Russian Federation denies involvement in alleged hacking of COVID-19 vaccine research

U.S., allies say Russian hackers targeting coronavirus research, vaccine development

Russian hackers targeted Canada, U.S., U.K., COVID-19 vaccine research

Russian Federation denied any involvement in hacking coronavirus vaccine research.

Raab said Sunday that Britain will work with its allies to call Russian Federation out on its "reprehensible behavior" and make sure research organizations know "so that they can better defend against it".

Kelin told the BBC that the allegations made "no sense".

Both accusations came even before the publication in the coming days of a long-awaited British parliamentary report into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 Brexit vote. Security agencies in the US and Canada later issued their own statements backing up the findings.

The three nations believe the goal of the Russian attacks is to steal intellectual property so that Moscow can develop a coronavirus vaccine first or at least at the same time as the US, UK and Canada.

The pharmaceutical company noted that the vaccine is now undergoing research, which should determine how well it protects against coronavirus, and estimate its safety and immune response in humans.

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On Thursday, UK security services said hackers targeting vaccine developers "almost certainly" operated as "part of Russian intelligence services".

It remains unclear whether the attempts were successful in stealing any information.

Last Thursday, Raab said, "It is completely unacceptable that the Russian Intelligence Services are targeting those working to combat the coronavirus pandemic".

In a joint statement, the governments of all three countries said the hacking operation started in February and has been unrelenting since.

"The group uses a variety of tools and techniques to predominantly target governmental, diplomatic, think-tank, healthcare and energy targets for intelligence gain", according to the U.K.'s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC).

Meanwhile Lisa Nandy, the shadow foreign secretary, said that Labour "got it wrong" on Russian Federation when it "prevaricated" after the 2018 Salisbury attack.

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In an interview with the Financial Times newspaper Kirill Dmitriev, chief executive of the state-run Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), dismissed the allegations as "unsubstantiated and frankly, strange".

The group APT 29, also known as Cozy Bear and the Dukes, also targeted organizations in the United States and the United Kingdom, the statement said.

Ms Nandy said: "By prevaricating about issues like Salisbury, we let the Tories off the hook".

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Cyber Command also released technical information on Thursday. However, they will be working out with their allies to "call out those who seek to do us harm in cyberspace and hold them accountable".

Russian Federation was in talks with Saudi Arabia on being a trial site as well as a manufacturing partner, he told a separate news conference.

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