The United Kingdom, the United States and Canada have issued a joint statement directly accusing Russia of trying to ‘hack’ its systems to steal investigations into their respective coronavirus vaccines.
The complaint comes just a week before the British publish a report about the interference in their general elections by the country ruled by Vladimir Putin, something that Downing Street considers as “practically certain”. A report that, despite having been written in May 2018, has not yet been published by the opposition of the successive governments of the conservative party.
The three joint administrations have directly pointed to the group of ‘hackers’ known as Cozy Bear, APT29 or The Dukes, as responsible, in addition to establishing direct links between them and the Kremlin for the first time.
From Moscow, however, they reject these accusations and assure that there is not enough evidence to support them, while their foreign minister has described them as “diffuse and contradictory”.
However, and according to the statement issued today, in February a series of attacks began against several centres specialized in vaccine research in these countries. Specifically, in the United Kingdom, the University of Oxford and Imperial College London are targeted as some of its objectives.
Two of the most cutting-edge Covid-19 vaccine projects in the world are being developed there, and that is why the idea of these ‘hackers’ was not to hinder the progress of the studies but to steal their property. Intellectual.
At the moment, the National Cyber Security Center (NSCS) has not given details about how many attacks have occurred or if they have been successful, but they are computer-shielding these research centres.
Even though the Russian state has its project underway, it is now unclear whether or not they have benefited from British, American or Canadian investigations. Still, from Russia, it was presumed last week that 200 million doses would be manufactured before that 2020 ends.
“We condemn these despicable attacks on those who are doing vital work to control the coronavirus pandemic,” said Paul Chester, NCSC director of operations.
The United Kingdom will continue to respond to these cyberattacks and will work with its allies so that those guilty of these acts respond to Justice,” added Foreign Minister Dominic Raab.
RUSSIAN INTERFERENCE IN THE UNITED KINGDOM
The conservative minister also pointed out that the Russian interference in the British democratic processes in recent years was something “practically certain”, not only with campaigns on social networks but also publishing documents “illegally obtained” about the trade agreement they were planning in the Kingdom. United and the United States.
After publishing them online, the then leader of the Labor Party, Jeremy Corbyn, used them during his campaign to try to weaken the ‘Tories’.
That is why the conservatives, who have been delaying the publication of the report on this interference for years, have launched their criminal investigation to find the source that leaked these documents, reserving “the right to respond with appropriate measures in the future, ” a full-blown threat to Russia about possible future sanctions.
Important documents about the UK-US trade agreement that were distributed through the Reddit social network.
Because they failed to resonate with their publication, they tried to promote them several times during the campaign. Although there is no evidence that it exists a more extensive Russian campaign in those elections, any attempt to interfere with our democratic processes is completely unacceptable.
It is, and always will be, an absolute priority for us to defend democracy and its elections. “