EU should class cyber attacks as terrorism

Estonia will propose at a meeting of European Union justice ministers next week that the bloc consider cyber attacks as “acts of terror”, Estonian Justice Minister Rein Lang said on Thursday.

"We’re inclined to view such things as acts of terror, just as the Americans view them now," Lang told a press conference.

"I predict a fairly interesting discussion on this" at the meeting of justice ministers on Wednesday, he added.

At the same news conference, Prime Minister Andrus Ansip reiterated accusations that computers in Kremlin had carried out a number of the cyber attacks launched on Estonian institutions after a row with Russia at the end of April over the removal of a Soviet war memorial from the centre of Tallinn.

He and Lang added that the attacks were well organised and, regardless of whether the Kremlin had knowledge of them, were a serious breach of security.

"These attacks came directly from the IP address of the (Russian) president’s office," Ansip told reporters.

Lang said: "If the computers (in the Kremlin) were used unintentionally, then that means there are computers in the Russian administration which may be used for criminal attacks."

"It’s clear the attacks were an organised offensive against the information systems of the Estonian state structures and against the infrastructure of the state in general," he said.

Moscow has denied any involvement in the massive cyber attacks against Estonia, which forced the authorities here to temporarily bar access to official state websites. Some of the attacks also targetted private interests such as banks.

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EU should class cyber attacks as terrorism