October 21, 2021

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The head of America's largest pipeline agrees: We paid the ransom to hack him into hiring him

The head of America’s largest pipeline agrees: We paid the ransom to hack him into hiring him

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The Colonial Pipeline, America’s largest pipeline, returned to fuel last Thursday. The pipeline was shut down for almost a week during a cyber attack by a hacker gang, causing panic among drivers and gas shortages at thousands of U.S. stations.

Joseph Blount, now head of the company that runs the pipeline, admitted for the first time that it was started after paying a ransom to hackers. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, he said that from the very first day of the attack on the pipeline’s information technology system, the company realized that it had to comply with the demands of those responsible for the attack. They demanded a refund to remove the malware and restore the system to function.

Blunt said the company did not know how hard the attack had compromised its structure and how long it would take to recover them. Therefore, based on the importance of the pipeline, it was decided to pay 4.4 million to the hackers Dollars.

– I know this is a controversial decision, it’s not easy for me. I was not comfortable sailing Money To these people, Blount said. In situations like this, services usually advise you to comply with hackers’ requests because this will encourage further attacks.

The most important pipeline in the east of the United States

The colonial pipeline has 9,000 with its branches Kilometers And supplies fuel to New York from Texas refineries. About 45 percent of the gasoline and diesel fuel supplied to the east coast of the United States passes through pipelines. After stopping him Work Fuel supply was disrupted and many drivers panicked, not knowing how long the gap would last. There were long lines at the gas stations, many of which let out gas. In North Carolina, Georgia and Virginia, 65 percent of stations ran out of fuel – more than 40 percent.

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According to the FBI, cybersecurity took place in the IT system that runs the pipeline A group called Darkshite demanded a ransom. Colonial Peel initially refused to answer the question of whether the demands of the hackers had been met.