England expresses cyber attack concerns to FIFA before World Cup 2018

England has told players, coaches and technical staff to avoid using public Wi-Fi networks over concerns sensitive personal and team information could be illegally obtained in Russia.

Published: 12th September 2017 08:30 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th September 2017 08:30 AM   |  A+A-

FIFA headquarters (File | AP)

By Associated Press

LONDON: The English Football Association is concerned about its players and coaches being hacked at the World Cup in Russia and has written to FIFA expressing concerns about information already being accessed in a cyber attack.

England has told players, coaches and technical staff to avoid using public Wi-Fi networks over concerns sensitive personal and team information could be illegally obtained in Russia, a person with knowledge of the FA's World Cup planning said. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because team security issues are private.

Emails between the FA and FIFA discussing doping cases were last month published by the Russian-linked hacking group, Fancy Bears, as part of a wider disclosure of illegally obtained information.

While the World Anti-Doping Agency has been previously breached by Fancy Bears, it is unclear which network these emails were hacked from. It prompted the FA to write to FIFA about its concerns about cyber security.

"FIFA has informed the FA in such context that FIFA remains committed to preventing security attacks in general and that with respect to the Fancy Bears attack, in particular, it is presently investigating the incident to ascertain whether FIFA's infrastructure was compromised," FIFA said on Monday, confirming the letter from the English governing body. "Such investigation is still ongoing. For the purposes of computer security in general, FIFA is itself relying on expert advice from third parties.

"It is for this reason that FIFA cannot and does not provide any computer security advice to third parties."

Asked about concerns about cyber attacks at the FIFA tournament next year, 2018 World Cup organizers said they "would need to check with our IT Department."

Even before the Fancy Bears hack, England was enhancing its IT systems to counter cyber attacks in light of concerns about Russian hackers, said the person with knowledge of the FA's planning. Firewalls have also been strengthened and stronger encryption used on passwords, the person said.

Stay up to date on all the latest Football news with The New Indian Express App. Download now

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.