U.S., UK allege Russian-backed hackers of global cyber espionage campaign

The officials said the infected routers could be leveraged to launch future offensive cyber operations.

By REUTERS
April 16, 2018 20:11
2 minute read.
Computer hacking

Computer hacking (illustrative). (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

 The United States and Britain on Monday alleged that Russian government-backed hackers had infected computer routers around the world in a cyber espionage campaign that targeted government agencies, businesses and critical infrastructure operators.

US and British officials told reporters in a conference call that they planned to issue a joint alert on the attacks, which targeted routers that form a key part of the internet infrastructure in a cyber espionage campaign that could be leveraged in the future to launch offensive attacks.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


"When we see malicious cyber activity, whether it be from the Kremlin or other malicious nation-state actors, we are going to push back," said Rob Joyce, the White House cybersecurity coordinator.

The White House in February blamed Russia for the devastating 'NotPetya' cyber attack in 2017, joining the British government in condemning Russia for unleashing a virus that crippled parts of Ukraine's infrastructure and damaged computers across the globe.

US intelligence agencies have concluded that Moscow interfered in the 2016 presidential campaign and a federal prosecutor is investigating whether President Donald Trump's campaign colluded with Russians to sway the vote. Both Moscow and Trump have denied the allegations.

The US and British governments said they planned to issue a joint report on Monday afternoon providing technical details on the attacks so that organizations can determine whether they have been hacked and thwart similar future hacking attempts.

The governments asked victims to report any infections so they can better understand the impact of the campaign.



"We don't have full insight into the scope of the compromise," said Jeanette Manfra, a cybersecurity official for the US Department of Homeland Security.

US and British officials said the infected routers could be used to launch future offensive cyber operations.

"They could be pre-positioning for use in times of tension," said Ciaran Martin, chief executive of the British government’s National Cyber Security Centre cyber defense agency, who added that "millions of machines" were targeted.

The Russian attacks affected a wide range of organizations including internet service providers, private-sector firms and critical infrastructure providers, the officials said.

Martin said authorities have been tracking the campaign for about a year and the tactics behind them for longer.

"We in the UK can independently corroborate all of the detection work in this report to validate the assessment of US colleagues, and we can also confirm that all of the attacks mentioned in this report have directly affected the UK," he said.

Manfra said the campaign was widespread and can cover "everything from large enterprises to small home offices."

Related Content

August 16, 2018
'Queen of Soul' Aretha Franklin dies at home in Detroit aged 76

By REUTERS