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Officials Warn of Cyberattacks on Hospitals as Virus Cases Spike

Hundreds of American hospitals are being targeted in cyberattacks by the same Russian hackers who American officials and researchers fear could sow mayhem around next week’s election.The attacks on American hospitals, clinics and medical complexes are intended to take those facilities offline and hold their data hostage in exchange for multimillion-dollar ransom payments, just as coronavirus cases spike across the United States.“We expect panic,” one hacker involved in the attacks said in Russian during a private exchange on Monday that was captured by Hold Security, a security company that tracks online criminals.Some hospitals in New York State and on the West Coast reported cyberattacks in recent days, though it was not clear whether they were part of the attacks, and hospital offici...

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Trump Campaign Website Is Defaced by Hackers

President Trump’s campaign website was briefly taken over by hackers who defaced the site on Tuesday.The defacement lasted less than 30 minutes, but the incident came as Mr. Trump’s campaign and that of his opponent, Joseph R. Biden Jr., as well as law enforcement and intelligence agencies, have been on high alert for digital interference ahead of next week’s election.In a statement, Tim Murtaugh, a spokesman for the Trump campaign, confirmed the website’s defacement and said it was “working with law enforcement authorities to investigate the source of the attack.” He added, “There was no exposure to sensitive data because none of it is actually stored on the site. The website has been restored.”The F.B.I. did not immediately comment on the incident. The defacement was first noted on Tw...

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U.S. Issues Sanctions on Russian Center Involved in Potentially Deadly Cyberattacks

The United States on Friday imposed economic sanctions against a Russian government research organization that was responsible for a potentially deadly cyberattack on a Saudi petrochemical facility in 2017.The sanctions did not name the target, but its description of the attack matched with a hacking that year of Petro Rabigh, the Saudi oil giant, that shut off the safety systems that are used to prevent an explosion. The attackers may have succeeded had a mistake in their code not inadvertently shut down the plant.Private cybersecurity researchers have called the group that pulled off the attacks “the most dangerous threat activity publicly known.”According to the sanctions, Russia’s State Research Center of the Russian Institute of Chemistry and Mechanics built the custom tools used i...

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Russians Who Pose Election Threat Have Hacked Nuclear Plants and Power Grid

Cybersecurity officials watched with growing alarm in September as Russian state hackers started prowling around dozens of American state and local government computer systems just two months before the election.The act itself did not worry them so much — officials anticipated that the Russians who interfered in the 2016 election would be back — but the actor did. The group, known to researchers as “Dragonfly” or “Energetic Bear” for its hackings of the energy sector, was not involved in the 2016 election hackings. But it has in the past five years breached the power grid, water treatment facilities and even nuclear power plants, including one in Kansas.It also hacked into Wi-Fi systems at San Francisco International Airport and at least two other West Coast airports in March in an appa...

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