7,000 LockBit decryption keys now in the hands of the FBI, offering victims hope

A ransom note is plastered across a laptop monitor.

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made Wednesday by a top FBI official, comes three months after an international roster of law enforcement agencies seized servers and other infrastructure used by LockBit, a ransomware syndicate that authorities say has extorted more than $1 billion from 7,000 victims around the world. Authorities said at the time that they took control of 1,000 decryption keys, 4,000 accounts, and 34 servers and froze 200 cryptocurrency accounts associated with the operation.

At a speech before a cybersecurity conference in Boston, FBI Cyber Assistant Director Bryan Vorndran said Wednesday that agents have also recovered an asset that will be of intense interest to thousands of LockBit victims—the decryption keys that could allow them to unlock data that’s been held for ransom by LockBit associates.

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