Ukraine's cyber army hits Russian cinemas

Several major Russian cinema chains were hit over the weekend, disrupting services and annoying moviegoers all over the country.

Cyber tit-for-tat resumes alongside the fiery conflict in Ukraine as the IT army of Ukraine attacked Russia's movie theaters. A series of distributed denial-of-service attacks hit around 80 cinemas in Russia.

Ukraine's cyber army took responsibility for the attack on its Telegram channel, claiming that the less tax Russian companies collect, the less there is to spend on the war the Kremlin started in Ukraine.

"Thanks to you, the sites of russian [sic] cinemas rested for the weekend. Less tickets bought online mean less money in the budget for financing the war. Today, we are returning all power to the attack on the logistics of the russian [sic] federation," read the attacker's statement.

Ukraine Cyber Army hit Russian cinemas
Ukraine's IT Army post.

According to the Russian film business media, Kinomax, Mori Cinema, Luxor, Almaz, and other chains were hit all over the country. A ticket service Kinoplan was also disrupted over the weekend.

"Movies off. Russian cinemas get used to showing illegal copies and propaganda footage. How about turning them off?" the IT army of Ukraine posted on Telegram before the attacks.

Flames of cyber war

The conflict between different hacker groups started after 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 hacker groups such as Killnet and XakNet have targeted countries that support Ukraine.

Government websites in Norway, Lithuania, Italy, Romania, Germany, as well as websites in Czechia, Latvia, and elsewhere were under Killnet's cyber fire. The pro-Russian group has declared a war against NATO and countries that support Ukraine.

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.