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The Federal Security Service (FSB) said in a statement on Friday that foreign spy agencies had plotted to sow chaos in Russia’s banking system via a coordinated wave of cyber attacks and fake social media comments about the imminent collapse of major national and provincial banks in several Russian cities.
It said the attacks, meant to start on December 5, would originate from computer servers in the Netherlands owned by a Ukrainian web hosting company called BlazingFast.
“It was planned that the cyber attack would be accompanied by a mass send-out of SMS messages and publications in social media of a provocative nature regarding a crisis in the Russian banking system, bankruptcies and license withdrawals,” it said.
The FSB said that it was taking “the necessary measures to neutralize threats to Russia’s economic and information security.”
The FSB did not mention which countries’ intelligence agencies were behind the alleged plot.
Russia’s central bank said it was aware of the threat and was in constant contact with the security services, adding it had drawn up a plan to thwart any attack.
“The situation is under control. Banks have been given necessary guidance,” the central bank said.
Russia has been on high alert for foreign-inspired cyber attacks since US officials accused the Kremlin of using cyber attacks to interfere with its election, accusations Moscow denied.

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