OSCE vic­tim of cy­ber at­tack

Kuwait Times - - TECHNOLOGY -

The Or­ga­ni­za­tion for Se­cu­rity and Co­op­er­a­tion in Europe has been the tar­get of a cy­ber at­tack, a spokes­woman said yes­ter­day. The French news­pa­per Le Monde said a Rus­sian hacker group was be­hind the at­tack, but the OSCE, a se­cu­rity and hu­man rights watch­dog, said it did not have the ca­pa­bil­ity to in­ves­ti­gate the re­port. “There was an at­tack. We found out about it at the be­gin­ning of Novem­ber,” a spokes­woman for the Vi­ennabased OSCE said, con­firm­ing a story pub­lished in Le Monde. “The sys­tems are safe now. We were given en­tirely new se­cu­rity sys­tems and pass­words,” she added.

An un­named West­ern in­tel­li­gence source quoted by Le Monde at­trib­uted the hack­ing to the Rus­sian cy­ber es­pi­onage group known as APT28. That same source told Le Monde that the group was also be­hind at­tacks on the US Demo­cratic party lead­er­ship dur­ing the US pres­i­den­tial cam­paign. The spokes­woman said the OSCE was aware of “spec­u­la­tion” that APT28 may be be­hind the at­tack. “But we don’t have the ca­pac­ity to con­duct such an in­ves­ti­ga­tion and we don’t want to spec­u­late,” she said.

US in­tel­li­gence agen­cies have con­cluded that Rus­sia tried to in­flu­ence the Nov 8 elec­tion by hack­ing in­di­vid­u­als and in­sti­tu­tions, in­clud­ing Demo­cratic Party bod­ies. The 57mem­ber OSCE is best known for ob­serv­ing elec­tions and for its role in Ukraine, where it mon­i­tors a cease­fire agree­ment to end fight­ing be­tween Ukrainian troops and Rus­sian­backed sep­a­ratists in the east. Its mem­bers in­clude both the United States and Rus­sia and also Ukraine.

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