and that the infrastructure for criminal activities was now neutralized.

Russia announced its decision during an ongoing standoff between America and Russia.

Moscow wants Western promises, including the promise that Nato would not be expanded further. It also has its forces close to the Ukraine border.

Finally, some action

This arrest is a significant moment in cybercrime and cyber relations between Russia and the US.

Russia denies accusations for years that Russian ransomware hackers have safe harbor in Russia to attack Western targets.

Last summer’s Geneva Summit saw President Putin of Russia and President Biden from the United States agree to start discussions on how to fight ransomware. However, even experts were skeptical that the talks would bear any fruit.

It was a surprise that the Russian authorities arrested the REvil gang in Russia.

Even though REvil has been disbanded since September 2013, it was one the most active ransomware gangs. This arrest is a big message for Russian cyber-crime teams: The party’s over.

This is the first cyber-crime joint operation between the US and Russia in many years.

This could signal a warming of relationships, something that is being celebrated widely in cyber-security.

Source: BBC.com

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