Sunday, July 3

Putin skips the red line that the US president has set for him.


Washington Correspondent

Updated:

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Joe Biden he drew a red line to Vladimir Putin in the meeting that both leaders had last month in Switzerland: he would not accept more blackmail attacks by ‘hackers’ (digital pirates) based in Russia against North American companies, after several blows of that nature seriously affected the supply of gasoline and meat in part of the US.

Well, now the White House is facing another digital attack, this time against a commercial software firm, which has affected numerous chain stores in various parts of the world. And all the clues point to Russia. But this time, Biden has decided, for now, to turn a blind eye.

The last attack, against software firm Kaseya, which is based in Miami, affects up to 1,500 companies that use it around the world. Many businesses, which depend on these programs to function, have had to close.

Emergency meeting

Biden met Wednesday with Vice President Kamala Harris and his top national security advisers to discuss the problem. The only formal reaction of the Executive since then is a statement from the National Security Council of the White House in which he admits that ending these attacks known as ‘ransomware’ is going to be very complicated. “No strategy is going to work on its own, and only by collaborating with our partners will we significantly address the threat,” the statement said. ‘Ransomware’ means that a program takes control of the infecting system or device, and demands a payment to return control to its owner.

What the White House is saying privately is that the federal government is helping big business to strengthen your cybersecurity, that he has put obstacles in the way to collect that blackmail and that even last month he recovered most of a multimillion-dollar payment made to Russian criminals by a gas pipeline company.

The White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, He said Tuesday that a group of emissaries from Russia and the US will meet next week and discuss the matter.

For now, the White House is reluctant to respond directly to Russia. The truth is that the US lacks evidence that these ‘hackers’ are supported or financed by the Russian government. At best, the only obvious thing at the moment is that the Kremlin turns a blind eye to these attacks, as it has done with another type of digital fraud that is planned and perpetrated for a long time from within its borders.

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