back to article Russian! spies! 'brains! behind!' Yahoo! mega-hack! – four! charged!

Two Russian spies and two hackers were the miscreants who broke into Yahoo!'s servers and swiped at least 500 million user account records. That's according to the US Department of Justice, which today indicted [PDF] four men – including two senior officers in the FSB, the Russian Federal Security Service born from the Soviet- …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seems to me that the DoJ doesn't really have a clue who it was but just for the sake of it, they blame the Russians.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      DoJ doesn't really have a clue who it was but just for the sake of it, they blame the Russians.


      El Reg commentards leaking DoJ strategy. SAD.


      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Nice! You got it backwards!

        The motive of the orange pres is to direct blame AWAY from his Russian masters, not TOWARDS them, stupid. In this case a Trump fan would say; "no, it's not those friendly Russians who are great people and family oriented! It must have been some kids in a basement!" And be sure and say it often and LOUDLY into your Samsung S3 so, yes yes, your Russian masters and the NSA can hear you clearly!

        Get with the program! Heed your masters. And no one gets hurt. Comprede vu?

    2. Youngone Silver badge

      It seems to me the US security (and military) services have a desperate need for a bogeyman, and since the Soviet Union collapsed they have been casting about for a new one.

      Russia makes a good one, because of history.

      If Donald makes nice with the Russians, how will he be able to justify the bloated military budgets?

      Blame China I suppose, which is a worry.

      1. veti Silver badge

        The reason the Russians get blamed for a lot of hacking is, because they do a lot of hacking.

        And trolling. At both hacking and trolling, they are far, far more active than the Chinese, Norks or any other bogey-group you care to name, except possibly "American nerds", and they don't count because they're doing it individually/independently, without co-ordination.

        If you seriously, honestly doubt that, I've got an internet to sell you.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Who IS this person who apparently knows EVERYTHING???

          "If you seriously, honestly doubt that, I've got an internet to sell you".

          I do seriously, honestly doubt that. Partly because I have no idea who you are, and how you are privy to the inmost secrets of "the Russians" and "the Chinese".

          Your contention seems to be that all the foreigners - and especially "the Russians" and "the Chinese" - are working for their governments in heavily-funded, highly-coordinated state attempts to harm America.

          Whereas the American hackers who seem to form the majority of dangerous black hats are OK, because they are doing it individually in a spirit of carefree enterprise. It's not as if any of them worked for the NSA or the CIA or any of the rest of the alphabet soup.

          And by the way, I don't want to buy "an internet" from you. Because, of course, there is by definition only one Internet, and I am already using it.

    3. Tom 64
      Paris Hilton

      The stooge of my enemy is my stooge.

    4. tr1ck5t3r

      Fake news, fake evidence, when will you lot wise up to the truth?

      1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      I have to agree with you. Even the article does this: "Russians behind the hack", yet last time I checked charging or accusing someone of a felony doesn't automatically mean they also actually did it. You got to prove this too, in a court of law. Only after the judge has ruled can you conclude that someone was guilty or not.

  2. Crazy Operations Guy

    "Russian Federal Security Service"

    Surely you mean Federal Security Bureau, not Service...

    1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      Re: "Russian Federal Security Service"

      Nope – Federal Security Service, from the horse's mouth.

      Pedantry – Близо́к локото́к, да не уку́сишь.


      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Russian Federal Security Service"

        They have talking horses ?!?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "Russian Federal Security Service"

          Talking horses - that's nothing! In Soviet times there was a joke about an old peasant who visits the big city for the first time. He goes to the zoo and marvels at all the strange creatures. When he comes to the giraffe, he stands in amazement for a long time, just staring at it. Then he exclaims, "My God - just look what those Bolsheviks have done to our horses!"

        2. BillG

          Re: "Russian Federal Security Service"

          They have talking horses ?!?

          Of course, of course!

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Russian Federal Security Service"

        Thanks I just clicked that link and got Donald Trumps tax return.

      3. Captain DaFt

        Re: "Russian Federal Security Service"

        Meanwhile, In Russia:

        "Why is the FSS suddenly getting so much traffic from the UK?"

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Russian Federal Security Service"

        The real problem with copying and pasting from the internet is that it leaves the stress marks on the Cyrillic letters...

  3. Crazy Operations Guy

    "spy on ... and computer security professionals, we're told."

    If a security professional uses Yahoo enough that it'd be an effective method of spying, I wouldn't call them a security researcher... Yeah, I can understand using a free email service, but one that has been hacked time and time again?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "spy on ... and computer security professionals, we're told."

      My exact thought.

      Security professionals? Yahoo? This is the biggest load of bull ever. Could they invent something better for a change?

      As far as government officials using Yahoo. Well, can we have the full list of fu*kers who have violated their respective countries' official records act to start nailing them one by one. With BIG RUSTY NAILS.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "spy on ... and computer security professionals, we're told."

        But you can easily see the underlying logic. They really aren't even trying to fool people like the Reg readers (let alone the highly sophisticated Reg staff). 8-) 8-)

        Their aim is to persuade as many ordinary people as possible that Russia is a menace in every possible way. So, on the predetermined theme of "Russian hackers", the ideal message is that the Russians have hacked whatever the most people use and depend on. I'm slightly surprised it wasn't Facebook or Twitter, but they will probably come next.

        1. Crazy Operations Guy

          Re: "spy on ... and computer security professionals, we're told."

          "Their aim is to persuade as many ordinary people as possible that Russia is a menace in every possible way."

          Yeah, Russia doesn't need the media's help, they're doing quite alright in convincing the world they are terrible on their own.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I bet North Korea are sleeping a bit better tonight.

    Can they start blaming African or Middle East countries for a change? I'm getting a bit bored with the axis of easy.

  5. chivo243 Silver badge

    Strange timing

    Just after Yahoo! is purchased, Marissa is out. Trump is in... coinkidinkie?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Strange timing

      at least Marissa isn't the recently appointed cybersecurity specialist for the Orange White House, that's one thing ...

      1. lglethal Silver badge

        Re: Strange timing

        Give it time...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Strange timing

          Give it time...

          She needs to take more golf lessons...

  6. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

    So, did Marissa...

    ...also pay back the annual bonuses for the previous two years between the occurrence of the hack and the announcement?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Couldn't they find 1 more stooge?

    The media could have had much more fun with this...

    2 agents and 3 stooges went to a bar (a Yahoo!'s UDB) and...

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Red Notice

    "Red Notice calling for his immediate arrest and extradition to the US"

    Interpol: "It is not an international arrest warrant. INTERPOL cannot compel any member country to arrest an individual who is the subject of a Red Notice. "

    I would characterise that as "requesting his arrest", not "calling for his immediate arrest and extradition", but of course there's the obvious: what a wonderful opportunity for Mr Trump to show that his seeming friendship with Mr Putin will deliver results, such as the arrest of the subjects of this Red Notice.

  9. jgarry


    "Latvia? LATVIA??? You want us to authorize money to be sent to LATVIA????"

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    Russian spies behind Yahoo mega-hack

    Is there any evidence for this or is this story an attempt to distract from the actual hacking carried on by the NSA on US soil under the PRTT/PRISM program.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    FBI's most wanted list

    Is that like Hector Xavier Monsegur - the person the FBI most wanted to work for them?

    As in paying criminals to work for them?

    Just remind me again, who has the moral high ground? Or does it not matter anymore? Especially if you're above the law.

  12. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

    Not Convinced

    The Russian angle is going to played up as they are the default cyber boogeymen. But one should not overlook the (criminal?) incompetence of the Putrid Palace in this affair. Given that Putrid's high level PHBs were not interested make it viable concern, thus skimping on money for infrastructure and security makes this a natural outcome.

  13. Mephistro


    "Dokuchaev was arrested in December last year, and charged with high treason. He allegedly leaked files to the CIA"

    So it's either that:

    - Duchaev was really a CIA's mole and the DoJ's indictment is just a way to help him.

    - Duchaev wasn't a mole, but an "independent agent" who compromised Russian government members' accounts, and the Russians accused him of working for the CIA because the truth -that said members of the government where using Yahoo accounts, probably for not totally kosher business (wink, wink)- which would put said members of the Russian govt. in a bad light.

    - Or the "default option", i.e. that the DoJ has no effing idea of who was responsible for the hacking, but blames the Russians because they need some scapegoat.

    I'm not making any bets this time. ;-)

  14. Dan 55 Silver badge


    "The indictment unequivocally shows the attacks on Yahoo! were state-sponsored," said Chris Madsen, assistant general counsel and head of global law enforcement at Yahoo!. "And they couldn't believe their luck when they found out we had barn door security."

  15. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Can I get this sorted? It's legal for US TLAs to spy on non-US citizens but it's illegal for Russian TLAs to spy on US citizens.

    Seems fair?

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  16. wolfetone Silver badge

    The American's get really pissed off if another country hacks the data of it's own citizens.

    That's the NSA's job.

  17. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

    Sounds like everyone is lying

    Maybe it's a party game? Find a maximally consistent story that covers most statements. Win a prize. Can Russian Trolls tell us what's going on?

    Yahoo! has since said that it called in the government in 2014 when it became aware of the hacking. Around the same time, it hired security guru Alex Stamos as chief security officer, although he jumped ship to Facebook less than two years later after reportedly getting frustrated at the lack of attention Yahoo!'s senior management were giving to security.

    So Yuhuu Management becomes holistically aware, calls in the govnm't and hires a guru (doesn't one hire a gure, then become aware?), but at the next moment, Yuhuu Management becomes un-aware again and the guru leaves in frustration, but the govnm't lingers?

    "Today we continue to pierce the veil of anonymity surrounding cyber crimes," said Director Comey. "We are shrinking the world to ensure that cyber criminals think twice before targeting US persons and interests."

    Such prose from the Autogenerated Ponderous Team America Speech App (APTASA)!

  18. Gis Bun

    Baratov is waiting to be extradited to the US.

    The id10t - at 22 years old - was flaunting his new found wealth. An Austin Martin as well as 3 other expensive cars in a fairly new home. Unless you were given money [inherited], you don't get that much money at that age.

    I'm sure the house and cars will be sold off to pay for his lawyer bills in addition to Canada's taxman.

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