To be read in tandem with this earlier post.
The perpetrators of the Colonial Pipeline hack DarkSide had sought a $5 million ransom in Bitcoins to free them from their clutches. With no other option, Colonial acquiesced.
Right after that, it seems, DarkSide dissolved its operations, just about one year after they started! It received a total of $90 million in Bitcoin ransom payments before shutting down last week, according to new research by the London-based blockchain analytics firm Elliptic. It said that it had identified the bitcoin wallet used by DarkSide to collect ransom payments from its victims.
It wasn’t DarkSide’s choice, allegedly. “A message posted on the Russian OSINT channel on Telegram explains that the group lost access to its site and, more importantly, the cryptocurrency account through which it pays its hackers was drained” according to Morning Brew.
What DarkSide does is that it produces ransomwares – software that disrupts a computer system until a ransom is paid – for its clients. It is touted as Ransomware-as-a-Service(RaaS), similar to Software-as-a-Service(SaaS), a popular lingo in the It Space.