RISING TENSIONS: US Accuses 7 Russian GRU Officers of Hacking

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Published on: Oct 6, 2018 @ 09:11 – The US Justice Department has announced an indictment of seven Russian intelligence officers on suspicion of involvement in cyber attacks.

According to the US Department of Justice’s National Security Division, suspected members of the Russian Central Intelligence Department (GRU) allegedly participated in various illicit activities between December 2014 and May 2018, including computer intrusions that would have affected “U.S. persons, corporate entities, international organizations, and their respective employees located around the world, based on their strategic interest to the Russian government.”

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“Among the goals of the conspiracy was to publicize stolen information as part of an influence and disinformation campaign designed to undermine, retaliate against, and otherwise delegitimize the efforts of international anti-doping organizations and officials who had publicly exposed a Russian state-sponsored athlete doping program and to damage the reputations of athletes around the world by falsely claiming that such athletes were using banned or performance-enhancing drugs,” US officials said .

In addition to allegations of hacking, suspects were also indicted on suspicion of fraud, identity theft and money laundering by a grand jury in the Western District of Pennsylvania.

“We want the hundreds of victims of these Russian hackers to know that we will do everything we can to hold these criminals accountable for their crimes,” said U.S. Attorney Brady. “State actors who target U.S. citizens and companies are no different than any other common criminal: they will be investigated and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

“The defendants, all Russian nationals and residents, are Aleksei Sergeyevich Morenets, 41, Evgenii Mikhaylovich, Serebriakov, 37, Ivan Sergeyevich Yermakov, 32, Artem Andreyevich Malyshev, 30, and Dmitriy Sergeyevich Badin, 27, who were each assigned to Military Unit 26165, and Oleg Mikhaylovich Sotnikov, 46, and Alexey Valerevich Minin, 46, who were also GRU officers.”

“The indictment alleges that defendants Yermakov, Malyshev, Badin, and unidentified conspirators, often using fictitious personas and proxy servers, researched victims, sent spearphishing emails, and compiled, used, and monitored malware command and control servers.”

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