Kommersant Accuses Nashi Hackers

The Kommersant newspaper has complained to police and prosecutors about a massive hacker attack on its web site, which it suspects was orchestrated by the pro-Kremlin youth group Nashi.

The attacks on the newspaper's web site began last week, Kommersant lawyer Georgy Ivanov said, and the site remained paralyzed for much of Thursday.

Meanwhile, entering the Russian expletive "zasrantsy," or assholes, in popular Internet search engines Yandex, Yahoo and Google returned links to the Kommersant site Thursday.

The Distributed Denial of Service, or DDoS, attacks on the Kommersant site come in the wake of an enigmatic recent campaign against the independent-minded daily in which young people on the street were distributing rolls of toilet paper.

Printed on the toilet paper was the Kommersant logo, a letter purportedly from editor-in-chief Andrei Vasilyev and the cell phone number of Kommersant reporter Yulia Taratuta.

Vasilyev said the letter printed on the toilet paper was a forgery.

Taratuta penned an article published in January in which an unidentified Kremlin official was quoted as calling Nashi activists "jubilant street punks" and saying their services were no longer needed.

Kommersant filed complaints to city police and city prosecutors Wednesday over the toilet-paper incident and hacker attacks, Ivanov said Thursday.

"We don't mention Nashi in our complaints because there are no legal grounds to do so," Ivanov said.

The DDoS attacks on the Kommersant site were increasing Thursday, he said.

A City Prosecutor's Office spokeswoman said investigators were looking into the complaints. She declined to elaborate.

Nashi spokeswoman Kristina Potupchik denied group's involvement in the attacks on the Kommersant site and the toilet paper campaign.

Earlier this month, a detailed plan on how to disrupt the newspaper's operations -- including hacker attacks -- purportedly authored by Potupchik and several other senior Nashi members began making the rounds of the Russian blogosphere.

Potupchik said Thursday that the plan was "a fake."