BLAMING RUSSIANS FOR CYBER ATTACKS now seems the default for the Western world, with the UK and Australia fingering the Kremlin's military intelligence for being behind four major hacks.
One-time NHS botherer turned UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said that Russia's GRU intelligence agency was been behind "indiscriminate and reckless" cyber attacks against a suite of targets going from media and TV firms to political institutions and sports organisations.
Hunt's opinion comes from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), which claims to have identified the cyber actors - think hackers, not digital thespians - as members of GRU and claims they been merrily hacking targets around the world.
"These attacks have been conducted in flagrant violation of international law, have affected citizens in a large number of countries, including Russia, and have cost national economies millions of pounds," the NCSC said.
"Cyber attacks orchestrated by the GRU have attempted to undermine international sporting institution WADA, disrupt transport systems in Ukraine, and destabilise democracies and target businesses."
Hunt didn't mince his words either, basically branding the Russkies as cyber trolls: "These cyber attacks serve no legitimate national security interest, instead impacting the ability of people around the world to go about their daily lives free from interference, and even their ability to enjoy sport."
"This pattern of behaviour demonstrates their desire to operate without regard to international law or established norms and to do so with a feeling of impunity and without consequences.
"Our message is clear: together with our allies, we will expose and respond to the GRU's attempts to undermine international stability."
The Aussies also got in on the action, presumably taking a break from mild racism, BBQs and removing snakes from things.
"By embarking on a pattern of malicious cyber behaviour, Russia has shown a total disregard for the agreements it helped to negotiate," said Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Foreign Affairs Minister Marise Payne, we imagine in this accent.
Given Russia has been blamed for previous cyber attacks, the standard pattern here is that the Kremlin will deny all involvement and ask for evidence that the UK cyber folks will not supply, leaving a semi-deadlock until someone throws blame at poor Eugene Kaspersky and his cyber security firm for simply being a Russian company.
In the meantime. North Korea will breath a sigh of relief that its cyber army isn't being blamed for the latest hack attack, before going back to coding ransomware.
Still, we can't blame Hunt and pals for some blame throwing at Russia as it's rather fun to do.
Stubbed your toe? Damn you Putin! Spilt some milk? Bloody Cossacks! Rainy looking day? Screw you Russia. Dropped an ice cream? µ
Please note: The INQUIRER hates and ridicules all nations equally, with the exception of Iceland because that's where we've parked the mothership.
Also, my mate said your mate told me to tell you they fancy your mate's mate
'Uninstall trackers' are apparently a dev tool ripe for abuse
Did someone say 'lawsuit'?
Don't expect many surprises at next week's launch