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Hacker attack on the German subsidiary of the Russian group Rosneft

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The German subsidiary of the Russian energy company Rosneft has become the target of a hacker attack. The Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) confirmed on Monday that Rosneft Deutschland GmbH reported an IT security incident on Saturday night. The “Spiegel” reported that activists from the Anonymous hacker group had attacked Rosneft in Germany.

According to “Spiegel”, the prosecutor’s office in Berlin initiated proceedings due to the hacker attack and commissioned the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) to conduct further investigations. According to the news magazine, the hackers had captured 20 terabytes of data.

The BSI explained that Rosneft Germany had reported the IT security incident to the Federal Office as part of its reporting obligations to KRITIS. The background is that companies in the so-called critical infrastructure, which also includes the energy sector, are required to report outages.

The BSI stated that it had issued a corresponding cyber security warning to other companies and organizations in the oil industry. The BSI cannot comment on further details of the incident at this time. So far, no effects on the supply situation are known. Investigations and analysis were still ongoing.

The incident confirms the Federal Office’s assessment of the heightened security situation in cyberspace shortly after the start of the Russian attack on Ukraine, the BSI said. At the beginning of March, the authority spoke of an “abstract growing threat to Germany”. Companies, organizations and authorities must increase their computer security measures, the authority advised.

“Spiegel” also reported about the hacker attack on the German subsidiary of Rosneft that the company had taken its systems offline for the time being, but this did not restrict the operation of oil pipelines and refineries.

According to its own statements, Rosneft Germany was responsible for around a quarter of all crude oil imports to Germany in recent years and has shares in three refineries in Germany. The managing director of the Russian parent company is Igor Sechin, a close confidant of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The chairman of the supervisory board is former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder (SPD).

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