International Criminal Court (ICC) Confirms Cybersecurity Incident

The International Criminal Court (ICC), which tries suspects of war crimes and crimes against humanity, confirmed the breach in a brief tweet on Twitter.

According to the organization, suspicious activity was noted last week, but it refrained from sharing details on this security breach.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has confirmed that its IT network’s security was breached last week. It is suspected that the breach might have exposed details of current ICC cases and classified details on witnesses. Many potential suspects can benefit from the information.

The war crime tribunal, headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands, posted a brief statement on X, explaining that unusual, suspicious activity was detected in its information systems, and the organization immediately launched efforts to respond to this “cybersecurity incident” in order to mitigate its impact.

The post also read that the ICC has deployed “additional response and security measures” in cooperation with its host country’s relevant authorities. It aims to strengthen its cybersecurity mechanisms, such as focusing more on incorporating cloud-based technologies. The ICC sought support from all stakeholders and member states to help enhance its institutional resilience amidst “challenging circumstances.”

Reuters reported that currently, ICC prosecutors are investigating seventeen cases in Afghanistan, the Philippines, Uganda, Ukraine, and Venezuela. The ICC shocked everyone back in March 2023 when it issued an arrest warrant for Russian Premier Vladimir Putin. He could not participate in several international conferences, including the Brics summit held recently in Johannesburg, to avoid arrest by ICC member states.

There’s an indication that the ICC has remained on the radar of cybercriminals and state-sponsored spies. In June 2022, a Russian spy, identified as Sergey Vladimirovich Cherkasov, was exposed by Dutch intelligence officials.

According to the Department of Justice (DoJ), Cherkasov posed as a Brazilian intern and was trying to access the ICC’s network while, in reality, he was planted by the Russian military intelligence service, the GRU. The current incident further strengthens the suspicion that ICC is being targeted. Therefore, the organization should improve its IT infrastructure to prevent such attacks.

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