According to the researchers, a massive quantity of crypto-currency-based money laundering occurs through Russian crypto-companies. Russia has refuted allegations that it is a haven for cybercriminals. Chainalysis, which conducted the investigation, stated that it was able to track the flow of money to and from recognised hacking organisations’ digital wallets using public blockchain transaction logs. Analysts exhibited certain features that have been displayed by the Russian hacking groups, such as how their ransomware algorithm is built to stop it from harming files if it identifies the victim’s computers are situated in Russia or a CIS country.

Evil Corp receives 9.9% of all known ransomware money, although the US has sanctioned and indicted the group, which is operating in Russia with seeming impunity. One of the suspected executives of Evil Corp, Igor Turashev, operates multiple enterprises out of Moscow City’s Federation Tower. The tower is one of Russia’s most elite destinations, with flats selling for millions of dollars. Hackers utilised many crypto-currency organisations situated in the tower to launder illicit payments, transforming crypto-currency from digital wallet addresses to normal money. These groups operate in Russian on Russian-speaking websites.

The study adds to proof that numerous cyber-criminal organisations exist in Russia or the surrounding Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), an intergovernmental grouping of Russian-speaking former Soviet republics.

Following a series of high-profile and disruptive cyberattacks, including those on US oil pipelines and Ireland’s health service, a large worldwide effort was started in 2021 to combat ransomware criminals. The United States has also successfully recovered millions of dollars from the digital wallets of several ransomware perpetrators. Russia has disputed for years that it is a haven for hackers. But at the request of the US, Russian authorities declared last month that they had disbanded the ransomware gang REvil. The investigation is an exceptionally uncommon instance of the United States and Russia cooperating on cybercrime.

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-Adv. Sabrina Bath

(Content Writer, WCSF)

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