US Convenes Summit Of 36 Countries, EU To Fight Ransomware Threats

The United States will host the second Counter Ransomware Initiative Summit on Tuesday and Wednesday, bringing together leaders from 36 countries and the European Union to shape an impactful set of discussions on how to continue to strengthen global partnerships and more effectively counter ransomware threats.

The international partnership spans most of the world’s time zones, and reflects the threat that criminal and cyberattacks bring.

Over the next two days, the summit will have an action-oriented agenda, where Counter Ransomware partners will focus on five working groups themes: resilience, disruption; virtual currency, public-private partnerships; and diplomacy.

They will also hear from leaders across the U.S. government, including FBI director Chris Wray; Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Wally Adeyemo, who will lead a discussion on countering illicit use of cryptocurrency; Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman; and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan.

“We’ve invited the private sector to join us for a discussion, because as we know, they have visibility on the threats, on the actors, the networks that are used, and on the best ways to mitigate these threats,” a Senior Biden Administration official said at a briefing to preview the Counter Ransomware Initiative Summit.

13 private companies that represent a diverse range of size, regional reach, and focus will attend the discussions and share their perspectives on three questions: “What should governments be doing? What should the private sector be doing? And what can we do together?” to counter ransomware threats.

The summit takes place at a time many countries, including the United States, are witnessing increasing incidents of hacking on the digital networks of important institutions, such as hospitals, schools, and utility companies.

Since last year’s virtual summit, the CRI partners worked to increase the resilience of all the partners, disrupt cyber criminals, counter illicit finance, build private-sector partnerships, and strengthen global cooperation to address these challenges.

Combating illicit financial and digital asset transactions will dominate discussion at the Summit.

The summit is expected to institute a set of cyber norms and rules of the road that are recognized across the globe to counter criminal ransomware threats and hold malicious actors accountable.

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