Officials from Homeland Security and the UK government have come together to put on worldwide alert that malicious Russian hackers have been trying to gain access to devices that control the flow of internet traffic worldwide, as announced this Monday. Although the number of affected people remains unknown, it has been confirmed that many routers have been compromised internationally.
These attacks, at least for mobile users, may manifest through attempts to trick them into giving up login credentials, granting access to passwords that will lead to access to these devices. This is one of the many ways hackers may be scanning devices and monitoring usage broadly on the internet, which is why this alert came in to call out Russia’s violations of privacy.
This also marks the first time these governments team up in order to solve a problem of this sort since 2015. Both stated that there is “high fidelity” on the fact that the Russian Government may be behind these attacks, as millions of computers and internet routers are appealing targets due to their constant functions related to the internet. This has also triggered an alert among mobile devices users.
BREAK – UK & US issue unprecedented alert against Russia “malicious cyber activity”, accusing Kremlin of “coordinated campaign” to exploit Internet infrastructure – routers, switches, firewalls compromised, millions of machines globally affected
— Deborah Haynes (@haynesdeborah) April 16, 2018
US and UK forces issue joint response to cybersecurity threat
White House cybersecurity coordinator Rob Joyce said in an attempt to help individuals and businesses take preventive measures. “Our focus today is twofold. One: continuing the pressure campaign on nations that exploit others on the Internet. And two: Encourage industry to secure the devices we depend on,”
UK’s Jeremy Fleming, the director of GCHQ, addressed the Cyber UK conference condemning Russia’s behavior by qualifying it as unacceptable after the alleged confirmations of the country’s sponsorship of the cyber attack.
Also, both the US and UK have strong beliefs that hackers are funded by the Kremlin when they breach several homes and offices. In fact, this caused the United States Computer Emergency Readiness team to issue a general alert with a detailed overview on both the systems affected and the occurrence of the events as well as informing the primary targets of the breaches
"Hackers working on behalf of the Russian government are compromising large numbers of routers, switches, and other network devices belonging to governments, businesses, and critical-infrastructure providers, US and UK officials warned Monday." https://t.co/dolvWf8TLw
— Ars Technica (@arstechnica) April 17, 2018
Who are the main targets of Russia’s latest cyberattack?
The US-CERT informed that the primary targets are those individuals who form part of governments and private sector organizations as well as infrastructure providers and internet service providers, the report also explains that this attack aims towards the exploitation of individuals via internet nexus in order to obtain credential access for the export of OS files.