USA Today reports: A senior Russian intelligence officer and cybersecurity investigator arrested last month on treason charges allegedly was passing information to U.S. intelligence services, according to Russian media outlets.
Sergei Mikhailov, who worked for the FSB, the successor to the KGB, was arrested in December, along with Ruslan Stoyanov, a top manager for Russia’s largest cybersecurity firm, according to the economic newspaper Kommersant. Stoyanov was also charged with suspicion of treason.
In addition, two other people, including Major Dmitry Dokuchaev, also an FSB officer, were arrested in connection with the case, according to Russia’s REN-TV. The fourth person was not identified.
Stoyanov allegedly developed a program introduced into a prominent bank’s computer system to gather privileged information on customers, REN-TV reports. That information, it reports, was then sold to the West.
In another twist, Russian media says the FSB believes Mikhailov tipped U.S. intelligence about Vladimir Fomenko and his server rental company “King Servers.” The U.S. cybersecurity company Threat Connect identified King Servers last year as an “information nexus” used by hackers suspected of working for Russian intelligence in cyberattacks on electoral systems in Arizona and Illinois.
The Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta says Mikhailov was arrested during an FSB meeting in early December when officers came into the room, put a bag over his head and took him away.
The cause of the arrests was not clear. The newspaper said only that the FSB discovered Mikhailov’s alleged involvement in the purported plot after the U.S. accused King Servers of the cyberattacks on the U.S. [Continue reading…]