The US is following through on promises of retaliation against Russia for its alleged involvement in the SolarWinds cyberattack. The AP reports that President Biden has expelled 10 Russian diplomats from Washington, DC, including members of intelligence services, in response to actions that include the SolarWinds hack. The White House also imposed sanctions on 32 “entities and individuals” as an answer to reported 2020 election interference attempts.
Biden formally blamed the Russia-backed cyberattack group Cozy Bear (aka APT29) as the culprit behind the SolarWinds breach. The FBI, NSA and CISA also issued a joint cybersecurity advisory warning of vulnerabilities Russian intelligence used to compromise networks. The Treasury Department, meanwhile, declared that six Russian technology companies were involved in creating the tools to enable “malicious cyber activities.”
The actions also encompass a number of non-technology concerns, such as bounties on US soldiers in Afghanistan, Russia’s ongoing actions in Crimea and the attempts to silence Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny.