The “Qakbot” malware platform was dismantled


An international law enforcement operation nicknamed Duck Hunt,which involved participation of the Federal Bureau of Investigation as well as agencies from France, Germany, the Netherlands, Britain, Romania and Latvia, had taken down the notorious “Qakbot” malware platform used extensively by cybercriminals in a variety of financial crimes. It was used by Russian speaking gangs.”Together we have taken down Qakbot and saved countless victims from future attacks,” U.S. attorney Martin Estrada told a news conference.


The Justice Department seized over $8 million in cryptocurrency from the hackers.Qakbot malware had infected more than 700,000 victim computers, facilitated ransomware deployments, and caused hundreds of millions of dollars in damage to businesses, healthcare providers, and government agencies, with $58 million in ransoms paid by victims. FBI Director Christopher Wray said victims ranged from financial institutions on the East Coast to a critical infrastructure government contractor in the Midwest to a medical device manufacturer on the West Coast. Around 700,000 computers were affected globally. Qakbot has been around for about 15 years. It’s known the hackers can rebuild their computer infrastructure after the takedown, but FBI officials are hoping that will take a while.


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