Russian hacker group APT28 are accused of planting malware in the German government’s networks for as long as a year. Previously, Russian hackers also hacked the German government in 2015. The attack is allegedly done by the same hackers that targeted Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign.
This cyberattack is evidence of a long line of cyber war events, proving that the world is not prepared for cyberattacks. Craig Hinkley, CEO at WhiteHat Security, the leading application security provider, has assessed the attack and commented below.
Craig Hinkley, CEO at WhiteHat Security:
“The alleged Russian cyberattack on the German government is the latest in a long line of cyber war and espionage events, with the German government reported to be hacked by Russians twice in the past three years. These continued cyberattacks teach us that the world is simply not prepared for cyberwarfare. With so much of our life and critical infrastructure online, it’s difficult to imagine the sheer magnitude of potential ways we could be attacked.
This also makes prevention of cyber warfare extremely difficult, and unfortunately, governments are not immune to these attacks and vulnerabilities. In our 17 years of experience assessing millions of enterprise threats at WhiteHat, we rarely find an IT infrastructure that has eliminated critical vulnerabilities. In fact, most enterprises have some kind of vulnerability that could lead to a major attack or breach. According to WhiteHat Security research, it takes on average 200+ days to fix a vulnerability, allowing attackers more than enough time to identify and craft a devastating attack.
A vigilant approach is the best way forward in a time of cold-cyberwarfare by identifying current and old vulnerabilities, threat hunting and staying ahead with new intelligence. The best way to overcome hackers is to provide a smooth attack surface without obvious holes, to improve security knowledge internally and for enterprises to be proactive in continuously scanning and testing themselves to discover potential vulnerabilities that are lurking.
The Federal Government may need to reexamine how difficult and expensive the FedRamp process is for security vendors to be able to step up and assist them with identifying and patching holes in government and political websites.”