The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is warning that Russia may pursue a cyberattack against the U.S. as tensions escalate over Moscow’s buildup of forces near the border with Ukraine, according to multiple reports.
The DHS bulletin, dated Sunday, outlined that Russia could launch such an attack if it perceived any U.S. or NATO response to be a threat to its own national security.
“We assess that Russia would consider initiating a cyber attack against the Homeland if it perceived a US or NATO response to a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine threatened its long-term national security,” the agency said in the bulletin released to law enforcement partners, ABC News reported.
Russia has a number of cyber tools it could use to attack the U.S., ranging from “low-level denials-of-service to destructive attacks targeting critical infrastructure.”
The Hill has reached out to DHS for more information.
Administration officials have pinned both the Colonial Pipeline attack, which shut down the flow of oil, as well as the attack on meat supplier JBS on attackers based in Russia.
The Sunday bulletin noted Russian military assets have also launched attacks in Ukraine, pointing to attacks on the former Soviet state’s power grid in both 2015 and 2016.
“We assess that Russia’s threshold for conducting disruptive or destructive cyber attacks in the Homeland probably remains very high and we have not observed Moscow directly employ these types of cyber attacks against US critical infrastructure—notwithstanding cyber espionage and potential prepositioning operations in the past,” the bulletin said.