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01/14/2022
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WorkScoop
It is not a quiet day for cybersecurity news from Eastern Europe. The FBI says it's shifting its focus for fighting cybercrime. And the Albuquerque area faces down another cyberattack. This is CyberScoop for January 14. (Editor's note: Due to Monday's federal holiday, our next newsletter will publish on Tuesday, January 18.)

Ukraine government websites defaced as regional security issues loom

Several Ukrainian government websites were hacked early Friday, knocking them temporarily offline. Government officials didn't immediately attribute the attacks, but the come amid rising tensions between Ukraine and Russia on regional security issues, as Russia ponders an invasion of its neighbor. Russia has infamously subjected Ukraine and other regional governments to cyberattacks ranging from basic defacement to power grid takedowns. AJ Vicens has the latest.


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Russia says takedown rocks REvil gang

Russian authorities say they dealt a death blow to the REvil ransomware gang on Friday, raiding multiple locations in Moscow, St. Petersburg and elsewhere. The Federal Security Service, or FSB, said it made more than a dozen arrests and captured hard cash, cryptocurrency, computers and cars. REvil, one of the most aggressive and successful Russia-based cybercrime groups, has been under pressure over the past year from global law enforcement as well as U.S. Cyber Command. The FSB said it made the raids at the requests of U.S. law enforcement. Joe Warminsky has more context.


New year, new FBI cybercrime emphasis

A top FBI official said Thursday that the bureau is moving away from an "indictment- and arrest-first model into the totality of imposing costs on our adversaries." Speaking at an event hosted by the Silverado Policy Accelerator, Bryan Vorndran, assistant director of the FBI's cyber division, emphasized the FBI's diverse incident response and intelligence capabilities. Elsewhere, Tonya Ugoretz, deputy assistant director of the cyber division, said the FBI would look to repeat ransomware payment seizures like the one after the Colonial Pipeline attack. "The types of ransomware seizures that you saw us undertake with the Department of Justice last year are certainly things we want to replicate … and try to scale,” she said at a Washington Post event. Tim Starks reports.


Attack closes Albuquerque schools for multiple days

Public schools in Albuquerque, New Mexico, remained closed for a second consecutive day Friday due to a cyberattack, officials said. Albuquerque Public Schools said the attack compromised a student information system used for attendance and contacting families. While the incident came as surrounding Bernalillo County continues its recovery from a ransomware attack, the FBI said the two attacks do not appear to be related. Benjamin Freed explains at StateScoop.


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