Justine Brooke Murray
A pro-Russia group claimed responsibility for hacking the official website for the U.S. Congress late Thursday, replacing the page with a photo of President Joe Biden looking “puzzled,” Fox News reported.
The group “Killnet” claimed it hacked the website, causing it to shut down for about 45 minutes Thursday evening, according to Fox News. Users who tried to access congress.gov were either given an ‘Error 522’ or ‘Connection timed out’ notice, and the page also showed a pop-up image of President Biden giving a puzzled facial expression, according to CNN.
“The Library of Congress used existing measures to address the attack quickly, resulting in minimal down time,” April Slayton, director of communications for the Library of Congress, told CNN. “The Library’s network was not compromised and no data was lost as a result of the attack.”
The U.S. Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has warned about similar groups as Killnet which are known for committing hacking attacks on government websites.
The agency released a joint Cybersecurity Advisory (CSA) on their website in April, warning countries and organizations across the globe that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine puts them at an increased risk of cyberattacks, especially if they are providing material support to Ukraine.
“These Russian-aligned cybercrime groups have threatened to conduct cyber operations in retaliation for perceived cyber offensives against the Russian government or the Russian people,” the advisory stated. “Other cybercrime groups have recently conducted disruptive attacks against Ukrainian websites, likely in support of the Russian military offensive.”
The advisory urged critical infrastructure network defenders to harden their cyber devices in order to prevent hackers from committing malicious activity.
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