International News

Britain, US accuse Russia of ‘malicious cyber activity’

They blamed Moscow for launching attacks on routers, firewalls and other networking equipment used by government agencies.

The United States and United Kingdom on Monday issued a joint technical alert, warning the world of “malicious cyber activity” by Russia, AFP reported.

“The targets of this malicious cyber activity are primarily government and private-sector organisations, critical infrastructure providers and the Internet Service Providers supporting these sectors,” the joint statement read. The alert was issued by UK’s National Cyber Security Centre, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Homeland Security.

Britain and the US accused Moscow of launching cyber attacks on routers, firewalls and other networking equipment used by government agencies, businesses and critical infrastructure operators around the globe, according to Reuters. They warned everyone – from internet service providers to home office customers – to heed the warning.

“When we see malicious cyber activity, whether it be from the Kremlin or other malicious nation-state actors, we are going to push back,” said Rob Joyce, the White House cyber security coordinator, told Reuters. “Russia-sponsored actors are using compromised routers to conduct spoofing ‘man-in-the-middle’ attacks to support espionage, extract intellectual property, maintain persistent access to victim networks and potentially lay a foundation for future offensive operations,” the UK and US warned.

Australia too joined the UK and the US in publicly blaming Russia for a “malicious global cyber attack last year,” reported The Guardian. However, it is not a signatory of the joint technical alert.

“Based on advice from Australian intelligence agencies, and in consultation with our allies, the Australian government has determined that Russian state-sponsored actors are responsible for this [global cyber attack] activity, which occurred in 2017,” said Minister for Law Enforcement and Cyber Security Angus Taylor.

The joint statement comes even as relations between the US and UK and Moscow have worsened after Washington, London and France conducted airstrikes targeting alleged chemical weapons facilities in Syria, in retaliation to a suspected chemical attack in Douma, which they blamed on the Syrian government. Russia is a key ally of the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria.

Support our journalism by subscribing to Scroll+ here. We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

Following a mountaineer as he reaches the summit of Mount Everest

Accounts from Vikas Dimri’s second attempt reveal the immense fortitude and strength needed to summit the Everest.

Vikas Dimri made a huge attempt last year to climb the Mount Everest. Fate had other plans. Thwarted by unfavourable weather at the last minute, he came so close and yet not close enough to say he was at the top. But that did not deter him. Vikas is back on the Everest trail now, and this time he’s sharing his experiences at every leg of the journey.

The Everest journey began from the Lukla airport, known for its dicey landing conditions. It reminded him of the failed expedition, but he still moved on to Namche Bazaar - the staging point for Everest expeditions - with a positive mind. Vikas let the wisdom of the mountains guide him as he battled doubt and memories of the previous expedition. In his words, the Everest taught him that, “To conquer our personal Everest, we need to drop all our unnecessary baggage, be it physical or mental or even emotional”.

Vikas used a ‘descent for ascent’ approach to acclimatise. In this approach, mountaineers gain altitude during the day, but descend to catch some sleep. Acclimatising to such high altitudes is crucial as the lack of adequate oxygen can cause dizziness, nausea, headache and even muscle death. As Vikas prepared to scale the riskiest part of the climb - the unstable and continuously melting Khumbhu ice fall - he pondered over his journey so far.

His brother’s diagnosis of a heart condition in his youth was a wakeup call for the rather sedentary Vikas, and that is when he started focusing on his health more. For the first time in his life, he began to appreciate the power of nutrition and experimented with different diets and supplements for their health benefits. His quest for better health also motivated him to take up hiking, marathon running, squash and, eventually, a summit of the Everest.

Back in the Himalayas, after a string of sleepless nights, Vikas and his team ascended to Camp 2 (6,500m) as planned, and then descended to Base Camp for the basic luxuries - hot shower, hot lunch and essential supplements. Back up at Camp 2, the weather played spoiler again as a jet stream - a fast-flowing, narrow air current - moved right over the mountain. Wisdom from the mountains helped Vikas maintain perspective as they were required to descend 15km to Pheriche Valley. He accepted that “strength lies not merely in chasing the big dream, but also in...accepting that things could go wrong.”

At Camp 4 (8,000m), famously known as the death zone, Vikas caught a clear glimpse of the summit – his dream standing rather tall in front of him.

It was the 18th of May 2018 and Vikas finally reached the top. The top of his Everest…the top of Mount Everest!

Watch the video below to see actual moments from Vikas’ climb.

Play

Vikas credits his strength to dedication, exercise and a healthy diet. He credits dietary supplements for helping him sustain himself in the inhuman conditions on Mount Everest. On heights like these where the oxygen supply drops to 1/3rd the levels on the ground, the body requires 3 times the regular blood volume to pump the requisite amount of oxygen. He, thus, doesn’t embark on an expedition without double checking his supplements and uses Livogen as an aid to maintain adequate amounts of iron in his blood.

Livogen is proud to have supported Vikas Dimri on his ambitious quest and salutes his spirit. To read more about the benefits of iron, see here. To read Vikas Dimri’s account of his expedition, click here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Livogen and not by the Scroll editorial team.