Dmitry Peskov, the spokesman of Russian President Vladimir Putin, said accusing Russia of everything such as the White House hacking has become a new “sport.”
Peskov made the statement in response to a CNN report claiming that Russian hackers breached the computer system of the White House based on information from U.S. officials with knowledge of the situation.
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According to Peskov, “In regard to CNN’s sources, I don’t know who their sources are,but what’s most important is that they aren’t looking for any submarines in the Potomac River like what has been seen in other countries, [referring to the Swedish hunt for an alleged Russian submarine In October 2014].
Peskov emphasized, “We know that blaming everything on Russia has already turned into some sort of sport.”
Last month, Ukraine’s Security Service, SBU accused Russia of embarking on a hybrid war. USB claimed that the bomb attack on Kharkiv was part of Kremlin’s new strategy to destabilize Ukraine.
It was also reported that Russia threatened to target Denmark’s warships with nuclear weapons if the Scandinavian nation joins the NATO missile defense system.
Russia experiences cyberattacks every day
Peskov added that Russia is also experiencing hundred and even thousands of cyberattacks daily. Hackers are constantly attempting to penetrate the Kremlin website and President Putin’s official site every day. He said hackers tried to crash annual Q&A.
“The attempts to crash the Q&A – you know it’s a rather complex telecommunications event – are performed mostly from abroad,” said Peskov.
The FBI, Secret Service, and other U.S. Intelligence agencies investigated the hacking incident on the computer system of the White House.
The investigators suggested that Russians are behind the cyberattack because they found “tell-tale codes and other markers that they believe point to hackers working for the Russian government.”
The hackers first breached the computer system of the State Department. The investigators claimed that the Russian hackers managed to re-enter the agency’s computer system despite efforts to lock them out.
One official told CNN that the Russian hackers own the computer system of the State Department for months. It is uncertain whether the hackers were fully eradicated from the system.
On the other hand, Mark Stroh, spokesman for the National Security Council did not confirm that Russia is involved in the cyberattack, but he emphasized that they took such activity “very seriously.”
“In this case, as we made clear at the time, we took immediate measures to evaluate and mitigate the activity. As has been our position, we are not going to comment on [this] article’s attribution to specific actors,” said Stroh to CNN.
White House classified systems were not compromised
Meanwhile, Deputy National Security Advisor, Ben Rhodes denied the report that the hackers breached the sensitive parts of the White House computer system.
Rhodes said, “We have an unclassified system, and then we have a classified system, a top secret system. We do not believe that our classified systems were compromised.”
Republican Senator Susan Collins commented that the revelations that Russia was behind the breach on the White House computer system is “troubling” and further expose that the defenses of the U.S. government against cyberattacks are “dangerously inadequate.”
The Senator emphasized that Congress need to pass legislation to encourage the government and private companies to boosts their defenses against cyberattacks.
In February, National Intelligence Director, James Clapper pointed out, “Russian cyber threat is more severe than we have previously assessed.”
Pres. Obama authorized sanctions against hackers
President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order authorizing g targeted sanctions against hackers whose internet activities threatens the U.S. financial stability, foreign policy, and national security.
“Cyber threats pose one of the most serious economic and national security challenges to the United States, and my Administration is pursuing a comprehensive strategy to confront them,” said Pres. Obama.
The President emphasized that the primary focus of the sanctions would be cyber threats from overseas.