DAA Daily

How the Ukraine war is being waged online

By Aryaman Bhatia, Science and Tech Editor, The Pawprint

It has been said that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine will be the first to create a new front line – the internet.

And cyber-attacks on both sides have been raging, with fears that things may become worse.

However, a digital war is being conducted in a variety of different ways, including issues over whether technology companies should restrict content to Russia, online censorship, the dissemination of disinformation, and the interruption of Ukraine’s internet when missiles fall.

The hacker organization Anonymous has declared cyberwar on the Russian government.

Its assertions should be taken with a grain of salt, but it has purportedly hacked state TV outlets to broadcast pro-Ukraine information.

There has also been hacking directed towards Ukraine, with denial-of-service assaults on official websites and the appearance of what appears to be ransomware with no means to retrieve data.

This “wiper” virus was discovered in hundreds of Ukrainian systems throughout the government, non-profit, and information technology sectors, according to Microsoft. It was “intended to be harmful and meant to render targeted machines useless.”

According to Reuters, Ukrainian officials have claimed that a Belarusian cyber-spying operation is targeting personal email accounts belonging to Kyiv’s soldiers.

In the United Kingdom, Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng is expected to meet with Paula Rosput Reynolds, chairwoman of the National Grid, amid worries of a wave of state-sponsored Russian assaults.

In addition, the National Cyber Security Centre has urged businesses to strengthen their internet defenses.

However, its previous leader Ciaran Martin told the Guardian newspaper that cyber has played “remarkably little role” in the fight thus far.

During any crisis, the Internet connection is likely to be spotty because of the damage that bombs and missiles cause to networks and equipment.

According to NetBlocks, severe combat in Kharkiv caused major interruption on Friday, with access to Ukraine’s primary internet provider, GigaTrans, plunging below 20% of typical levels.

Elon Musk, the billionaire entrepreneur, reacted promptly to requests for his satellite internet service, Starlink, to be activated throughout the country. Ukraine’s Minister of Digital Transformation, Mykhailo Fedorov, stated on Monday that the country has acquired critical terminals essential for the system to function.

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