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Tipsheet

Ukraine Reportedly Hit By Cyber Attacks ‘On a Different Level’

AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky

Several Ukrainian banks and government websites became inaccessible due to cyber attacks the government described as being “on a different level,” BBC News reported Wednesday. 

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Internet connectivity company NetBlocks confirmed that several government websites were impacted by cyber attacks, including Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense. The intensity of the attacks reportedly increased as the day wore on.

Distributed denial of service attacks, known as DDoS attacks, occur when a website goes offline after it is overwhelmed with requests until it crashes.

Ukraine’s Digital Transformation Minister Mykhaylo Federov wrote on Telegram that “another mass DDoS attack on our state [has] begun.”

A researcher who spoke to BBC News said that “Ukraine’s military and banking websites have seen a more rapid recovery after today’s cyber-attack, likely due to preparedness and increased capacity to implement mitigations.”

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“Despite this, the incident is ongoing, with latency and outages continuing at the Security Service of Ukraine, which points to the severity of the incident,” the researcher added.

BBC noted that on Tuesday, the European Union announced a cyber attacked rapid-response team was deployed across Europe after a “call for help” from Ukraine. However, it is not known if this team of experts from six countries helped defend Ukraine against today’s cyber attack. 

“DDoS attacks have been used in various campaigns as a part of Russia's so-called "hybrid warfare" tactics, combining cyber-attacks with traditional military activity,” the report stated. “DDoS attacks hit Georgia and Crimea during the incursions in 2008 and 2014 respectively.”

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