There was a moment of sheer hilarity earlier today when, during a Congressional Hearing, the CEO of Colonial Pipeline Joseph Blount took the merely farcical episode of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware hack – when, as a reminder, a ragtag band of elite “Russian” hackers somehow managed to penetrate the company’s cyberdefenses but was so stupid it left most if not all of the $4.4 million bitcoins it demanded in ransom in an easily traceable address for the FBI to track down and magically confiscate (it is still unclear how the Feds got the private key to access the “hackers” digital wallet) in days if not hours – and elevated it to a level of sheer ridiculous absurdity when he told Congress that he didn’t consult the FBI before paying the ransom.
This, pardon the parlance of our times, is complete bullshit: either the CEO is lying or, worse, he is telling the truth and as some have speculated, he, the FBI and the “hackers” are all in on this so-called ransomware breach…
… a scenario which for now is yet another “conspiracy theory” and which we expect will become proven fact in the usual 6-9 months.
Yet just a few hours later, the exact same ridiculous narrative meant to achieve just one thing – tarnish the reputation of bitcoin further to the point where the US has to ban it – has struck again, and according to the WSJ last week’s big hack, that of food processing giant JBS, was also resolved when the company paid $11 million – in bitcoin of course, because in this day and age one can’t simply dump a suitcase full of cash or send a wire transfer to an incognito account – as ransom to the criminals (who will naturally soon be unveiled as Russians because of course) responsible for the cyberattack that halted the company’s operations.
Yes, if this story seems identical to that of Colonial Pipeline, up to and almost matching the demanded ransom amount, it’s because it is: so barren is the imagination of the administration’s narrative writers that they can only regurgitate the same old story over and over.
Naturally, and just like in the Colonial “hack”, the ransom payment, in bitcoin, was made to shield JBS meat plants from further disruption and to limit the potential impact on restaurants, grocery stores and farmers that rely on JBS, said Andre Nogueira, chief executive of Brazilian meat company JBS SA’s U.S. division.