United Kingdom and U.S. accuse Russian Federation of cyber attack that compromised global networks

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Millions of devices belonging to government offices, internet service providers and critical infrastructure operators were affected, the statement continued.

Russian Federation is using compromised computer-network equipment to attack USA and British companies and government agencies, the two countries warned in an unprecedented joint alert.

The goal of the announcement Monday was to warn corporations and individuals to protect themselves against attacks.

The FBI has "high confidence" that the hackers are using the compromised networks to spy, steal intellectual property and "potentially lay a foundation for future offensive operations".

In November 2016 they saw Russian cyber actors scanning a basic Internet protocol for finding devices that are on Internet networks, looking for vulnerable infrastructure devices such as routers that could be easily hacked.

The imminent attack was not, however, linked to allied nations' missile strikes on Saturday in Syria, Britain's Press Association (PA) news agency reported, citing White House cybersecurity coordinator Rob Joyce.

But the United Kingdom and USA remain steadfast in their accusations, with the UK'S National Cyber Security Centre alleging that one of Russia's motives was to "potentially lay a foundation for future offensive operations" and that multiple sources support the accusations against Russian Federation.

These network devices make "ideal targets", said Manfra, Homeland Security's assistant secretary for cybersecurity and communications.

Howard Marshall, who works in the FBI's cyber-division and who was on the conference call, said: "We will bring every tool to bear against them in every corner of cyberspace".

Russian Federation gets ready for large-scale cyber attacks.

The alert is not related to the suspected chemical weapons attack in a town in Syria that prompted a USA -led military strike over the weekend targeting facilities of the Russian-backed Syrian government, Joyce said.

"This is a global threat", Manfra said.

Martin said authorities have been tracking the campaign for about a year and the tactics behind them for longer.

United States and British officials said the infected routers could be used to launch future offensive cyber operations.

U.S. officials said this year that Russian military hackers compromised routers in South Korea in January and deployed new malware when the Olympics began in February.

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