A spokeswoman for Angela Merkel’s CDU’s Conservative party says the party website has suffered thousands of attacks from Russian IP addresses since the election debate of Sunday. (You can find our review of the debate here: http://thegoldwater.com/news/7562-Germany-Schulz-to-Merkel-Your-Immigration-Policy-Has-Made-Germany-Unsafe )
This news will come as no surprise to the German politicians who for months had been waning that their country would likely have to expect Russian meddling into the election.
Angela Merkel has been a staunch defender of the European sanctions against many Russian officials for the illegal Russian invasion of the Crimea area of Ukraine.
Just as it was seen in earlier cyber warfare, the headquarters of the CDU in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate, experienced “massive attacks” ahead of Sunday’s debate.
Julia Kloeckner, vice chairman of Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU), held that: “Many of the senders have Russian IP addresses.”
Giving no specific details as to how the hackers tried to gain entry to the CDU site, Kloeckner did reveal that many German politicians had been receiving phishing schemes that include attachments with malicious software.
This weekend’s attack was blamed on APT 28, a Russian hacker collective with strong ties to the Kremlin, Moscow’s power base.
The head of the BfV, the German domestic intelligence agency, already declared over the summer that Berlin expected Moscow to try and meddle in their election. It is widely known that Russian President Vladimir Putin would prefer a different German chancellor.
Finally, Mr Tyson Barker, the director of the Aspen Institute, a German Think-tank that advises German business and banks, stated that attacks on a state-level CDU party site were simply a continuation of hackers trying to find weak links in the political system of Europe’s biggest economy.
”The main battle front in this hybrid war – in the U.S. as in Germany – will likely be in the states, not Berlin or Washington, Mr Barker said. “Those who thought Russian intelligence was going to sit this one out seems to have been proven wrong.”