- A cyberattack shut down the Colonial Pipeline on Friday.
- The pipeline is responsible for 45% of the East Coast’s fuel, and shortages are now feared.
- The DarkSide ransomware group acknowledged the hack, adding it would change its approach to targets.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
The group accused of carrying out the Colonial Pipeline cyberattack has said it never intended to cause disruption to society, and would approach targets differently in the future.
A ransomware group compromised the pipeline on Friday and demanded money in exchange for its release. The pipeline was shut down by its operators as a result.
The pipeline network, which runs from Texas to New York, is one of the country’s largest, transporting about 45% of the East Coast’s fuel, the operator said.
The FBI said on Monday that DarkSide ransomware was responsible for the hack.
DarkSide appeared to claim responsibility for the hack, saying in a Monday statement its goal was not to cause disruption, and that it would approach targets differently in the future.
“Our goal is to make money and not creating problems for society,” the group said in a statement.
“From today, we introduce moderation and check each company that our partners want to encrypt to avoid social consequences in the future.”
-DarkTracer : DarkWeb Criminal Intelligence (@darktracer_int) May 10, 2021
As Insider’s Natasha Dailey reported, the main pipeline carries more than 100 million gallons of gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, and home heating oil every day.
Colonial Pipeline said in a statement on Monday that it hoped to restore services “by the end of the week.”
But as of early Tuesday morning, the pipeline remained shut. This means fuel could become scarcer, prices may rise, and refiners may slash production as they can’t move it across the US, Reuters reported.
Joseph Blount, the pipeline’s CEO, told State Department officials at a Monday meeting that fuel shortages were likely, Bloomberg reported.
On Monday, the White House press secretary, Jen Psaki, said the White House would be “monitoring” any supply shortages and would be ready to take action if needed.
Bleeping Computer, a cybersecurity watcher, reported that DarkSide previously published a code of conduct in which it said it would not target schools, universities, hospitals, hospices, nonprofit bodies, or the government.
Some cybersecurity watchers told the BBC that DarkSide may be affiliated with the Russian state, but on Monday, President Joe Biden said there “is no evidence, based on our intelligence people, that Russia is involved.”
Russia also denied the link to DarkSide, with the country’s embassy in the US saying, “We categorically reject the baseless fabrications of individual journalists and reiterate that Russia does not conduct ‘malicious’ activity in the virtual space,” Reuters reported.
DarkSide, meanwhile, has said it had no political affiliation.
“We do not participate in geopolitics, do not need to tie us with a defined government and look for other our motives,” the group said.