GCHQ, Cheltenham
GCHQ, Cheltenham

The head of the UK GCHQ's National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) on Wednesday accused Russia of staging attacks on critical infrastructure and other sectors within the past year.

The accusation, from Ciaran Martin, executive director of the NCSC, confirmed a previous statement made by Prime Minister Theresa May on Monday, when she blamed Russia for a coordinated series of cyberattacks aimed at undermining election systems and conducting cyberespionage.

“I can't get into too much of the details of intelligence matters, but I can confirm that Russian interference, seen by the National Cyber Security Centre, has included attacks on the UK media, telecommunications, and energy sectors,” Martin said during a speech at the The [London] Times Tech Summit.

The Times of London said one such attack aimed saw 45,000 messages posted on Russian-operated Twitter accounts during last year's referendum that attempted to sway the vote.