Cybersecurity

Biden: ‘Initial thinking’ recent ransomware attack not by Russian government

President Biden said Saturday that the “initial thinking” is that the Russian government is not behind a ransomware attack that targeted a tool provided by Miami-based IT software management company Kaseya. 

Speaking to reporters in Traverse City, Mich., Biden said he’s directed the “full resources of the federal government” to investigate the attack, according to a pool report.

Biden said that he’s also told Russian President Vladimir Putin that the U.S. would respond if Russia is deemed responsible for these kinds of attacks. 

“The initial thinking was it was not the Russian government, but we’re not sure yet,” Biden said.

Kaseya warned on Friday that was experiencing a “potential attack against the VSA that has been limited to a small number of on-premise customers” as early as 2 p.m. EDT.

The attack may have affected 200 of Kaseya’s clients. 

The company said it was “investigating the root cause of the incident with an abundance of caution” but advised customers to immediately shut down the VSA server until further notice.

Huntress Labs, an independent security firm, told Reuters that it believed that the Russia-linked group blamed for the recent attack on meat producer JBS USA was responsible for the attack.

The FBI attributed the hack on JBS to REvil and Sodinokibi, and experts say both names represent the same group. 

The attack on Fourth of July weekend follows a series of high-profile ransomware attacks, such as the one on JBS and an earlier attack on Colonial Pipeline, which proved disruptive in the U.S. The Colonial Pipeline hack resulted in a temporary halt in the company’s operations, which led to a gas shortage in parts of the United States.

During a summit in Geneva last month, Biden said he and Putin agreed to work together to address cybersecurity concerns, such as ransomware attacks on critical infrastructure.

Tags Joe Biden Kayesa Ransomware attack Vladimir Putin
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