Russian hackers, including groups believed loosely connected to the Russian state, are claimed to be behind an upsurge in cyber-attacks on EU institutions.

There has been a significant increase in the number of cyber-attacks on the web-sites of EU governments, large Western industrial corporations and public associations which are believed to originate in Western Russia according to a recent report by FireEye Inc.

Last year major EU targets of Russian hackers reported by Fire Eye included the German Bundestag, the Polish government the French TV5MONDE channel as well as web-sites of other EU state agencies and association.

A source in the Ukranian State Security Service told SC that prior to the middle of 2014 the activitites of hackers in Russia had been controlled byvarious Russian youth movements (some of which were affilated with the national government),  which sometimes ordered the attacks by professional hackers. These activities were mostly focused on attacks on Western banks and information theft. At the same time in recent months particular attention has been paid to propaganda in social networks and trolling.

The attacks have also been conducted via popular social networks, through the infection of users' computers by viruses. Among social networks, the biggest concerns relate to VKontakte, the largest Russian social network in Europe, which is especially popular among Russian-speaking users, particularly in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and other post-Soviet states.

Recently there have also been attempts by Russian hackers to get illegal access to Facebook and other Western social networks, suggesting that more stringent breach detection solutions need to be implemented.

You can read the full article on SC Magazine UK here.

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