Germany’s defense minister has warned about the growing threat of cyber attacks, as a newspaper reported that malware had been found on the office computer of Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The report comes just weeks after it emerged that hackers had attacked the lower house of parliament’s computer system.
German parliament tackling hacker threat
Speaking to German newspaper Welt am Sonntag, Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen said this week that cyber attacks were among the biggest challenges for international security, highlighting the “enormous damage” they can cause to the economy.
“The range of threats spans cyber-spying and sabotage to cyber war”, she said.
Meanwhile, the Bild am Sonntag newspaper says that malware had been found on one of the computers from Merkel’s parliamentary office. It mentioned a spokesman for Merke’s CDU party as declining to comment, but it was also unclear any information had been taken by the malware.
Germany’s public prosecutor has recently closed an investigation into the tapping of Merkel’s phone by US spies, saying there was insufficient evidence that would hold up in court.
The inquiry was then dropped, but the case put a strain on relations between Germany and the USA, while the prosecutor said there was no evidence backing allegations from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden that Merkel’s phone had been bugged.