NSA-Built Bitcoin Ransomware Siege Enters 13-Week Standoff As State Of Emergency Is Declared
NSA’s Bitcoin Ransomware Siege: Declare A State Of Emergency, Citizens Urge Governor
The US city of Baltimore is entering its fourth week of Baltimore’s crippling bitcoin siege, leaving the citizens begging the Governor of Maryland, Larry Hogan to declare a state of emergency. The report by UPI indicates that the city of Baltimore officials is still unable to explain the cyber attack that is still affecting some government systems.
Due to the gravity of the case, per Baltimore’s City Council President Brandon Scott said he has already advised the governor to send a letter to the federal authorities, seeking their assistance. He stated thus:
“I sent a letter to Governor Hogan, asking him to officially declare a federal disaster relief funds.’’
The horrifying ransomware attack, which was first discovered by local authorities on May 7 took the state by surprise. The attack has succeeded in terrorizing the city and crippling critical services such as online payment and real estate transactions.
Consequently, the city had no choice but to switch to manual processes, including using old paper certificates for property transactions. The attackers demanded 13 bitcoins, which was around $113,000 at current prices, which the city refused to pay.
Federal disaster relief funds were sought after local authorities realized that the National Security Agency was complicit in the creation of ransomware variant known as Robinhood, which was deployed against the city of Baltimore.
The investigation by a top news agency, the New York Times revealed that a key component of the malware was developed by the NSA.
The report indicated that the NSA created a cyberweapon, named EternalBlue, but lost control of it in 2017. The main purpose for the creation of EthernalBlue was to gather delicate information and to execute counterterrorism missions. The weapon basically targets loopholes in software development by the software giant, Microsoft.
After the weapon went rogue, it has been used by hackers backed by North Korea, China, and Russia in cyber-attacks all over the world, but this will be the first time, it was used on US soil. Furthermore, the city of Greenville and North Carolina have also faced similar attacks in the past.
Since the attacks were sudden and swift, services that were affected will remain inaccessible until something urgent is done to eradicate the threat. But indicators show that after normalcy has been restored, the state will need a whole lot of money to get back to shape.
The spate of cyber-attack has increased world over, Bitcoin Exchange Guide reported in February how the bank of Valletta in Malta lost $14.7 million due to cyber- attacks.
The attack left individuals and business owners with the bank without the ability to even access their funds.
The attackers were so swift that they moved around 13 million Euros, which appears to be have been dispersed into foreign accounts.
The act by the syndicate has intensified the cry for countries to consider a stable and decentralized alternative to the traditional way of doing things.