Written on: May 16, 2021 by ICM
The cyberattack had forced the company to shut down approximately 5,500 miles of pipeline and triggered widespread fuel shortages in the Southeast and panic buying in some states.
Colonial carries nearly half of the fuel supply on the East Coast, including gasoline, diesel fuel, heating oil and jet fuel. Colonial restarted operations around 5 p.m. ET on Wednesday but warned that the pipeline would not be fully functional immediately.
A U.S. official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told NBC News on Thursday that Colonial paid almost $5 million as a ransom to the cybercriminals. It’s unclear when the transaction occurred.
The Department of Energy led the federal response to the attack — which was carried out by a cyber criminal group known as DarkSide — in coordination with the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Defense.
“Since this incident began, we have been clear that our focus was on the safe and efficient restoration of service to our pipeline system,” Colonial said in a tweet. “That is what we have achieved through the commitment and dedication of the many Colonial team members.”
“Our team members across the pipeline worked safely and tirelessly around the clock to get our lines up and running, and we are grateful for their dedicated service and professionalism during these extraordinary times,” the company said.