Cyber attack targets German ministries

  • Martin Macq
  • 1.3.2018 15:52

The German Interior Ministry announced on 28 February that a number of federal agencies had been hacked in December 2017, allegedly by Russian APT28 hackers. The attack targeted the government computer network and has now been brought under control.

APT28, which has been linked to Russian military intelligence, introduced a piece of malware in the “Informationsverbund Berlin-Bonn" (IVBB) network, a special communication platform designed to be highly secure, used for example by Federal Ministries or the Bundestag. It is rumoured the hackers managed to steal sensitive data from the Foreign and Defence Ministries, while officials asserted the Defence Ministry and the German military were not affected. Top German intelligence officials, backed by lawmaker Roderich Kiesewetter, have stressed again the urgent need to give them more legal authority, funding and personnel to strike back against foreign powers when they carry out cyberattacks against federal agencies. In this regard, legal changes are envisioned allowing German intelligence officials to retaliate against foreign cyberattacks, but this initiative would only be completed by the end of 2018. The threat to German national security has been emphasised by the fact that this cyberattack exceeded the sophistication of the 2015 attack against the Bundestag, also attributed to APT28. 

  

About author: Martin Macq

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