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Kremlin Calls French Allegations Of Hacking Campaign 'Absurd'

By RFE/RL February 16, 2021

The Kremlin on February 16 dismissed French allegations that hackers linked to Russian intelligence have breached several French organizations as absurd.

The assertion by the French government's cybersecurity watchdog, made in a report released February 15, comes amid growing international concerns about cybercrime and espionage allegedly orchestrated by Russian intelligence agencies.

The U.S. government is grappling with its largest hack in history, a hack it has blamed on Russian security forces.

The French National Agency for the Security of Information Systems said the hackers had taken advantage of a vulnerability in monitoring software sold by the Paris-based company Centreon.

The agency said it discovered intrusions dating back to late 2017 and stretching into 2020. It also did not identify the names or number of victims involved but said they were mainly "information technology providers, especially web-hosting providers."

On February 16, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov denied the French charges.

"Russia has never had, currently does not have, and could never have any involvement in cybercrime," Peskov was quoted as telling reporters. He said it was "absurd" to blame Moscow.

Earlier this week, the head of computer software giant Microsoft said the hacking campaign that targeted U.S. government agencies was "probably the largest and most sophisticated attack the world has ever seen."

With reporting by AFP, TASS, and Interfax

Source: https://www.rferl.org/a/kremlin- calls-french-allegations-of-hacking- campaign-absurd-/31105780.html

Copyright (c) 2021. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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