‘Tis the Season of Ransomware Indictments, Feat. Chainalysis’ Gurvais Grigg

This week, “Opinionated” hosts Ben Schiller, Anna Baydakova and Danny Nelson are talking to Gurvais Grigg, global public sector chief technology officer at Chainalysis, a blockchain investigative firm.

Grigg spent 23 years at the FBI, rising from a trainee to assistant director. But this April, he took a career turn and joined a private sector company, which is often helping law enforcement agencies investigate crypto-related crimes.

In his intro blog post, Grigg said crypto becomes a tool of global economic influence, and it’s important for the U.S. to keep up to speed with the technology, unless it wants rivals like China or Russia to outpace it. But do we think the U.S. is the world’s best possible crypto cop? Gurvais have some ideas to share about this.

2020 and 2021, indeed, became years of a ransomware pandemic, with cybercriminal groups hitting vast numbers of companies in the U.S. and Europe. In response, the U.S. government started a massive campaign against the hackers, or rather, against people and entities who helped those hackers cash out ransom crypto.

Two Russian crypto services have been sanctioned already, the over-the-counter (OTC) trading firm Suex and crypto trading bot Chatex, and another OTC founder, Denis Dubnikov, was arrested in Amsterdam last two weeks ago, allegedly for helping launder proceeds from the Ryuk ransomware attacks.

Chainalysis has been involved in some of these investigations, and Grigg said he expects there will  be more indictments, sanctions and arrests. Also, there will probably be more ransomware attacks in the future. What is the role of companies like Chainlaysis in all that?

Listen to Anna, Ben and Danny to talk to Gurvais about all that, and more.

Gurvais Grigg’s Twitter handle is @gurvais

Mentioned in this episode:

  • US Sanctions Enforcer Blacklists a Crypto Exchange for First Time

This episode was produced, announced and edited by Michele Musso. Our theme song is by Elision.

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