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German Intelligence Spreading Scare Stories of Phantom Russian Hackers

German industries were warned they could be targeted by Russia -- with no evidence provided of course

This post first appeared on Russia Insider

Originally Appeared at German Economic News. Translated from the German by Kay Olms

The Office for the Protection of the Constitution is warning the German trade associations of attacks that could shut down the power supply in Germany. From the perspective of the intelligence agency, Russian secret services could be the perpetrator. They want to destabilize Germany; evidence for the claim was not presented.

The German energy industry is supposedly threatened by attacks, which are said to be overseen by the Russian secret services. Reuters reported on Saturday, citing a 'Cyber letter' from the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution to Germany’s trade associations, that an 'attack campaign' from the hacker group 'Sofacy' is currently in preparation. According to information from the security circles, power plants and the electrical grid could be jammed in the worst case scenario. The domestic Russian intelligence service FSB and the military intelligence service GRU are behind 'Sofacy'.

According to the Office for the Protection of the Constitution, using IP addresses, malware will be planted on company computers. The Sofacy hacker group is said to be the same group which had undertaken the large-scale attack on the Bundestag (Germany's parliamentary assembly) in the spring of 2015.

According to Reuters,the SPD politician for domestic policy, Burkhard Lischka, said in a newspaper interview that Russia intends to massively reinforce the feeling of insecurity in parts of the German population. If a hacker group were to cripple a power plant, "a destabilization is all the more likely". The view that the Russian President Vladimir Putin has a plan to destabilize Germany is also shared by CDU politician Armin Schuster, reports Reuters.

Whatever evidence these politicians of the grand coalition have for a destabilization of Germany at the hands of the Kremlin is not being announced. Those warnings, however, coincide with concerns of the U.S. services. Just recently they have mandated an investigation in order to screen Russian connections of right-wing, extreme right-wing, and Nato-critical parties in the EU. It is not clear from the congressional submissions whether or not the Americans want to have the AfD screened about their connections to Moscow.

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