USA and UK Blame Russia for Hacking Internet Routers Globally


Globally, this effort had targeted millions of machines to spy on ISP customers, organizations and government agencies.

In a joint statement, the British National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the US Department of Homeland Security warned that a global hacking campaign by the Kremlin had already started.

"For over twenty years, GCHQ has been tracking the key Russian cyber-attack groups and today's joint UK-US alert shows that the threat has not gone away".

"We have high confidence Russian Federation has carried out a coordinated campaign to gain access to enterprise, small office/home office routers known as SOHO routers, and residential routers, and the switches and connectors worldwide", Joyce said in a conference call.

"Extracted configuration files may contain sensitive information, such as device administrative credentials, and could be used to compromise the router/switch and enable targeting of other devices on the network". Attackers also sought to undermine the firewalls and intrusion detection systems organisations used to spot malicious traffic before it reached users.

This is because if the reports are to be believed, Russian Federation has apparently been hacking routers in homes around the world.

"We expect the British government to declare the same".

What no-one is quite sure of is whether this creates a deterrent a bit like mutually assured nuclear destruction in the Cold War.

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U.S. and United Kingdom officials say Russian state-sponsored hackers have been historically targeting Internet routing equipment in order "to conduct man-in-the-middle attacks to support espionage, extract intellectual property, maintain persistent access to victim networks, and potentially lay a foundation for future offensive operations".

Ciaran Martin, director-general for cyber security at GCHQ, said Russian Federation could try to bring down water, gas and electricity systems, as well as banks, hospitals and transport.

Taylor said while the devices could have been used to access sensitive data, there was "no indication" Australian information had been compromised.

"This is a significant moment in the transatlantic fight back against Russian aggression in cyberspace", added Ciaran Martin, the Chief Executive Officer, UK National Cyber Security Centre, who also took part in the briefing.

The advice given to firms has included ways to configure their systems correctly and how to apply patches to address hardware vulnerabilities.

BRITAIN is braced for cyber warfare attacks by Russian Federation that could send services such as healthcare, transport and utilities into meltdown.

"The UK government will continue to work with the USA, other global allies and industry partners to expose Russia's unacceptable cyber behaviour, so they are held accountable for their actions", he commented.