The Act Of Cyber War – Russia and Ukraine

Cyberwarfare is the word used politically to define the most aggressive attacks on the Internet as a form of hacking secret security or important information from the government or countries. On the other words, it can be defined as an activity by national army which uses the Internet as digital battle or an invasion of another country (Paganini, 2013).

It is believed that cyberwarfare is necessary to be defined as model of conflict (Paganini, 2013).  According to Paganini, almost every countries are now investing in cyber capabilities in order to protect and defence for unpredictable future cyberwar. For better explaining the acts of cyber war, the Estonia’s government networks in 2007 was a great example, an offense occurred in a period of intense political contrasts with Russia (Financial Times).

However, there is a recent cyberwarfare from Russian and Ukraine. According to a reporter’s from Texas cyber security firm that a group of Russian hackers exploited Microsoft Windows to keep tracks or spy on Nato and other targets. The hackers also not only attacks a telecommunications firm from French but also an unknown Western European government and an organization in U.S. (iSIGHT, 2014).

“Sandworm Team” is monitored by iSIGHT whose group has been started nearly 5 years ago which impacting all versions of Microsoft Windows (Ward, 2014). Moreover, it is discovered that the hackers prefer to target victims by sending virus as a file which infects the computers once it’s opened which is called “spear-phishing attack”(Jones, 2014).

Furthermore, CNN’s Richard Quest interviews McAfee CEO Michael DeCesare in the face of growing cyber security concerns in Ukraine about whether or not the Russians are really using cyberwar to attack. It discusses that how Russians forces jam phones and block Internet.

According to the report of iSIGHT, a number of attacks have been observed and specific to the Ukrainian conflict with Russia to geopolitical issues. Therefore, Microsoft now released an update to fix security flaw to minimize any future attacks (Jones, 2014).

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10 thoughts on “The Act Of Cyber War – Russia and Ukraine

  1. Hey, thinking about cyberwarfare as the most aggressive attack on the internet is pretty crazy. Countries defending themselves for cyberwar – it seems incredibly futuristic!
    One of the hardest things about cyberwarfare is that it doesn’t seem ‘human’ (which this article -http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/cyber-warfare-needs-a/1421010.html- talks about). That article calls for a “Geneva convention” for cyberwarfare. It’s interesting to wonder whether we’re at that point – where we treat cyberwar like real war?
    Thought-provoking blog, thanks!

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  2. Hi April, great post! You gave a clear overview of cyberwarfare with a relevant case study that really unpacked what can be involved in cyberwarfare. I felt this article expanded on the concepts you brought up by going into more detail on all the aspects of cyberwarfare: http://www.techrepublic.com/article/inside-the-secret-digital-arms-race/. Your research into this topic was great and your post has made me want to research more into governments’ involvement in cyberwar!

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  3. I agree with your opening line, Cyberwarfare is the most aggressive of online attacks. The UK has only recently appointed a SME ‘Cyber Czar’ to secure the online activities of its citizens and to find and connect small businesses in the security field…Every country seems to be at last taking cyberwarfare seriously. http://news.techworld.com/security/3572546/uk-appoints-first-sme-cyber-security-czar-with-4-million-funding-boost/

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  4. Well written, nice use of hyperlinks throughout the post, it makes it easier to access information. Thankfully as you state it would appear that governments are finally starting to take this issue seriously. Even facilitating measures to tackle this issue. Cyber-warfare has the potential to bring society’s to a halt. They face a crisis which does not have a name but it could have a devastating and profound impact. The vanity fair article “A declaration of Cyber-warfare” has a really nice summation about cyber-warfare stating “Cyberspace is now a battlespace. But it’s a battlespace you cannot see, and whose engagements are rarely deduced or described publicly until long after the fact, like events in distant galaxies.” http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/2013/07/new-cyberwar-victims-american-business

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  5. I found it fascinating, how you related the idea of ware and countries being invaded; it worked quite well with what is going on with Russia invading Ukrainian, which you also covered. It also shows you how hard Ukraine has it, that now they have to defend themselves both from physically attacks and now digital one. Which were not the reasons behind its creation or the ideals of it’s early on users the cyberlibertarians.

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  6. Hi April!

    Great post! I liked how you discussed this week’s topic by providing a comprehensive definition of cyberwarfare and gave an example to further illustrate the topic.

    As you mentioned that “almost every country in the world are investing in cyber capabilities”, do you think it is ethical for these countries to engage in cyberwar? In your personal opinion, what do you think are the implications if countries practice cyber-surveillance and launch cyberattacks on one another?

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  7. April, wow, what a thoroughly researched and developed perspective on this topic. I actually just read an article (link below) posted in relation to this conflict and iSIGHT, which is continuing to be a problem for pro-Russian separatists but also companies in France and Poland. What is so interesting to me is that cyberwarfare has become a big enough issue that worldwide firms exist simply to target it, for example iSIGHT in Texas. I loved your account but would also be interested to find out what you personally think about the future of cyberwarfare/cyberterrorism… I believe it is a very probable threat of the future.

    https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/10/17/russian-hackers-find-flaw-microsoft-windows-spy/

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  8. jlrsymonds says:

    Hi April,

    Your choice of case study is great; I find it so much more concerning that modern warfare (that is, cyber warfare) has dramatically shifted the targets and victims of attacks of war. Rather than directly attacking a government, infilitrating systems such As Microsoft – used worldwide, is gravely concerning. Such warfare is not limited to state but could be global, and the perpetrators anonymous. As my research this week found, there are calls to develop international cyber warfare treaties and conventions – but what good is it for a state to sign a convention when it is highly likely they will have no control over individuals in their own country perpetrating such crimes (Mueller 2014)?

    Great use of hyperlinks to your sources.

    References:

    Mueller, B 2014, ‘Why we need a cyberwar treaty’, Guardian, 2 June, viewed 20 October 2014, .

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  9. Hi April. Very well chosen case study to present the topic of cyberware. It is crazy to know that almost every country on Earth are investing in cyberwar to protect and defend themselves for unpredicted future cyberwar. While doing my research on this topic, I came across an article saying that the U.S. is investing and providing training for hackers to engage in the cyber war where some Academies in the U.S. offer degree in “computer science- cyberwarfare” and has made a course in “cyber security” mandatory for Freshman. You can refer to the article here, https://blogs.comodo.com/it-security/hackers-dark-side-tech-revolution/.

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  10. Good job April! This is really a good piece of write up where u associate with various scholars and examples. After reading your post, it had further my knowledge of cyber wars through the examples that you gave.

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