The UK parliamentary emails have been compromised over the weekend in a “sustained and determined cyber attack” with over 90 email accounts affected.
British security services suspect that another state was behind the cyber-attack, with the Russian government being the top of their list of suspects. Other potential suspects include North Korea, China and Iran.
The breach has raised concerns that potential blackmail attempts could occur, meaning that officials were forced to lock MPs out of their email accounts as they tried to minimise damage.
The affected network includes the prime minister, Theresa May, including her cabinet ministers.
A parliamentary spokesperson said:
“We have discovered unauthorised attempts to access accounts of parliamentary networks users and are investigating this ongoing incident, working closely with the National Cyber Security Centre.
Parliament has robust measures in place to protect all of our accounts and systems, and we are taking the necessary steps to protect and secure our network.
As a precaution, we have temporarily restricted remote access to the network.
As a result, some Members of Parliament and staff cannot access their email accounts outside of Westminster.
IT services on the Parliamentary Estate are working normally.
We will continue to keep Members of both Houses of Parliament and the public updated as the situation develops.”
According to the Guardian,, An NCSC spokesperson said: “The NCSC is aware of the incident and is working around the clock with the UK parliamentary digital security team to understand what has happened and advise on the necessary mitigating actions.”
Britain’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) played a key role in the investigation of the WannaCry malware that affected organisations across the world, including the NHS in May. Working with America’s National Security Agency (NSA) they have concluded that North Korean hackers were most likely to be the culprits.
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