US Set to Sanction Cryptocurrency Firms Involved in Ransomware
The US government is announcing new measures that seek to deter cryptocurrency businesses from getting involved in laundering and facilitating ransomware payments. The Treasury may roll out the new sanctions as early as this coming week and will reportedly target cryptocurrency exchanges and traders who enable cybercrime transactions, whether it be knowingly or not. The government will also likely issue new guidance explaining the risks for cryptocurrency businesses involved in facilitating ransomware payments. These allegedly include fines and other penalties.
The move reflects the current administrative policy taken by President Biden in prioritizing ransomware as a national security threat. Following the Colonial Pipeline attack earlier this year, the White House issued letters to CEOs urging them to take the threat of ransomware more seriously and treat it as a national security risk. Biden’s executive order on cybersecurity may also help to drive improvements that were designed to mitigate the impact of ransomware across the federal government. It also aims to make it easier for organizations across public and private sectors to share information in the wake of cybersecurity incidents.