U.S. Government Targeted by Russian Hackers
On November 14, 2018, a Russian hacking group known as APT29 or Cozy Bear, sent out emails impersonating State Department public affairs specialist Susan Stevenson. The email included a malicious document, claiming to be from State Department official Heather Nauert. The end goal of the attack was for users to ignorantly download the document, which would install malware. The malware installation would give the Russian hackers a wide range of access to the user’s IT network.
The email was distributed to various targets, including military agencies, law enforcement, defense contractors, and media and pharmaceutical companies. Additional information identifying which branches, contractors, or companies are not being disclosed at this time. Officials are also opting not to disclose how much damage resulted because of this attack.
Although various resources have confirmed APT29 is linked to the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service, Russian officials have adamantly denied any involvement with APT29 or any other cyber attacks targeting the U.S.
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