The Conti Group Threatens to Overthrow the Government of Costa Rica

Ransomware group Conti is threatening to overthrow the new government of Costa Rica and has raised its ransom demand to $20 million.

Since April 2022, Conti has been terrorizing Costa Rica with cyberattacks against ministries, foundations, institutions and electricity companies. The situation has become so critical that the government declared a state of emergency earlier this month.

Let me remind you that we also reported that Russian hackers planned to disrupt eurovision 2022, and also that Chinese hackers use a new backdoor to spy on the country’s government from Southeast Asia.

Initially, the hackers demanded $10 million for a key to recover encrypted files. However, last weekend they published two messages on their leak site, increasing the ransom that Costa Rica must pay to $20 million and threatening to overthrow the government of new President Rodrigo Chavez.

To date, of the 670 GB of data stolen from the country, Conti has already published 97%, writes The Record.

Costa Rica has received aid from the United States, Israel and other countries. The US government has even offered a $10 million reward for information about Conti.

Why not just buy a key? I don’t know if there have been other cases of a state of emergency in the country due to a cyberattack? In a week, we will remove the encryption keys for Costa Rica. I appeal to all the people of Costa Rica and to your government, organize rallies so that they pay us as soon as possible. If your government is unable to stabilize the situation? Maybe then it should be changed?says the first message on the Conti leak site.

In the second message, the extortionists called US President Joe Biden a “terrorist” and announced an increase in the ransom.

Just pay before it’s too late. Your country was destroyed by two people, we intend to overthrow the government with the help of cyberattacks, we have already demonstrated our power and strength to you, you have even declared a state of emergency.the extortionists said.

More than three weeks have passed since the cyberattacks began, but Costa Rica is still struggling to recover, largely due to damage to the Treasury’s systems. Last week, the government even had to notify its citizens to manually calculate taxes and pay in person at local banks as the digital system failed.

The attack caused damage to the customs and revenue services, as well as to several other government agencies. Since the attacks began, the country’s Ministry of Finance has been unable to manage any of its digital services, making it almost impossible to process legally required documents, signatures, and seals.
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Daniel Zimmermann

Daniel Zimmermann has been writing on security and malware subjects for many years and has been working in the security industry for over 10 years. Daniel was educated at the Saarland University in Saarbrücken, Germany and currently lives in New York.

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