Hot Topics 2022

Invisible Bad Guys: Cybersecurity and Crypto Terrorism

Tue Mar 1, 2022
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
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In May 2021, Colonial Pipeline, an American oil pipeline system, suffered a ransomware cyberattack. As a result, Colonial Pipeline halted the pipeline’s operations to contain the attack. Colonial Pipeline, with the assistance of the FBI, paid the requested ransom (75 bitcoin or $4.4 million) within several hours after the attack. Upon receiving the ransom, the hackers sent Colonial Pipeline a software application to restore their network. It was the largest cyberattack on an oil infrastructure target in the history of the United States. But it was not a one-off event. Cyber attacks plague the government and the private sector, and organizations large and small.

After the Colonial Pipeline attack, the White House promoted a whole-of-government effort to take on ransomware, kickstarting a number of task forces designed to make the government more resilient while going after the people organizing ransomware gangs.

The Department of Justice announced that it managed to recover some of the ransom that was paid by Colonial Pipeline to the DarkSide ransomware group–seizing  63.7 Bitcoins of the 75 Bitcoins that Colonial Pipeline paid.

This program will focus on cybersecurity and crypto terrorism including ransomware vulnerabilities and protections. It will explore the roles of private industry and government–specifically who in the US intelligence community is responsible for detections, actions and decisions.

Speaker Sean Roche recently returned from the Munich Security Conference. He will include how the intelligence community typically addresses these issues from both the U.S. perspective and in collaboration with partner nations to provide insights regarding the strategies employed in this new domain of warfighting.

Kathy and Neal Kimmel generously underwrite our Hot Topics Series. 

For all in-person events, proof of full vaccination, defined as two doses of Pfizer or Moderna or one dose of Johnson & Johnson, will be required for all attendees upon entry to the event along with a photo ID. We are also requiring all attendees to wear a mask at our live events. If you are sick or if you have come into contact with someone that has tested positive for COVID-19, please protect yourself and others and stay home. For those who are unable to meet the requirement, refunds will be provided.

We will continue to monitor the situation and are prepared to implement and communicate any changes to our operations in accordance with CDC, state and local guidelines.

*This is an in-person program and will not be available as a Zoom webinar; it will NOT be recorded based on the sensitive content of the program.

This Event is passed
There is no video for this event.


Sean Roche

Sean Roche

Former Associate Deputy Director for Digital Innovation

Central Intelligence Agency