Russia Hacked ‚Hundreds‘ of Companies Worldwide

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Hackers with deep ties to Russia and its government have been penetrating the computer networks of energy companies in Europe, the United States and Asia, according to a new report.

The campaign, dubbed „Energetic Bear,“ targeted hundreds of companies in more than 23 countries, according to the cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike, which revealed the operation in areport published on Wednesday.


China and its army of hackers are the usual suspects involved in cyber operations to steal intellectual property for an economic advantage. Security firm Mandiant exposed the operations of a sophisticated group of Chinese hackers called APT1 last year. In addition, the U.S. government, most recently in a November 2013 report, has accused the Chinese government of spying on corporations for years. Chinese officials have long denied these accusations.

But in this case, according to CrowdStrike, it seems like Russia — not China — was the culprit in economic spying. Russia is more commonly considered a host for cybercriminals trying to make profits by stealing passwords or credit card data. Russians also reportedly attackedEstonia in what some refer to as one of the first instances of cyberwar.

„This was really one of the first evident cases of Russian activity we’ve seen in a long time,“ Adam Meyers, CrowdStrike’s vice president of intelligence, told Mashable, referring particularly to cyber espionage.

It’s often hard to identify the people behind complex cyber espionage campaigns, and companiesrefuse to point fingers. But in this case, while proceeding with caution, researchers at CrowdStrike are confident they have the right guys.

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