🔐 "Hack-tivist" Investors Face The Music
Russian hacks are not limited to ransoms anymore. Five Russians (one with ties to the Kremlin) have been accused of hacking the servers of two companies that assist others with filing earnings reports with the SEC. The hackers then used this unreleased information to trade stocks, which banked them over $82.5 million. Vladislav Klyushin, one of those involved in the scheme, is facing a lawsuit by the SEC as well as criminal charges that include conspiracy and securities fraud.
Among the companies who earnings reports were targeted: IBM, Snap, and Tesla.
Ivan Yermakov, who authorities say was responsible for this hack, was one of several Russian military intelligence officers charged for their cyberattack operations designed to interfere with the 2016 US presidential election, notes Reuters.
The New Face of Conflict
Cyber attacks are increasingly becoming the preferred tactic for organized criminals and nation-states alike. In Russia, the line between those two groups is especially blurred—and the Kremlin prefers it that way, says the New York Times. "For Mr. Putin, a cyber attack that he can officially deny, but no one doubts is his handiwork, is the best of both worlds."
As Russian-linked hacks have intensified (and their targets/motives have become more diversified) in recent years, the US response has been anemic at best. Whether or not Klyushin is convicted (or any of the others involved are brought to justice) it took the US over 4 years to act in response. That's a century in Internet years.