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U.S. Government Makes Fighting Cybercrime Top Priority

FinTelegram reported that in fighting cybercrime, the U.S. Justice Department will make a strategic change! It will focus more on preventing further harm to victims, even if it means tipping off suspects and jeopardizing arrests, U.S. Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco explained. Law enforcement must keep pace with the cybercriminals who exploit innovations as fast as the marketplace produces them. Prosecutors and law enforcement are targeting dozens of ransomware groups estimated to have caused billions of dollars in damage to victims.

Cybercriminals received more than $1.2 billion in ransom payments in 2020 and 2021 combined, according to cryptocurrency-tracking firm Chainalysis. Monaco said that ransomware and other digital extortion “only work if the bad guys get paid, which means we have to bust their business model,” Monaco said.

She said the department needed to apply the “same thinking” that enabled thwarting terrorist attacks to blunt the impact of damaging hacking incidents, such as ransomware. Prosecutors, agents, and analysts will weigh whether to take disruptive action against cyber threats at each stage of a cyber investigation, even if it alerts cybercriminals and thus prevents possible arrests, Monaco said at the Munich Cyber Security Conference.

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