The Conti Ransomware group
A reward of up to $10 million dollars is offered by the US Department of State for information leading to the identity and/or location of any individual(s) who occupy a senior leadership role in the Conti ransomware variant transnational organized criminal gang. In addition to this, the Department is offering a reward of up to $5,000,000 for information leading to the arrest and/or conviction of anybody who is conspiring to engage or attempting to participate in a ransomware attack based on the Conti ransomware variant.
Over the last two years, the Conti ransomware gang has been responsible for a large number of ransomware attacks. The Conti Ransomware version is the most expensive strain of ransomware ever reported, according to FBI estimations as of January 2022, with over 1,000 victims of attacks related to Conti ransomware and victim ransom payments reaching $150,000,000.
In one of the latest big strikes, the ransomware attack on the Government of Costa Rica in April 2022 seriously disrupted the country’s international commerce by interrupting its customs and taxation systems.
With announcing such a reward, the United States Department of State’s Transnational Organized Crime Rewards Program (TOCRP) is showing its commitment to protecting ransomware victims worldwide from cyber criminals and demonstrating their readiness to work with countries that are committed to bringing justice to ransomware victims.
TOCRP operates in cooperation with federal law enforcement colleagues, as part of a broader government effort to disrupt and destroy global organized crime rings, including those operating in the digital realm.
Following high-profile cyberattacks on Colonial Pipeline and Kaseya last year, TOCRP offered similar monetary prizes in November 2021 to locate criminal parties linked to the DarkSide and REvil malware.
Since 1986, the Drugs Rewards Program (NRP) and the TOCRP have brought more than 75 international criminals and significant narcotics traffickers to justice. There have been more than $135 million in awards handed out via these initiatives by the Department thus far.
The Conti variant is considered the “costliest strain of ransomware ever reported” and one of the most prolific ransomware cartels. A Russian transnational organized crime group named Gold Ulrick is the creator of the Conti ransomware, which, since its release, hasn’t stopped to actively target organizations all over the world while also expand its reach by incorporating TrickBot and engaging in data extortion attacks.