Interpol calls for police, industry unity against possible ‘ransomware pandemic’

Interpol has urged police agencies and industry partners to unite to prevent a possible ransomware pandemic from taking hold.

According to Bleeping Computer, Interpol secretary general Jürgen Stock has claimed the best tactic to disrupt a seemingly never-ending stream of ransomware attacks is to adopt the same international collaboration strategy that is used when fighting terrorism and organised crime.

Stock said, “Despite the severity of their crimes, ransomware criminals are continuously adapting their tactics, operating free of borders and with near impunity.

“Much like the pandemic it exploits, ransomware is evolving into different variants, delivering high financial profits to criminals.

“Ransomware has become too large of a threat for any entity or sector to address alone; the magnitude of this challenge urgently demands united global action which Interpol can uniquely facilitate as a neutral and trusted global partner.”

This is the most recent move by Interpol to tackle the issues around cybersecurity and financial crime, following the recent Interpol-backed Operation HAECHI-I, which led to the interception of $83m belonging to online financial crime victims.

Late last year, Interpol also led Operation Falcon – an investigation of an attack which included three members of a business email compromise group that had a victim count of around 50,000 organisations.

Ransomware has been one of the biggest challenges for the US this year. Recently, an attack by the REvil ransomware group on US IT provider Kaseya impacted over 1,000 businesses – making it one of the biggest cyberattacks in history.

US White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki recently warned the Russian government that the US will take action against cybercriminal groups if the Russian government fails to do so.

In other news, US Attorney General Merrick Garland previously said the country’s private industry needs to enact better safeguards to avoid consequences in the event of a cyberattack.

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