The Moscow Times gives a brief explanation of why there are so many Russian hackers. Does it imply that Russians hacked into poorly defended democratic computers? Not really. It only suggests that Russia certainly has the personnel and the required talent for this to happen.
Lost in the debate about Russian influence in the U.S. presidential election is the fact Russian hackers have been active for a long time. Littering the illicit pages of the dark web, Russian hacking programs today make possible most of the world’s financial-sector break-ins. Increasingly, Russian hackers have acted with political motivations, but their bread and butter is and has always been theft and corporate espionage.It's an interesting read.
[...]“The U.S.S.R. had the largest engineering community in the world,” says Andrey Soldatov, author of The Red Web and an expert on cyber security and the Russian security services. “They existed to support the Soviet military-industrial complex, and after its collapse, many of these experts and their children, found themselves left high and dry.”
And so, in the 1990s and early 2000s, the Russian-speaking hacker community flourished.
“In the early 2000s, lots of people who had access to computers knew how to hack — and they did it, even just to get access to the Internet,” Kruchenok says. “A lot of people worked on the so-called ‘gray Internet’ in the businesses of spam, malware, and porn. Groups would hire talented people to write the code for these industries.”