The surprising relationship between Bitcoin and ransomware is investigated in White House summit

by | Nov 2, 2022 | Technology

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Bitcoin has brought with it many benefits: accessibility, liquidity, anonymity, independence from central authority, high-return potential. 

All of which are a boon to cybercriminals, especially those working across national borders.

“When Bitcoin became more widely used, we saw a huge jump in ransomware because it was the way to move money across borders,” a spokesperson only identified as a senior administration official said in a press briefing prior to an international cybersecurity summit in Washington this week. 

“It’s a borderless threat, and we have to tackle it in a borderless way,” said the official. Particularly when it comes to illicit use of crypto, “the threat has clearly evolved.”

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To coordinate and strengthen partnerships and more effectively counter ransomware threats on critical infrastructure, the Biden administration this week brought together leaders from 36 countries and the European Union. 

“As we know, ransomware is an issue that knows no borders and affects each of the Counter Ransomware Initiative countries — our businesses, our critical infrastructure, and our citizens — and it’s only getting more challenging,” said the White House senior official. 

Sharing progress, inviting private sector

The White House launched the Counter Ransomware Initiative (CRI) last year during a virtual global summit to “rally allies and partners to counter the shared threat of ransomware,” said the senior administration official. The initiative has five working groups. 

With this year’s event, the goal was to come together to discuss what those working groups have accomplished throughout the year. 

CRI partners focused on the five working group themes and also …

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