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New cyberattack targeted German politicians

November 30, 2018

The Russian hacker group "Snake" has reportedly hacked email accounts of several German officials. The cyberattack was detected nearly a year after the group allegedly accessed Germany's government network.

Green 1's and 0's ona  laptop screen
Image: picture alliance/dpa/O. Berg

German security officials discovered fresh cyberattacks on the email inboxes belonging to several members of German parliament, the German military and several embassies, news magazine Der Spiegel reported on Thursday.

The report said Germany's domestic security service, BfV, discovered the attacks on November 14.

Read more: Germany's government hackers face Constitutional Court

The BfV told Der Spiegel Russian hacker group "Snake" was behind the attack, but it was not yet clear if any data had been stolen in the most recent attack.

"The BfV was able to detect attacks again in the framework of investigating the cyberattack campaign 'Snake,'" the agency said in a statement to the magazine. "The victims are mainly in the government and political realm."

'Snake' active again

Investigators believe the hacker group also accessed the nation's governmental network in December 2017, which was detected earlier this year. The incident raised questions about the German government's network security. "Snake" has been linked with the Russian secret service.

Read more: Does technology threaten democracy?

A separate Russian hacker group, APT28 also known as "Fancy Bear," was identified as the likely source of an attack on German parliament in 2015, as well as on NATO and governments in eastern Europe. It also supposedly has ties to the Russian military.

Russia has repeatedly denied involvement in cyberattacks on German institutions.

dv/sms (dpa, Reuters)

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