On 15 October, FinCEN published a financial trend analysis on ransomware trends in Bank Secrecy Act reporting filed between January 2021 and June 2021. The report, issued pursuant to the Anti-Money Laundering Act 2020, focuses on pattern and trend information pertaining to ransomware, in line with FinCEN’s issuance of government-wide priorities for AML/CFT policy. It further establishes that ransomware is a significant threat to the US financial sector, businesses, and the public. FinCEN’s analysis of ransomware-related SAR highlights average ransomware payment amounts, prevalent ransomware variants, and prominent ransomware money laundering typologies: FinCEN identified 68 different ransomware variants. FinCEN also identified several typologies common among ransomware variants in 2021, including threat actors increasingly requesting payments in Anonymity-Enhanced Cryptocurrencies such as Monero, and avoiding reusing wallet addresses, “chain hopping” and cashing out at centralised exchanges, and using mixing services and decentralised exchanges to convert proceeds.
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