Russia behind Norwegian cyberattack – claim

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Russia was behind a cyberattack launched against the Norwegian parliament in August, the Norwegian foreign minister said in an accusation Russia denied.

On September 1, the Norwegian parliament sustained a cyberattack the previous week and email accounts of lawmakers and employees were hacked.

“Based on information available to government, it is our assessment Russia stood behind this activity,” Ine Eriksen Soereide said in a statement.

The Russian Embassy in Oslo said Norway’s accusations were not backed by evidence and were unacceptable.

“We regard this as a serious deliberate provocation, harmful for bilateral relations,” the embassy said in a statement.

When Norwegian authorities announced the incident, they did indicate who was behind the attack.

That we go out with attribution is a strong signal from Norwegian authorities,” Soereide told reporters.

Norway wants a pragmatic relationship with Russia, but couldn’t accept such attacks against its most important democratic institution, she added, when asked whether the attack would have consequences for the binational relationship.

“We cannot accept parliament being the subject of such attacks.”

Norway, a member of NATO, has a border with Russia in the Arctic.

Hackers backed by the Russian state are blamed for cyberattacks against Western private and public institutions.

The latest includes attempts to steal COVID-19 vaccine research and hack a firm working with US presidential candidate Democrat Joe Biden, which Russia also denies.