Five large banks in Russia suffer major DDoS attack
Five Russian banks have been hit by a major cyberattack, according to the country’s central bank and regulator, Bank of Russia.
Among the targeted banks were state-owned Sberbank and Alfa-Bank (Russia’s largest privately-owned bank).
Hackers sought to overwhelm the websites of the banks by deluging them with data in a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack. The data floods began on 8th November 2016 and have continued intermittently, the central bank revealed.
According to a Moscow-based cybersecurity and anti-virus provider, Kaspersky Lab, the attacks were among the largest it had seen aimed at Russian banks. The majority of these attacks lasted for about an hour each, but the largest one continued for 12 hours, Kaspersky said.
Sberbank said it neutralised the attack without any disruption to client services. According to the bank’s spokesperson, the fist attack was registered early in the morning, and the next one cam in the evening. “It involved several waves, each of them twice as powerful as the previous one. The bank’s cybersecurity noticed and located the attack in time. There have been no problems in client online services,” the spokesperson told local news agencies.
Sberbank also revealed it said it had suffered 68 similar attacks in 2016 but the latest one ranked among the biggest it had faced.
Alfabank also confirmed the fact of the DDoS attack, but played down its severity. “There was an attack, but it was relatively weak. It did not affect Alfabank’s business systems in any way,” the bank said to RIA Novosti.
The hackers behind this attack generated masses of data by taking over smart devices such as webcams and digital video recorders, it is understood. Devices in the US, India, Taiwan and Israel were used in the attack, according to Kaspersky.