Top German Politicians Hit With Mass Hacking Attack

Deutsche Welle reports:

Germany’s digital defense body is “intensively” investigating the apparent data leak that saw data of hundreds of politicians from across the political spectrum being published online, a spokesman for the Federal Office for IT Safety (BSI) said on Friday.

The hack targeted all of Germany’s political parties currently represented in the federal parliament, except for the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD). Politicians at the state level were also affected.

Preliminary review of the documents discovered no sensitive information. However, the data published on Twitter included mobile phone numbers, contact info, and credit card details from members of Germany’s major parties. The leak also included banking and financial details, ID cards and private chats.

The Guardian reports:

Angela Merkel’s email address and several letters to and from the chancellor appear to have been published, German media reported, though a government spokeswoman said no sensitive information from the chancellory was leaked.

Merkel’s Christian Democrats and their Bavarian sister party the CSU, along with the Social Democrats (SPD), have been evaluating the scale of the damage and the authenticity of the documents, as have the Liberal FDP, the Left party, and the Greens.

“We have been dealing with the issue since yesterday evening and are currently informing our people,” an SPD spokesman told German news agency dpa, adding that the party had been in contact with the relevant authorities.

Germany’s The Local reports:

The Bundestag (German parliament) and other institutions of the German state have proven to be enticing fruit for hackers over the past few years. The domestic intelligence service, the Office for the Protection of the Constitution, reported repeated cyberattacks last year against MPs, the military and several embassies allegedly carried out by Russian cyber espionage group “Snake”.

Also known as “Turla” or “Uruburos”, the group, which targets state departments and embassies worldwide, is believed to have links to Russian intelligence. In February last year German intelligence authorities announced that they had been tracking a hack on the foreign and defence ministries that had been going on since the summer of the previous year. A Russian hacker collective linked to the Kremlin was believed to be behind the attack.