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2 min read

ALPHV Goes Dark After Ransomware Attack

Mar 7, 2024 9:24:32 AM

Ransomware gang ALPHV, also known as BlackCat, went dark after attacking Change Healthcare with ransomware. They asked for a $22 million payment from the healthcare organization, and then posted a seemingly fake FBI seizure notification on their website. Fishy, right? GroupSense CEO Kurtis Minder was featured in an article on CyberScoop talking about the high ransom and its impact on organizations trying to get operational after an attack. Check out the excerpt below or read the full article here.

If confirmed, the $22 million ransom payment could encourage further attacks on the health care sector. “We saw this in the case of the Conti chat logs where they identified certain sectors of being more likely to pay,” Kurtis Minder, the co-founder and CEO of GroupSense and a longtime ransomware negotiator, told CyberScoop in an online chat, referring to leaked internal documents and chats from the Conti ransomware gang that documented how they would target industries with a history of paying ransoms.

But Minder said he was sympathetic toward executives who chose to pay ransoms. “In many cases if they don’t pay / pay quickly they go out of business or people are harmed.”

Amir Sadon, the director of incident response research with Sygnia, told CyberScoop that in this case it’s not yet clear what happened between the group and its affiliates, what law enforcement’s role was, or whether the group is actually shutting down.

Given the uncertainties, Change Healthcare may receive the short-term relief of having its data decrypted, but that doesn’t mean the threat is over.

“In most cases, once you pay the ransom, you will have some sort of guarantee that the group who attacked you will keep their part of the deal, but obviously you can never be sure when you are dealing with criminals,” said Sadon, who published an analysis Tuesday of a 2023 Sygnia incident response engagement dealing with an ALPHV/BlackCat attack.


Topics: News Ransomware

Written by Editorial Team