A Moscow court on Friday ordered the arrest of members of the REvil hacking group. The Federal Security Service (formerly the KGB) of the Russian Federation, in cooperation with the Investigative Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation, stopped the illegal activities of members of an organized criminal community in the cities of Moscow, St. Petersburg, Moscow, Leningrad and Lipetsk regions. The FSB raided 25 locations and eventually arrested 14 members of the REvil group. The FSB seized more than 426 million rubles ($5.6 million) including denominated in cryptocurrency; $600,000; 500,000 euros; computer equipment, the crypto wallets that were used to perpetrate crimes, and 20 luxury cars that were purchased with illicitly obtained money. The suspects have been all indicted.
Recall the ransomware attack on a US pipeline that causes widespread shortages of fuel and hardship. Many other attacks were also the work on ransomware.
The basis for the search activities was the appeal of the competent US authorities, who reported on the leader of the criminal community and his involvement in encroachments on the information resources of foreign high-tech companies by introducing malicious software, encrypting information and extorting money for its decryption.
The detained members were charged with committing crimes under Part 2 of Article 187 “Illegal turnover of payment funds” of the Criminal Code of Russia. As a result of joint actions of the FSB and the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia, the organized criminal community has ceased to exist, and the information infrastructure used for criminal purposes has been neutralized.
The Russian penal system has a reputation for being really brutal. Hopefully it will dissuade others from the same criminal activity.