China Targets Russia & Russia Launches Cyber Attacks Against Norway? Cyber Warfare Gets Stronger

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"It was totally avoidable."

So China is reportedly targeting Russia, and Russia is busy launching cyber attacks against Norway? Appears so.

Latest reports and official statements from Norway confirm that at least nine personal civil-servant email accounts have been targeted by hackers in spear-phishing attacks. The attacks are believed to be associated with the Russian intelligence agencies, the Norwegian security service claimed earlier today. The country confirms that no classified information has been taken.

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Norway's foreign ministry, army, the Norwegian radiation protection agency, a school and the parliamentary group of the Labour party, along with other institutions were targeted in a cyberattack by a sophisticated espionage group suspected to be linked to the authorities in Russia. Norwegian intelligence service PST was also among the targets, the security service said Friday.

In a spear-phishing campaign, the emails that targeted victims appeared to be from known individuals or businesses. "The attacks had a signature that indicates those behind the hacking can be identified as APT29," PST spokesman Martin Berntsen told The Associated Press. "They can be traced back to Russia."

APT29 (advanced persistent threat), also known as Cozy Bear, was linked to hacks on U.S. Democratic Party computers last year. Colonel Sergei Mikhailov, deputy director of the FSB’s Office for Information Security, the second-most senior figure in the office is reportedly responsible for operating Cozy Bear. He was arrested recently in what is being called as the highest-profile arrest in the Russian security agency since the breakup of the Soviet Union.

Speaking to Verdens Gang (VG), Bernsen said there was "no reason to believe that classified information had been obtained in connection with the attack". Since no classified information is reported to be stolen, "it's difficult to know what the goal" of the operation was, the spokesperson added.

Legislative elections in the country are scheduled for September 11. However, so far the intelligence agency hasn't discovered any link to the votes. Analysts believe the attack could be an answer to the recent deployment of some 300 US soldiers on Norwegian soil.

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