Lithuania miffed to find Putin’s spyware

putin-buzz1Lithuania which is on the frontline of growing tensions between the West and Russia, says the Kremlin is responsible for cyber-attacks that have hit government computers over the last two years.

Three cases of Russian spyware on its government computers had been discovered since 2015, and there had been 20 attempts to infect them this year.

Rimtautas Cerniauskas, head of the Lithuanian Cyber Security Centre said the spyware has been active for six months before it was detected.

Tsar Putin of all the Russias’ spokesman Dmitry Peskov told Reuters they were “laughable” and unsubstantiated.

“Did the spyware have ‘Made in Russia’ written on it?” quipped Peskov. “We absolutely refute this nonsense.” He said Russia itself was targeted in cyber-attacks “round the clock,” but said it would be stupid to accuse foreign governments.

Fears of Russian cyber-attacks have come to the fore since the US election campaign when hacking of Democratic Party emails led to allegations from U.S. intelligence that Moscow was involved.

Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia were all ruled by Moscow in communist times and have been alarmed by Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula in 2014 and its support for pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.

Lithuanian intelligence services said that cyber-attacks have moved from being mainly targeted at financial crimes to more political spying on state institutions.

Russian spyware was transferring all documents it could find, as well as all passwords entered on websites such as GMail or Facebook, to an internet address commonly used by Russian spy agencies, Cerniaukas said.