The German news agency Deutsche Presse-Agentur accuses the hacker group APT28, suspected of being close to the Kremlin, for launching attacks against public agencies in Germany.
The secure networks of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Defense would be among the victims. Just like the Chancellery and the Federal Court of Accounts. According to the source of the news agency, the hackers were able to exfiltrate data, to a still unknown extent.
An investigation was launched, led by the German equivalent of ANSSI (BSI), foreign intelligence services and the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution. The infiltration was first identified in December, and may still be underway.
At the agency, the German Interior Ministry confirmed the attack, without pronouncing on the identity of the attacker. According to Le Monde, the Bundestag's Digital Agenda Committee met in an emergency on Thursday to discuss the case.
Recall that the allocation of attacks is a very complex exercise, the software and infrastructure used to conduct them can be easily manipulated to direct suspicions to a third party. Recent leaks of state-owned hacking tools contribute to this vagueness.
The attribution of an attack is also a political weapon, espionage charges (especially on such a scale) being always a strong act. In France, the executive has the exclusivity of such an action, which he has not yet used.