Bitcoin Ransom of $4M demand refused by Argentina Government – Hackers Paralysised Country’s Borders
A $4 million worth of Bitcoin ransom demanded by hackers who hijacked the country’s immigration network was refused by the government of Argentina. The hack crippled the country’s immigration system leading temporary hold of border movements.
Cybercriminals who identified themselves as Netwalker – hacked Argentina’s government computers attached to the immigration agency on the 27th of August. The immigration agency, Dirección Nacional de Migraciones halted the operation due to the attack and, this made border crossing impossible in Latin American country for up to 4 hours.
Thieves demanded $2 million worth of bitcoin as ransom at first but they later raised the ransom demand to $4 million (approximately 256 BTC.) It is reported that Netwalker allegedly stole the company’s sensitive data and the ransom is demanded before they can decrypt the affected files.
The Argentinian government says that they will not negotiate with the hackers and not agree with their ransom demands. The officials also say that the critical infrastructure is not affected by the attack and the data stolen are not sensitive.
The government responded to the attack by shutting down the entire computer network of the immigration department. This prevented the malware from spreading to other networks. This leads all border crossing to a halt for four hours.
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