The cyber attack that hit part of Germany’s federal government’s computer network is still underway and experts are trying to keep it under control, German parliament’s secretive commission official Armin Schuster said on Thursday.
The Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party, made a brief statement to the press on behalf of the commission, which held an emergency meeting in the Bundestag (parliament) after news of the attack leaked yesterday.
“This is a real cyber attack against a part of the government network. It is a process, an attack that is still going on,” Schuster confirmed after the commission heard for two hours the explanations of the officials.
According to the magazine “Der Spiegel”, the attack would have come from a group of Russian hackers called “Snake”, also known as “Turla”. According to the publication, this group, which allegedly acts on the orders of Russia’s secret services, would have sought information from the German government.
The first information released yesterday by different German media pointed to the so-called “APT28”. The CDU deputy, who declined to give details of the ongoing operation so as not to “alert” the author, pointed out that the German government “tries to control the process” and said it is too early to take stock of the damage.
The German Interior Minister, Thomas de Maizière, warned that it was a “very serious” attack, carried out “professionally” and “extensively planned”.
Members of the commission made visible the discontent that they knew through the press about what happened yesterday, something Greens spokesman Konstantin von Notz called “absolutely unacceptable.”
Interior Ministry spokesman Johannes Dimroth confirmed the cyber attack yesterday and said he had been “isolated and controlled,” but he also gave no details, arguing that investigations were still ongoing.
According to German press reports, “hackers” would have accessed at least once important data from the Foreign Ministry and probably from other state security departments. Germany’s spy services have repeatedly warned of the threat of such hacking by Russian hackers.
The RPT 28 is cited as the author of the cyber attack detected in May 2015 against the Bundestag computer system, revealed because of certain anomalies in the internal network operation and alleged attempts by unknowns to access the database.