A state-sponsored Russian hacker group infiltrated the Republican National Committee’s (RNC) supplier computer systems over the weekend. Bloomberg originally revealed that the RNC suffered a breach by the hands of the prolific APT29 hackers, called Cozy Bear, who are believed to be behind a range of high-profile cyber attacks on the U.S. and their allies.
However, GOP officials quickly denied the report, adding that the real victim was an independent IT service provider known as Synnex. The hack was organized against the backdrop of a major cyber attack on the supply chain and growing hostilities between the US and Russia over cyber-espionage campaigns.
In a statement, office chief Richard Walters said the RNC learned of the attack over the weekend and “immediately blocked any access to Synnex accounts to our cloud environment.” After reviewing his systems with Microsoft, Walters said they did not access the RNC data. Spokesman Mike Reed also said Bloomberg that “there is no indication that the RNC has been hacked or any information about the RNC has been stolen.” Officials are currently working with police on the matter, Walters added.
With a focus on its services, GOP supplier Synnex as well addressed incident. The company confirmed that it is aware of “several cases where external actors have tried to access their customers” through the Microsoft cloud environment.
Cyber attacks are on the rise as hackers who support crime and the state support interruptions in work patterns caused by a pandemic to extort and wreak havoc. Just a few days ago, over 200 service providers it managed were compromised after hackers violated software giant management systems Kaseya. Prior to that, the leading U.S. fuel supplier Colonial was forced to close one of its main pipelines after suffering ransomware attack.
To protect government networks, President Biden signed an executive order in May aimed at boosting cyber security through improved information exchange between agencies, enhanced third-party software control and a public education program. In addition, Biden called for the establishment of a formal set of rules for responding to violations that would be reviewed by the head of CISA. Biden’s revenge against Russiameanwhile, it has included sanctions on dozens of entities and officials.
The group backed by the Russian government, which is believed to have committed the Synnex offense, is among the most notorious in the world. APT 29 is accused of violating the Democratic National Committee in 2016 and of large-scale implementation SolarWinds cyberattack last December, which hit nine U.S. government agencies. He is also cursed for a brazen attempt steal COVID-19 vaccine last July.
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