Russian spy agency was hacked; how will Russia respond to this cyber warfare?

A hacker group successfully launched a cyber attack against the Federal Security Service (FSB), a Russian government intelligence agency. According to reports from cybersecurity specialists, about 7.5 terabytes of classified information were extracted in the attack. 

Various media claim that among the information compromised during this incident are Russian projects to disable private browsing with Tor browser, social media blocking and the isolation of the Internet in Russia from the rest of the world web.

According to cybersecurity specialists, the FSB is the most important intelligence agency at the Kremlin’s service, fulfilling functions similar to those of the FBI in the U.S., although its functions also cover the Russian government’s intelligence activities abroad. Simply put, it’s a kind of reincarnation of the extinct KGB.

A few days ago, a hacker group self-appointed “0v1ry$” managed to hack into the systems of SyTech, a private company that works closely with the FSB. Subsequently, the hackers shared the stolen information with Digital Revolution, an internationally active hacker group; the organization published in various forums multiple samples of the stolen information, which forced the FSB to take some measures to protect its confidential data.

After leaking the information the Digital Revolution hackers began a period of inactivity; similarly, activity of the 0v1ru$ group seems to have stopped.

Among the FSB’s alleged projects is “disabling anonymity” for Tor network users, collecting information from people and organizations of interest, and extracting social media data. Various media and cybersecurity specialists have claimed that this could be the largest data breach ever occurred in Russia. 

Previously, researchers at the International Cyber Security Institute (IICS) had reported on the Russian government’s plans to isolate Internet traffic on its territory from the rest of the world’s web traffic. Vladimir Putin’s plans include the creation of a new Russia-exclusive domain name system (DNS) that will be implemented according to the president’s consideration. If so, Internet service providers would have to disconnect from any foreign server to use only Russian DNS.