Russia May be Considering a Cyberattack on US Homeland


According to a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) intelligence bulletin, Russia may contemplate launching a cyberattack on the US homeland if it believes that a US or NATO reaction to a hypothetical Russian invasion of Ukraine would jeopardize Russia’s long-term national security.

According to the document, DHS analysts believe Moscow’s threshold for executing disruptive or damaging cyberattacks on the US homeland is likely to remain quite high. “We have not observed Moscow directly employ these types of cyberattacks against U.S. critical infrastructure, notwithstanding cyberespionage and potential prepositioning operations in the past.”

Officials in the United States have been prepared for retaliatory cyberattacks from Russia, which has vowed to invade Ukraine by assembling 100,000 troops along the Ukrainian border. The Treasury Department held a confidential briefing for large U.S. banks on the topic, and the Energy Department informed America’s largest electric companies on Russian cyber operations.

Last week, Ukraine was rocked by a suspected Russian cyberattack that sent a warning to “be afraid and expect the worst” across government websites, while Russia posted images of more of its military on the move.

The Biden administration has promised to retaliate with penalties that would severely harm Russia’s economy, raising concerns about possible cyberattacks on the United States.

Sanctions, indicting hackers, and expelling Moscow’s diplomats for previous cyberespionage activities, according to intelligence leaders, have failed to deter Russian cyberespionage operations or criminal extortion threats.