[Update] Alleged LockBit Ransomware Gang Leader Now Identified: Who is ‘LockBitSupp?’ : Tech : Tech Times | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware

Just a day before, law enforcement officials trolled the LockBit ransomware gang by restoring its dark website. Apparently, the traces of criminals are nowhere to be found but only the weird messages posted by the police to make it “alive.”

The authorities from the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia were not joking in the disclosure that they were teasing when they finally identified Russian national Dmitry Yuryevich Khoroshev as the alleged leader behind the infamous ransomware group. 

This revelation follows a meticulous investigation involving multiple countries and marks a crucial step in disrupting the activities of one of the most formidable cybercrime syndicates.

The Rise of LockBit

(Photo : NFT gallery from Unsplash)

The FBI, UK National Crime Agency, and Europol identified the admin behind the LockBit ransomware gang as Russian national Dmitry Yuryevich Khoroshev.

Since its emergence in 2019, LockBit has ascended to notoriety in the cybercrime world, orchestrating extensive ransomware attacks and extorting over $120 million from various high-profile victims. These include major corporations like Boeing, significant institutions such as the UK’s Royal Mail, and even healthcare facilities. 

Despite its widespread influence, the true identity of its leader, known by the handle LockBitSupp, remained shrouded in mystery, concealed behind digital avatars and online bravado.

Related Article: US, UK Take Down Lockbit Ransomware Gang, Seize Its Dark Web Leak Site

Operation Cronos Strikes

According to Bleeping Computer, the turning point in this cyber saga came earlier this year with Operation Cronos. Spearheaded by the UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) and supported by the FBI and other international forces, the operation successfully penetrated LockBit’s defenses. This included arresting key members, shutting down servers across multiple regions, and seizing crucial cryptocurrency assets linked to the group. These actions collectively dismantled the operational capabilities of LockBit, signaling a significant victory for global cybersecurity efforts.

Inside LockBit’s Operations

Further insights reveal that LockBit’s infrastructure hosted around 7,000 unique attack plans, implicating over 100 hospitals among other entities, despite the group’s internal policies against targeting healthcare providers. The operation also unearthed communications between LockBitSupp and its affiliates, showcasing the extensive network and the operational complexity of the ransomware enterprise, as per Bleeping Computer.

“If you are a cyber criminal, and you are operating in these marketplaces, or forums or platforms, you cannot be certain that law enforcement are not in there observing you and taking action against you,” NCA’s National Cyber Crime Unit’s head Paul Foster says.

LockBit’s Tactical Evolution

Under the stewardship of LockBitSupp, the group not only executed numerous attacks but also innovated continuously, developing sophisticated malware tools that were leased out to other cybercriminals. These ‘ransomware-as-a-service’ (RaaS) arrangements allowed LockBit to maintain a steady income stream while expanding its technological arsenal, evident from the multiple updates to its malware.

The Cultural Persona of LockBitSupp

Interestingly, LockBitSupp cultivated a unique public persona, engaging with the cyber community through forums and even whimsical challenges like a tattoo contest, blending cyber threats with a touch of eccentricity. This blend of professionalism and flamboyance helped the leader maintain an enigmatic yet influential presence online.

The Implications of Exposure

The identification of Dmitry Khoroshev poses new challenges for the future of LockBit. With their leader’s anonymity compromised, the group faces potential fracturing as affiliates and smaller factions might distance themselves, fearing heightened scrutiny. Moreover, the unveiling of internal strategies and personal identifiers adds a layer of vulnerability to LockBit’s remaining operations.

The exposure of LockBitSupp is a watershed moment in the fight against global cybercrime, highlighting the efficacy of international cooperation in tackling sophisticated digital threats. 

Still, that doesn’t mean that organizations should let their guard down even for a moment as other cyber threat actors can strike anytime.

Read Also: Spyware Problems Are Getting Under Apple iPhone’s Skin Through the Years

ⓒ 2024 All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.


Click Here For The Original Source.


National Cyber Security