A significant share of attacks occurred before the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Since the beginning of the year, the Computer Emergency Response Team of Ukraine (CERT-UA) has detected 1,123 cyberattacks.
During the first month of the war, Ukraine experienced three times more cyberattacks than in the same period a year earlier.
“Cyberattacks still occur today, though, they have become a bit less intense,” State Service of Special Communications and Information Protection of Ukraine (SSSCIP) said.
Government and local authorities experienced 260 cyberattacks, and security and defense organizations suffered 154 security incidents.
A month before war and the first month of the war, Russian hacking operations had been aimed at communications to impair the capacities of the Ukrainian military and government. Later, the Russians changed their hacking tactics and focused on inflicting maximum possible damage on the civilian population.
“Such strategy conforms with the Russian army’s approach, which is to destroy the civil infrastructure (schools, kindergartens, maternity wards), critical infrastructure, residential buildings and killing defenseless people instead of fighting,” SSSCIP said.
Lately, pro-Russian hackers have been targeting civil infrastructure - energy, financial, commercial sectors, telecommunication, and transportation providers.
“Media and social accounts of public and military figures are also targets of hackers. The purpose of such attacks is spreading propaganda and fakes, however, our citizens don’t believe in them,” SSSCIP said.
Flames of cyberwar
Cyberwarfare has been plaguing Europe since Russia invaded Ukraine on 24 February. Groups supporting Ukraine started targeting organizations in Russia to help the country defend against the invasion.
Kyiv succeeded in rallying an international IT army to help it fight the digital war. Anonymous, Ukraine’s IT Army, Hacker Forces, and many other hacktivist groups started targeting Russia’s private and state-owned enterprises.
Meanwhile, pro-Russian groups carried out several DDoS attacks against countries supporting Ukraine. Government websites in Finland, Italy, Romania, Germany, Norway, and Lithuania, as well as websites in Czechia, Latvia, and elsewhere, were under cyber fire.
According to the United Nations, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has created the ‘fastest-growing refugee crisis in Europe since World War II.’ Over 12 million people were displaced due to the conflict in a nation with 44 million residents.
Witness testimonies from Ukrainian towns Russian forces have occupied for close to a month point to severe human rights violations and targeted lethal attacks against civilians. Reports of “gross and systematic violations and abuses of human rights” got Russia suspended from the UN Human Rights Council.
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