Europe

Ukraine accuses Russia over hacking

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Ukraine’s prime minister has alleged that Russia’s secret service was behind a cyber attack against German government websites.

Arseny Yatsenyuk, who is now in Germany to ask for more economic aid for his economically-troubled country, made the accusation prior to his Thursday meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

“I strongly recommend that the Russian secret service stop spending taxpayer money for cyber attacks against the Bundestag and Chancellor Merkel’s office,” Yatsenyuk said when asked by German journalists if pro-Russia hackers in Ukraine were behind the move.

However, a cyber security expert cited in a BBC report questioned the credibility of Yatsenyuk’s claim, saying there was no real evidence behind his rhetoric.

“It is interesting that countries are blaming each other for cyber attacks even though the information they put in the public domain often doesn’t substantiate their claims,” said IT security expert Alan Woodward as quoted in the report.

Woodward, the report says, believes that cybercrime is increasingly emerging as a political instrument.

“It is interesting that all the rhetoric seems to be coming from countries that have existing tensions. They are using specific cyber attacks for political point-scoring,” he added.

The attack targeted web pages of Chancellor Merkel and the German parliament.

A group calling itself CyberBerkut claimed responsibility for the hacking effort.

CyberBerkut refers to Ukraine’s now disbanded elite riot police force that were accused of beating protesters prior to the change of government in Kiev last year.

Meanwhile, German intelligence agencies have stated that they face nearly 3,000 cyber attacks per day.

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