(FOX 46) – Colonial Pipeline paid the criminal hacker group known as “DarkSide” nearly $5 million in ransom to regain control of its computer network, according to a report by Bloomberg.
The report said Colonial paid the ransom using untraceable cryptocurrency within hours of the initial cyberattack last Friday. A person familiar with the situation said U.S. government officials were made aware of the payment.
Upon receiving the payment, the hackers reportedly provided Colonial with a decrypting tool to restore the computer network.
Bloomberg said a representative with Colonial and a spokesperson from the National Security Council both declined to comment.
The Colonial Pipeline, which delivers about 45% of the fuel used along the Eastern Seaboard, shut down Friday after a ransomware attack by a gang of criminal hackers that calls itself DarkSide.
The company halted all pipeline operations over the weekend, forcing a shutdown that sent consumers scrambling for gas across the country.
While Colonial initiated the restart of pipeline operations late Wednesday, the company said it will take several days for deliveries to return to normal.