The US Department of State has taken the issue of cyber and ransomware attacks seriously. The government has taken a new decision that may reward useful information about such attacks with cryptocurrency.
According to a Bloomberg article published on Thursday, the Biden administration plans to step up efforts to track bitcoin transfers, especially in the case of ransomware attacks.
The government intends to address cybersecurity and the use of cryptocurrency as a payment method in such attacks.
This comes after the State Department announced that its Rewards for Justice program will provide up to $10 million in rewards for assistance in identifying actors responsible for cyberattacks on key infrastructure in the US.
The government agency said it has set up a tip line using the Tor browser network, which was created by US officials for anonymous internet communications, and that it may give crypto payments in exchange for pertinent information on ransomware assaults.
Following an attack on the Colonial Pipeline system last month, US officials as part of a government task force recovered more than $2 million in cryptocurrency used to pay for ransom.
At the time, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco stated the asset seizure was the task force’s first major operation in its mandate to investigate, disrupt, and prosecute cyberattacks on critical infrastructure, implying that it will continue to look into similar operations.
Cryptocurrency traceability — or lack thereof — is essential to the attractiveness of users who want their cash to be protected from government supervision, while it appears to be a cause of irritation for lawmakers attempting to tax crypto holdings and prevent funds from being used for criminal activities.
Last year, the IRS offered a $625,000 reward to anyone who could assist in tracing Bitcoin (BTC) Lightning Network transactions as well as privacy coins like Monero (XMR).