A hacker group linked to the pipeline attack that knocked out much of the East Coat's fuel supply claims to have a code of conduct forbidding attacks on some targets

·2 min read
Colonial Pipeline
Trucks line up at a Colonial Pipeline facility. Jay Reeves/AP
  • DarkSide, the group linked to the US Colonial Pipeline cyberattack, has a code of conduct.

  • The attack knocked out a major route for gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel to the US East Coast.

  • DarkSide presents an almost-corporate persona, and says there are some targets it won't attack.

  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

The group linked to the devastating cyberattack a pipeline that supplies much of the East Coat's fuel claims to have a an ethical code governing which targets it chooses.

The Colonial Pipeline, which transports 45% of the East Coast's supply of diesel, gasoline and jet fuel, shut down because of the attack, the company said on Saturday.

The BBC cited "multiple sources" pointing to DarkSide as the perpetrators of the attack. Reuters cited a former US official and two industry sources who said DarkSide was one of a list of possible suspects.

Cybersecurity news site Bleeping Computer reported in August 2020 on the arrival of the group, which presented itself in some ways more like a legitimate company than a criminal enterprise.

Citing a press release on the dark web, which Insider was unable to find independently, Bleeping Computer said the group described a kind of ethics code.

DarkSide said it wouldn't target schools, universities, hospitals, hospices, non-profit bodies and the government "based on its principles," Bleeping Computer reported.

Instead, it said it would target companies that could afford to pay its ransoms, which could be millions of dollars.

Reuters noted that the group appears professionalized, with press releases and a mailing list. Lior Div, the chief executive of Boston-based security firm Cybereason, told Reuters: "They're very new but they're very organized.

"It looks like someone who's been there, done that."

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