Amid increasing ransomware attacks, agency to host FinCEN Exchange

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has announced a FinCEN Exchange next month with representatives from financial institutions, other key industry stakeholders and federal government agencies to discuss ongoing concerns regarding ransomware, although specific details of the event have yet to be released.

The event will build on FinCEN’s previous November 2020 event on ransomware, with the goal of the event to assist government and private sector partners to inform next steps to address ransomware and focus resources to mitigate the threat, according to FinCEN. 

Ransomware attacks are a growing concern for the financial sector, given that financial institutions can be targeted by ransomware attacks as well as reputational and financial integrity concerns about the role financial institutions might play in the processing of ransom payments. 

Efforts to detect and report ransomware payments are vital to prevent and deter ransomware attacks, and to hold these attackers accountable for their crimes, according to FinCEN.  In October 2020, FinCEN issued an advisory to alert financial institutions to predominant trends, typologies, and potential indicators of ransomware and associated money laundering activities. 

Additionally, in June 2021, FinCEN highlighted ransomware as a particularly acute cybercrime concern in its issuance of the first government-wide priorities for anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism policy.

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