Jun 272017

KIEV: A global wave of cyberattacks that began in Russia and Ukraine on Tuesday wrought havoc on government and corporate computer systems as it spread to Western Europe and across the Atlantic. Several multinational companies said they were targeted, including US pharmaceutical giant Merck, Russian state oil giant Rosneft, British advertising giant WPP and the French industrial group Saint-Gobain. The first reports of trouble came from Ukrainian banks, Kiev’s main airport and Rosneft, in a major incident reminiscent of the recent WannaCry virus. Some IT experts identified the virus as “Petrwrap”, a modified version of the Petya ransomware which hit last year and demanded money from victims in exchange for the return of their data. Manhunt for hackers behind global cyberattack But global cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab said: “Our preliminary findings suggest that it is not a variant of Petya ransomware as publically reported, but a new ransomware that has not been seen before,” which it named “NotPetya”. The cyberattack also recalled a ransomware outbreak last month which hit more than 150 countries and a total of more than 200,000 victims with the WannaCry ransomware. The virus is “spreading around the world, a large number of countries are affected,” Costin Raiu, a researcher at the Moscow-based Kaspersky Lab said in a Twitter post. In the United States, Merck was hit as was New York law firm of DLA Piper. “We confirm our company’s computer network was compromised today as part of a global hack. Other organisations have also been affected,” Merck [Read More…]

Sep 292015

KIEV: Ukraine on Tuesday began hearing a case against two Russian soldiers it claims will prove Moscow’s direct involvement in the conflict in the war-torn former Soviet state. Troops captured the two men, both of whom were wounded, in May and interrogated them, broadcasting their alleged confessions in which they said they were active members of a Russian military intelligence unit operating in Ukraine. But Moscow claims the two — Captain Yevgeny Yerofeyev and Sergeant Aleksander Aleksandrov — are “volunteers”: retired servicemen who joined pro-Russian militias fighting in Ukraine’s separatist east since early last year. Read:¬†Ukraine reports heavy tank battle with pro-Russians rebels After being treated for their injuries, the two soldiers were then transferred to pre-trial detention on charges of “terrorism” and waging an “aggressive war” against Ukraine. Prosecutors are seeking to have them jailed for life, their lawyer said. “We will do everything to make sure that our citizens return home as soon as possible and get a chance to see their relatives and friends,” Russian consul Alexei Gruby told reporters. Sitting in the defendants’ cage at Kiev district court as the charges were read out, both looked healthy although Yerofeyev’s arm was still bandaged following an injury sustained during the gun battle which led to their capture in the industrial province of Lugansk. “No one left us abandoned. We remain in contact with our family,” Yerofeyev told reporters during a brief break in the preliminary hearings. He said prosecutors were “pressuring” them into giving testimony favourable to their [Read More…]

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