DarkSide Hackers Reportedly Closing Down After Retaliation Routs Their Infrastructure

Hacker, Silhouette, Hack, Anonymous, Anonymity

The hacker group responsible for the ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline that caused fuel shortages in the Southeast US appears to be shutting down after all its recent success, according to WSJ

The operator of the ransomware group Darkside, believed to originate in Eastern Europe or Russia, has been unable to access its computer systems to conduct cyber attacks. Associates close to the hacking group said it would disband, citing international pressure from the US, said security research firm FireEye. 

The DARKSIDE announcement stated that they lost access to their infrastructure, including their blog, payment, and CDN servers and would be closing their service. Decrypters would also be provided for companies who have not paid, possibly to their affiliates to distribute. (2/3)

— FireEye (@FireEye) May 14, 2021

The post cited law enforcement pressure and pressure from the United States for this decision. @Mandiant has not independently validated these claims and there is some speculation by other actors that this could be an exit scam. (3/3)

— FireEye (@FireEye) May 14, 2021

Recorded Future threat intelligence analyst Dmitry Smilyanets said DarkSide has lost control of its servers and lost some money it made through ransom payments. 

"A few hours ago, we lost access to the public part of our infrastructure, namely: Blog. Payment server. DOS servers," Darksupp, the operator of the Darkside ransomware, said.

Now, these servers are unavailable via SSH, and the hosting panels are blocked."

Darksupp also reported cryptocurrency funds were withdrawn from the payment server and would be split between itself and its associates.

On Thursday, President Joe Biden announced his administration had been "in direct communication with Moscow about the imperative for responsible countries to take decisive action against these ransomware networks" and would "pursue a measure to disrupt their ability to operate."

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