Hackers of U.S. Oil Pipeline wants ransom paid

Hackers shut down U.S. Colonial fuel pipeline supplying the East Coast
Hackers shut down U.S. Colonial fuel pipeline supplying the East Coast

Agency Report

Hackers of U.S. fuel pipeline operator said in a news release on Monday that its goal was to make money and not to create problems for society.

The ransomware attack has crippled Colonial Pipeline, a firm responsible for funnelling fuel to a huge chunk of America’s East Coast.

The group calling itself DarkSide is the prime suspect in the digital extortion attempt.

The ransomware outbreak prompted the company to shut down its network, potentially causing extraordinary disruption as gasoline deliveries dry up.

The terse news release posted to DarkSide’s website on Monday did not directly mention Colonial Pipeline but, under the heading “About the latest news,” it noted that “our goal is to make money, and not creating problems for society.”

The statement did not say how much money the hackers are seeking.

Colonial Pipeline did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the hackers’ statement.

The hackers have yet to return repeated messages to their website seeking further comment.

DarkSide’s statement said its hackers would launch checks on fellow cybercriminals “to avoid social consequences in the future.”

It added the group was “apolitical” and that observers “do not need to tie us” with any particular government.

The statement, which had several spelling and grammatical mistakes, appeared geared toward lowering the political temperature around an intrusion that is becoming one of the most disruptive digital ransom schemes reported.

The crippling of Colonial’s IT system has led to isolated sales restrictions at retail pumps and is pushing benchmark gasoline prices to a three-year high.

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