Washington plans cyber attacks in retaliation for SolarWinds invasion, according to The New York Times
The report on an alleged US "preparedness" for cyber attacks on Russian networks should be framed as an "international crime", said government spokesman in Moscow, Dmitry Peskov, on Tuesday (9).
The statement came as a response to a report in the North American newspaper "The New York Times" last Sunday (7). Unidentified officials say Washington plans to attack Russian networks in retaliation for the February invasion of the SolarWinds system.
The “counterattack” is expected to take place in up to three weeks. Texan SolarWinds coordinates the Orion tool, a security system with 300,000 customers, such as government agencies in the United States and the United Kingdom.
US threat of invasion of Russian networks is 'international crime', says Moscow
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov in Omsk, Russia, on record for November 2019 (Photo: Disclosure / Tass / Mikhail Metzel)
Hackers reportedly accessed the platform's emails after taking control of the U.S. Treasury cryptographic key in late 2020. It is still unclear how many and what information was accessed.
The US official would have said that the clandestine actions would be "obvious" to Russian President Vladimir Putin and his military intelligence - but not to the rest of the world.
"This is alarming information," the Kremlin spokesman told RFE (Radio Free Europe). "The fact that the newspaper does not rule out the possibility that Washington is involved in cybercrime is a cause for concern."
On January 5, a joint statement four U.S. intelligence agencies said they had identified at least ten federal sectors affected by the hacking. The invaders operated for two weeks before they were discovered.
The US statement said that hacking groups backed by Moscow would be behind the attacks, which Russia denies. The report comes in the wake of a new cyber attack last week, this time against Microsoft email accounts.
In this case, however, Washington blames China-backed invaders. "The Chinese hack is an active threat," said White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki.