Biden warns Putin on ransomware attack from Russia

Washington, Jul 10: US President Joe Biden has warned Russia of consequences for the ransomware attacks emanating from the country, underscoring  the need for Moscow to take action against groups engaged in the crime.

Biden spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday about the ongoing ransomware attacks by criminals based in Russia that have impacted the US and other countries around the world, the White House said in a readout of the call.

“Yes,” Biden told reporters at the White House hours after his call with Putin on this issue when asked if there would be consequences to the ransomware attack.

“I made it very clear to him that the United States expects, when a ransomware operation is coming from his soil, even though it’s not sponsored by the state, we expect them to act if we give them enough information to act on who that is,” he said.

“And, secondly, that we have set up a means of communications now, on a regular basis, to be able to communicate to one another when each of us thinks something is happening in another country that affects the home country,” Biden said.

During the call, the White House said, Biden underscored the need for Russia to take action to disrupt ransomware groups operating in Russia and emphasised that he is committed to continued engagement on the broader threat posed by ransomware.

During the call, Biden reiterated that the United States will take any necessary action to defend its people and its critical infrastructure in the face of this continuing challenge.

“The President has also called on governments and agencies to modernise their defences to meet this threat, building on the President’s executive order on cybersecurity that was released in May,” a senior administration official told reporters.

“I want to say a few other things about this: The President really meant what he said just after concluding the summit meeting in Geneva, when he said that our assessment of this process and our evaluation of Russia’s actions would take time and play out over time. The President said six months or more,” the official said.

“This is more than just a conversation that’s taking place between the two leaders, President Biden and President Putin. This is really about our own resilience, as a nation, in the face of these attacks, and strengthening that. That’s what the cybersecurity executive order was largely about,” said the senior administration official. (PTI)