The leadership of the British intelligence agency MI5 has taken unprecedented measures to protect communications of parliamentarians in anticipation of the upcoming general election in the UK after the hacking of some phones was revealed, The Daily Mirror newspaper wrote on Sunday.
“On the eve of the election, MI5 is conducting a top-secret operation to protect parliamentarians’ phones from Russian hackers,” the publication writes in an exclusive material that at the same time does not contain any evidence of Russia’s involvement in hacking phones.
“Parliamentarians are advised not to use any of their gadgets until they are cleaned of malware,” continues Daily Mirror.
In addition, MI5 issued a recommendation to immediately report any suspicious activity on the phones and computers of government agencies.
MI5 is taking these actions amid tensions between the British government and the intelligence community over the Cabinet’s reluctance to publish a cross-party committee on Intelligence and security report on Russia’s illegal involvement in British political life, according to the authors of the document.
Earlier, The Times reported on the Russians mentioned in the yet-to-be-published report. Among them is former vice-president and deputy chairman of the board of Yukos oil company Alexander Temerko, wife of former Russian Deputy Finance Minister Lubov Chernukhin, as well as Yevgeny Lebedev – the son of Alexander Lebedev, who owns the London newspaper Evening Standard.