Computer virus that stole data of 70 million American customers partly written in Russian

The malicious software that was used to steal personal data of 70 million customers of US-based retail chain Target was written “partly in Russian”, the online version of The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday. The publication refers to a report made by federal and private investigators and sent to major retailers. According to experts, this software dubbed KAPTOXA appeared on the hacking market in spring 2013. Apparently, comments to the program code were written in Russian.

The document notes that this hacking program was innovative and bespoke a high level of excellence of those who stood behind its creation. Antivirus software used in computing networks of American retail chains turned out to be useless in the face of it. 17.01.14 More

NATO launches largest-ever cyber security exercises

NATO on Tuesday launched its largest-ever cyber exercises to practise warding off massive, simultaneous attacks on member states and their partners.

Based at the alliance's cyber defence centre in EU member Estonia, the exercises will last three days and include participants in over 30 European states.

"Cyber attacks are a daily reality and they are growing in sophistication and complexity," Jamie Shea, a NATO official specialising in emerging security challenges, said in a statement. 26.11.13 More

Russia, US to conduct major operation against drug mafia

Russian and U.S. anti-drug services in the near future plan to strike a major blow to the international drug mafia, Chairman of the State Anti-Narcotics Committee, Director of the Russian Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN) Viktor Ivanov said in an exclusive interview with Itar-Tass On Thursday evening.

“Aspects of the joint operation were discussed in Miami during a session of the Counternarcotics Working Group of the U.S.-Russian Bilateral Presidential Commission,” he said.

The operation details were not disclosed. The head of Russia’s Drug Control Service expressed confidence that the forthcoming operation would cause “a lot of trouble to those involved in drug trafficking.” 15.11.13 More

US tested Soviet MiG fighters at mysterious area 51

The United States covertly tested Soviet MiG fighter planes at the mysterious Area 51 site in the Nevada desert in the 1960s, including one plane secretly obtained by Israel, according to declassified US government documents published this week.

The first of the Soviet fighters, a MiG-21, was loaned to the United States after Israeli secret intelligence services obtained the aircraft from an Iraqi air force captain who defected in 1966, according to George Washington University’s National Security Archive, which published the declassified documents on its website Tuesday. 31.10.13 More

US and Gulf nations seek 'missile shield' against Iran

As tensions with Iran grow over its refusal to suspend its nuclear program, United States and Gulf nations said to be mulling deployment of broad regional missile defense system to ward off potential Iranian attack.

As reported by The New York Times on Wednesday, the United States and its Arab allies are knitting together a regional missile defense system across the Persian Gulf to protect cities, oil refineries, pipelines and military bases from an Iranian attack. 10.08.12  More

Canada 'spy' sold US, Australia, UK secrets

A Canadian naval officer arrested this year for allegedly leaking secrets may also have compromised top level Australian, British and American intelligence, a report said Wednesday.

Jeffrey Delisle, a naval intelligence officer, was charged in Canada in January with communicating over the past five years "with a foreign entity, information that the government of Canada is taking measures to safeguard".

Canadian reports said Ottawa expelled four Russian diplomats in the aftermath of Delisle's arrest, although Moscow denied this. 25.07.12  More

U.S. lawmakers cut Pentagon ties with Russian arms exporter

U.S. lawmakers passed a bill on Thursday breaking contracts between the Pentagon and Russian state-run arms exporter Rosoboronexport, which they claim is "arming the oppressive Syrian regime,” the House of Representatives said on its website.

The bill, introduced by Democrat Congressman Jim Moran, was passed by an overwhelming 407-5 vote and was attached to the 2013 U.S. military budget, according to the House of Representatives’ statement. 20.07.12  More

US official to visit Russia to discuss defense issues

A senior US official will visit Moscow at the end of the week to discuss arms control and international security issues, the State Department said in a statement Monday.

Acting US Undersecretary for Arms Control and International Security Rose Gottemoeller will arrive in Moscow in the wake of a report last week that Russia has been testing a new cruise missile that some White House officials believe violates a 1987 nuclear treaty banning medium-range missiles. 05.02.14 More

US to upgrade old nukes in Europe to 'all-in-one' bombs

The Pentagon has announced it will upgrade old nuclear bombs deployed in Europe to all-purpose missiles with augmented tactical potential, in what many arms watchdogs believe to be the equivalent of developing a new weapon.

The new development contradicts President Obama's vow not to create any new nuclear weapons or enhance old ones to give them new military capabilities. Critics also warn this decision may threaten disarmament negotiations between NATO and Russia, who are to tackle non-strategic nuclear weapons.

Last week, spokespeople of the military, the Pentagon and the Energy Department announced the joint program to redesign B-61 nuclear bombs, which have been the primary nukes in the US arsenal since the end of the Cold War. 11.11.13 More

U.S., Russia, Norway in joint naval drills

U.S., Russian and Norwegian naval forces are holding joint firing exercises in the Norwegian Sea, a Russian Navy official said on Wednesday.

The Northern Eagle 2012 trilateral naval exercises for Russia, Norway and the U.S. began on Tuesday, 21 August, in the Norwegian Sea.

The U.S. Navy's USS Farragut guided missile destroyer, Russia's Admiral Chabanenko Udaloy II class destroyer, and Norway's MS Nordkapp frigate are set to "perform firing exercises at an above-surface target" later on Wednesday. 23.08.12  More

NASA rover Curiosity makes historic Mars landing

NASA's Mars science rover Curiosity performed a daredevil descent through pink Martian skies late on Sunday to clinch an historic landing inside an ancient crater, ready to search for signs the Red Planet may once have harbored key ingredients for life.

Mission controllers burst into applause and cheers as they received signals confirming that the car-sized rover had survived a perilous seven-minute descent NASA called the most elaborate and difficult feat in the annals of robotic spaceflight. 06.08.12  More

F-16 fighter jet splash down in Pacific near Kurils

An American F-16 fighter jet went down in a Russian exclusive economic zone near the Kuril Islands on Sunday. The pilot successfully ejected before the jet plummeted into the waters below.

“The Kamchatsky territorial naval rescue center reported at 8:30 am local time (8:30 pm GMT) that an aircraft was in distress over the Pacific Ocean near the northern Kurils,” Andrey Orlov, a spokesman for the Russian Border Guard Service in the Far East said. Later on it turned out to be an American F-16.  23.07.12  More

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