SolarWinds falls victim to "highly sophisticated" cyber attack
US Treasury and Commerce employees were advised to "immediately disconnect" from the affected SolarWinds Orion products
The company announced that its systems had fallen victim to “a highly sophisticated, manual supply chain attack” which “was likely conducted by an outside nation state and intended to be a narrow, extremely targeted, and manually executed attack, as opposed to a broad, system-wide attack”.
SolarWinds advised users to upgrade to the latest version of its Orion Platform, version 2020.2.1 HF 1, which is available to download from the SolarWinds Customer Portal.
“We are working to investigate the impacts of this incident and will continue to update you as we are made aware of any interruptions or impact to your business specifically,” the company said in a statement.
On Sunday, the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) warned that the attack “poses an unacceptable risk to [the] Federal Civilian Executive Branch” and asked employees of the governmental departments to “immediately disconnect or power down” the affected SolarWinds Orion products.
The inevitable ascent of zero trust
Ensure user activities are trustworthy without interrupting workflowDownload now
According to the federal agency, unidentified malicious actors managed to exploit SolarWinds’ Orion products, affecting the 2019.4 through 2020.2.1 HF1 versions.
Although the attack is believed to have been orchestrated by the Russian government, the Embassy of Russia in the USA strongly denied its involvement.
In a Facebook post, it stated that “malicious activities in the information space contradicts the principles of the Russian foreign policy, national interests and our understanding of interstate relations”.
“Russia does not conduct offensive operations in the cyber domain,” it added.
The company, which is often used by governments to fend off state-sponsored attacks, said that a "highly sophisticated state-sponsored adversary" had breached its systems and made off with advanced penetration tools. FireEye has since confirmed that the SolarWinds supply chain attack is how hackers gained access to its network.
"We have identified a global campaign that introduces a compromise into the networks of public and private organisations through the software supply chain," FireEye said in a blog post on Sunday.
"This compromise is delivered through updates to a widely-used IT infrastructure management software—the Orion network monitoring product from SolarWinds. The campaign demonstrates top-tier operational tradecraft and resourcing consistent with state-sponsored threat actors."
Virtual desktops and apps for dummies
An easy guide to virtual desktop infrastructure, end-user computing, and moreDownload now
The total economic impact of optimising and managing your hybrid multi-cloud
Cost savings and business benefits of accelerating the cloud journeyDownload now
A buyer’s guide for cloud-based phone solutions
Finding the right phone system for your modern businessDownload now
What’s next for the education sector?
A new learning experienceDownload now