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Russian Federation behind 'malicious' Grizzly Steppe, cyberattack, United States officials say

20 April, 2018, 01:28 | Author: Kristen Ingram
  • Britain Braces for Possible Russian Retaliation Over Syria Strikes

While both governments have known for years about Russian attempts to gain access to their networks, the joint warning is the first time either power has publicly alerted people to it on a mass scale.

"Russian government activities continue to threaten our respective safety, security and the very integrity of our cyber ecosystem", said Jeanette Manfra, the UK National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) Assistant Secretary for Cybersecurity and Communications.

No details were shared on which Australian organisations were affected and the total number involved.

Taylor was advised by Australian intelligence agencies and their counterparts in allied countries of the attacks on commercial routers. The alert outlines a multi-stage attack scenario - reconnaissance, weaponization, delivery, exploitation, installation, and command and control, and goes as far as providing some mitigating steps that can be taken to reduce the impact of attack, or stop them altogether.

A joint alert issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the United Kingdom's National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) warns that Russian state-sponsored cyber actors are actively targeting home and enterprise routers.

"We are going to push back", PA quoted Joyce as saying.

Crucial infrastructure components, such as routers, switches, firewalls and Network-based Intrusion Detection System (NIDS) devices, also face disruption. Russian Federation might be tapping into millions of home or small business computers and other devices to gain the ability to use them later in a coordinated attack on government computers or critical infrastructure, the officials said.

"Commercially available routers were used as a point of entry, demonstrating that every connected device is vulnerable to malicious activity", Mr Taylor said.

"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".

The alert explains that Russian cyber actors can modify or deny traffic travelling through network infrastructure, without installing any new software on these devices.

Looks like it's time to change the default password on your router, especially if you operate a home office.

But the officials said that the extent of Russia's successful penetration of Western computer networks was not fully clear, nor was the Kremlin's ultimate intent.

Manufacturers and ISPs are asked to not support out-of-date, unencrypted, or unauthenticated protocols and services.

A RUSSIAN journalist who wrote about mercenaries from the country being killed in clashes with U.S. troops in Syria has died after a mystery fall.

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