US set to sanction crypto wallets and exchanges in ransomware crackdown

The Biden Administration is expected to begin issuing sanctions against crypto exchanges, wallets and traders used by ransomware groups to crackdown on cyberattacks.

According to Bleeping Computer, recent attacks against US interests and infrastructure has led the White House to increase its efforts to disrupt ransomware operations.

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that the US is expected next week to sanction crypto wallets and exchanges as well as individuals who aid ransomware groups in converting cryptocurrency.

With cryptocurrency a necessary part of ransomware operations, the Biden administration is hoping to disrupt this particular payment method through sanctions.

It is common for almost all ransomware operations to demand either Bitcoin or Monero for ransom payments. Following payment, ransomware gangs must then cash out the crypto into fiat money – including US dollars or local currency.

The cryptocurrency is initially transferred through mixers to make the coins less traceable and is then converted using crypto exchanges or their employees.

Bleeping Computer remarked that by sanctioning crypto exchanges known to be used by ransomware actors, the US government hopes to disrupt this economy and make it tougher for ransomware gangs to operate.

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