6 Russian Hackers Sued by US Justice Department for Attacking Pyeongchang Winter Olympics and French Election


The US Department of Justice sued 6 Russian hackers for allegedly attacking the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics and the French election

According to a report by the US "Capitol Hill" the US Department of Justice announced on Monday that it was prosecuting six Russian hackers for allegedly attacking important international activities, including the 2017 French election and the 2018 Winter Olympics, as well as US corporate and hospital targets.


Unauthorized acts for Russia’s strategic interests

An indictment filed by a grand jury in western Pennsylvania stated that the six persons “intentionally and deliberately colluded with each other, and together with people known and unknown to the grand jury, they passed unauthorized acts for Russia’s strategic interests. Visit the victim computer, plant destructive malware and take other destructive actions".


Leaking operations against the political party of the current French President

   It is said that these attacks include hacking and leaking operations against the political party of the current French President Macron and other French politicians in 2017. 

Allegedly, they also targeted the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, in retaliation for Russia's ban on participation due to doping charges.


6 indicted Russian personnel announced by the US Department of Justice. Source: Associated Press

In addition, the six Russians are accused of being involved in attacks on Ukraine’s power grid and government agencies, causing widespread power outages.

2 attacks on the two cases involved in the investigation of the former Russian spy Sergey Skripal and his daughter being attacked by nerve agents in the UK Organization. Recent attacks on Georgian government agencies and companies.


Russian hackers for allegedly attacking the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics and the French election
US Department of Justice Seal

The 2017 NotPetya malware attack accusation

   These hackers were also accused of carrying out the 2017 NotPetya malware attack. According to reports, this is one of the most extensive and destructive international cyber attacks in history. 

The three organizations attacked by the NotPetya virus are the hospitals and facilities of Heritage Valley Health Systems, a subsidiary of FedEx, and a large U.S. pharmaceutical company. These three companies have suffered a total of 1 billion Loss of dollars.


US Assistant Secretary of Justice John Demers speaks at a press conference. Source: Associated Press

   John Demers, Assistant Secretary for National Security Affairs of the U.S. Department of Justice, said at a press conference on Monday that these allegations constitute "the most destructive series of computer attacks ever carried out by a single organization." 

The 6 Russians were charged with 7 counts, including wire fraud, computer fraud and abuse, damage to protected computers, gross identity theft and other charges.

 Demers specifically pointed out that the time chosen to initiate the charges "has nothing to do with the election to be held two weeks later."

 Investigation and Social Media help

The FBI Deputy Director David Bowditch said that the cooperation of social media companies including Facebook, Google and Twitter with the US federal authorities led to these lawsuits, but he declined to disclose the details of this partnership.

 He said, "They did provide us with very important help, and we are fortunate to enjoy this partnership in more and more investigations."

Did Russian Satellite News Agency aid the investigation report?

Russian Satellite News Agency, Washington, according to the American Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) aided the litigation report. 

On the 19th, the U.S. Department of Justice accused 6 Russian citizens of participating in a series of network intrusions and spreading malware against other countries’ infrastructure and elections in pursuit of Russian interests. action.

Is Russia responsible for the use of the nerve agent Novichok?

The U.S. Department of Justice believes that the six people intend to support the Russian government’s efforts to injure, retaliate, or otherwise use the Russian government’s efforts in Ukraine, Georgia, and the French elections, the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics, and the international community to hold Russia responsible for the use of the nerve agent “Novichok” in other countries. The way is destabilizing.

   The U.S. prosecutor said that these six people belonged to the 74455 troops of the General Staff of the Russian Army. 

The Killdisk, Industroyer, NotPetya and other malicious software they used caused nearly $1 billion in damages to the three victims mentioned in the indictment.

   Russia has repeatedly refuted allegations that Russia tried to influence the democratic process of other countries. Both the Russian President’s Press Secretary and the Foreign Minister have stated that such allegations are baseless.

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