On Wednesday, Ukrainian law enforcement authorities announced the arrest of the ransomware gang that stays behind the Clop ransomware. The officials claimed that they have also hit the infrastructure used in attacks targeting victims all over the globe.
In a coordinated operation with Interpol, Korea, and the United States, the National Police of Ukraine managed to arrest six criminal actors. As per the report, they have been accused of running a double extortion scheme in which victims who refused to pay a ransom were threatened with the leak of sensitive financial, customer, or personal data stolen from them before the files were encrypted.
According to the National Police, the Clop ransomware attacks cost nearly $500 million in monetary losses, but the law enforcement has been able to shut down the infrastructure from which the Clop ransomware spreads and restrict routes for legalizing illegally obtained cryptocurrency.
During the arrest operation, the Police Officials have conducted 21 searches, resulting in the confiscation of computer equipment, luxury vehicles, and $5 million hryvnias (approximately $184,679) in cash from the residences of the arrested individuals.
On accusations of unlawful interference with the operation of computers, automated systems, computer networks, and telecommunications networks, the accused offenders may face up to eight years in jail. However, it’s still unclear if the arrested people are ransomware affiliates or core developers.
Clop’s dark web site called CL0P^-LEAKS, which is used to leak stolen data, is still up and operating as of time of this writing, indicating that the infrastructure hasn’t been taken down completely.
Since 2019, the Clop gang has been connected to a number of high-profile attacks, aimed at leading companies, educational institutions and more. The Clop arrests are the latest in a series of government-led operations conducted in recent months to stop illegal cybercriminal activity all around the world. Hundreds of criminals across 16 countries were successfully arrested as a result of another globally coordinated hacking operation aimed at the An0m app.
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