International News Update : Biden to raise cybercrime issue in talks with Putin

Insight Online News

Washington, May 14 : US President Joe Biden said that the Kremlin was not behind last week’s cyberattack on a key fuel pipeline, adding he would raise the issue of cybercrime during talks with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.

“We do not believe,I emphasize, we do not believe the Russian government was involved in this attack,” Biden said on Thursday while speaking on the May 7 cyberattack against Colonial Pipeline.

“But we do have strong reason to believe that the criminals who did the attack are living in Russia,” he noted.

“We have been in direct communications with Moscow about the imperative for responsible countries to take decisive actions against these ransomware networks.

“I am confident that I’ve read the report of the FBI accurately, and they say they were not — he was not, the government was not,” Biden replied when pressed by reporters whether Putin was behind the attack.

The FBI confirmed on Monday that DarkSide, a criminal group based in Eastern Europe, was responsible for the ransomware attack that forced Colonial Pipeline to shut down approximately 5,500 miles of pipeline.

Asked when the US would respond to governments allowing such cybercrime, Biden said international standards are needed for governments to take action against these criminal activities.

“I expect that’s one of the topics I’ll be talking about with President Putin,” he added.

Biden said last week that he expected to meet Putin during the trip to Europe in June, when he will attend the G7 Summit in Britain and then the NATO Summit in Belgium.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said earlier this week that Moscow welcomes the initiative by the US for holding a summit in June.

Relations between Washington and Moscow have been adversarial in recent years.

The two countries have been bitterly divided over Ukraine, human rights, cybersecurity issues, and they mutually accused the other of domestic political interference.


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