18:15 GMT03 July 2020
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    The Spanish National Intelligence Center told Sputnik that the hacker attacks on the Spanish government websites during the height of the Catalan crisis hadn't been authorized by any foreign government, including the Russian authorities.

    MADRID (Sputnik) – The Spanish National Cryptologic Center with the country’s National Intelligence Center has recorded 70 cyberattacks on governmental resources, performed by hackers part of various groups within the so-called Anonymous network.

    "The research has shown that these have been low-level attacks, which have been discussed on various forums on social media, related to hackers groups, in various EU countries and outside the bloc. All these actions by no means have been connected with cyberattacks, authorized by governments," the center said on Tuesday.

    The attacks have been performed by individuals and groups, which have been using IP addresses, associated with certain countries, but not related to governments, the authority noted.

    On Tuesday, Luis Jimenez, heads of the Spanish National Cryptologic Centre, and Javier Candau, the authority’s cybersecurity department chief, represented a report, saying that out of 70 hacker attacks on the governmental online resources, only two had represented certain threat. The two attacks were aimed at steeling information, however, they had not been successful. One of the attacks targeted the Spanish Constitutional Court, it has lasted for 30 minutes.

    In 2017, almost 27,000 cyberattacks targeted the Spanish governmental institutions and strategic organizations. Only 5 percent of these attack have represented serious danger, the report also showed, noting that around 3.7 hacker attacks have been performed daily.

    The Catalonia crisis has erupted over the October 1 independence referendum in the Spanish autonomous community, which subsequently led to Madrid invoking Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution, introducing direct rule by the Spanish central authorities in Catalonia, and disolving the regional parliament. The move has not been recognized by ex-Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont.

    A number of Spanish media sources, including El Pais newspaper, have published a set of articles about the Russian media's allegedly biased coverage of the situation in Catalonia and about support of separatists by "Russian hackers." The Russian Embassy in Spain has criticized Spanish media outlets for spreading rumors about an alleged "Russian hand" in the situation in Catalonia.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin, as well as other officials, has repeatedly said that Moscow considers the Catalan crisis a Spanish domestic issue which should be resolved in line with the country’s constitution.


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