Germany may seek to impose sanctions on Russia, rather than trying the hacker.
A cyber hacker named Badin is the fuel of a cybersecurity struggle between Russia and Germany.
Germany filed for the arrest of a Russian hacker named Dmitriy Sergeyevich Badin back in May. This arrest was related to the breach of German documents and the installment of malware in 2015. Prosecutors stated that Badin was a part of the hacking crew named APT28 ((Fancy Bear, Sofacy, Strontium, Grizzly Steppe); which infiltrated the German parliament (Bundestag). The Russian ambassador was informed about the arrest.
The Russian officials said that the German authorities had not presented any evidence to back up the claims and arrest until date.
The arrested individual is a member of Unit 26165, a unit part of the Russian Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU); the military intelligence agency of Russia’s armed forces. He is believed to be connected to APT28 hackers.
In an interview session with RIA, a Russian news agency,on Thursday. Vladimir Titov (Russia’s first Deputy Foreign Minister), said, “more than a month after Germany filed the Badin arrest warrant, German officials did not provide any evidence of Badin’s involvement in the hack, needed to support an extradition request.”
While supporting the statements made by the Russian officials, Cyber Defence Researcher at the Center for Security Studies at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich, Stefan Soesanto told ZDNet; “Lavrov is correct in stating that the German MFA has not shared the arrest warrant for Badin with the Russian ambassador. There has also been no formal extradition request by the Germans for Badin”. He also said, “overall, the positions are pretty clear, Moscow will never extradite Badin – as it would violate Russia’s constitution (article 61), and Berlin is eager to push EU cyber sanctions rather than having Badin in a German court talking about how bad the IT security in Bundestag was”. He also pointed out that German officials might not have proof to convict Badin in a German court.
Despite also being charged in the US, there has been no clear indication or evidence of Badin’s guilt. His strategic position gives him an edge. “Under international treaties and in the eyes of international law, Badin is an intelligence operative; which excludes him from legal prosecution for their actions, as long as they’re acting at the behest of their state, and acting under orders.”
It seems like Germany is following the method used by the US. When the US couldn’t prove Badin’s involvement, they instead imposed an array of sanctions on Russian. The Germans seem to be replicating this technique.