Suex To Be Punished For It’s Alleged Role in Ransomware Transactions

The United States Department of the Treasury intends to punish cryptocurrency exchanges that aid in ransomware attacks. According to reports, Suex, a Czech Republic-based trading platform, would be the first such company.

Suex to Face Punishment

Wally Adeyemo, Deputy Treasury Secretary, claimed that Suex was involved in facilitating transactions involving “illicit proceeds of at least eight ransomware variations.” He also stated that 40% of the known transactions history of the exchange is tied to illegal actors.

Adeyemo stated that Suex was sanctioned for its role in laundering ransoms to cyberattacks. This would be the Office of Foreign Assets Control’s first action against a cryptocurrency trading site. He stated that these types of exchanges are crucial to attackers’ ability extract profit.

Suex will no longer be allowed to do business with US entities following the latest development. Americans are generally prohibited from doing business with sanctioned companies.

The US Treasury Department announced new guidelines on how victims and businesses affected by ransomware attacks should report them and “fully cooperate” with law enforcement. It also stated that the US government opposes paying ransomware or extortion demands.

Anne Neuberger, Deputy National Security Advisor, compared entities that are protected against cybercrime with drivers and those who buy insurance for their homes.

“It incentivizes us to drive more safely. You get a number of moving violations, your insurance goes up. Get into accidents, it goes up. Similarly, when you look at our home insurance, in order to get home insurance you have to have a smoke detector or have an alarm system.”

Cryptocurrency to Battle Ransomware Attacks

Cyberattacks are a growing problem in America. The US Treasury Department estimates that ransomware payments amounted to more than $400m in 2020, more than four times the amount of 2019.

JBS USA Holdings, one of the world’s largest meat producers, was attacked by REvil in June. They demanded $11 million in bitcoin ransom. After the gang broke into its online security and had locked important information, the company agreed to pay the ransom.

The Biden administration began discussing a different strategy to combat similar attacks, which involved tracing the digital assets of hackers. Neuberger confirmed that the White House had established a ransomware taskforce. Its mission was to stop malicious operations, trace and confront the use of cryptocurrency in attacks and prevent other countries harboring hackers.