US authorities are offering $10 million for informative data on nation-state cyber-attacks
US authorities are offering as much as $10 million in cryptocurrency for world market onion information ultimately causing the identification of state-sponsored cyber-attackers.
Beneath the scheme, which occurs under the Department of State's Rewards for Justice (RFJ) program, payouts is likely to be awarded for the identity or location of anybody who, "while acting at the direction or under the control of a foreign government, participates in malicious cyber activities against US critical infrastructure in violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA).
A media release states that violations include threats made during ransomware attacks, unauthorized use of a protected computer with intention to steal sensitive data, and intentionally causing damage without authorization to a protected computer.
This program has setup a reporting channel accessible on the dark web to help protect the safety and security of potential sources.
"Reward payments may include payments in cryptocurrency," said the Department of State.
Additional information on how to access the Tor-based reporting channel is found in the release.
In the pipeline
The offer of a reward comes because the US continues to experience cyber-attacks against critical infrastructure which have caused chaos across the nation.
In May in 2020, a ransomware attack on gas supplier Colonial Pipeline take off services to multiple states on the east coast.
Attackers leveraging DarkSide malware demanded $4.3 million in bitcoin – a sum which was reportedly paid out by the company.
Security professionals previously told The Daily Swig that in paying ransoms, organizations risk perpetuating a "feedback loop of malicious activity" that "allows the groups to accomplish a better degree of sophistication in their next attacks, whether that be via training, new tooling, purchasing credentials, or recruitment.