Russian cybercriminals, largely backed by the Russian government, have growing coordination as their attacks victimize the United States, UK, and Western European nations. The Energetic Bear, APT28 and Uroburous - three Russian-based malware families - are being used to conduct cyberespionage, rather than conduct data theft purely for financial gain.
Although Russian-based cybercrime targeting businesses gets most of the attention, threats of cyberespionage remain more problematic. Each new discovered exploit and toolkit reveals significant sophistication, as cybercriminals are able to rack up victims in a stealthy manner - often being discovered long after breaching targets, if at all.
"China has economic objectives," said Christopher Ahlberg, co-founder and CEO of Recorded Future. "Russia wants to show the world they are strong politically. Energy is incredibly important to them [as well]... They also want to sell gas to Western Europe - there's more of a focus on commodity markets and geopolitical [interests."