Darkside Hackers Shut Down Colonial Pipeline Causing Panic

Caleb Temples, Staff Writer

On May 7, 2021, the unthinkable happened. A group of ransomware hackers known as Darkside hacked into and stole data from the Colonial Pipeline running from Texas to New Jersey, causing it to shut down.

This pipeline is the main source of fuel to over 50 million Americans on the east coast and transports around 100 million gallons of fuel everyday!

During this attack, people went into a craze, buying as much fuel as they could get their hands on.

Colonial Pipeline is a privately held Industry and doesn’t just transport fuel, it transports diesel, home heating oil, jet/rocket fuel, and military supplies.

Darkside pulled a tactic in the hacking world known as double extortion. This is when they encrypt the company’s data and want a ransom of money to get their data back.

On May 18, 2021, the hackers received a total of $90 million in bitcoin ransom payments to stop the attack and give them their data back.

Hacking is one of the most powerful things in the world due to the growth of technology over the past decade. Any hacker can steal and encrypt data to where no one can access it.

After being imprisoned for five years, Kevin Mitnick, a former member of Darkside, is now running his own business where he gets paid to hack and penetrate companies’ databases.

As powerful as it is, hacking isn’t all bad. A group called Trace Lab Hackers find missing people by using their hacking skills, which is extraordinary and helps people connect with lost loved ones.