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russia's war on Ukraine is accompanied by a surge in cyber attacks around the world – EU

20.07.2022, 15:22

After the start of the unprovoked and criminal aggression against Ukraine, russia has significantly increased its hostile cyber activities against EU countries and the whole world, which creates risks of side effects, misunderstandings, and escalation of tension on a global scale.

This is stated in the Declaration by the High Representative of the EU on behalf of all the countries of the European Community, published on July 19 on the European Council's website.

"russia's unprovoked and unjustified military aggression against Ukraine has been accompanied by a significant increase of malicious cyber activities, including by a striking and concerning number of hackers and hacker groups indiscriminately targeting essential entities globally. This increase in malicious cyber activities, in the context of the war against Ukraine, creates unacceptable risks of spillover effects, misinterpretation and possible escalation," the document says.

The declaration states that the EU condemns the cyber attack against Ukraine on January 14, 2022, as well as the attack on the KA-SAT satellite network, for which the russian federation is responsible.

"The latest distributed DDoS attacks against several EU Member States and partners claimed by pro-russian hacker groups are yet another example of the heightened and tense cyber threat landscape that EU and its Member States have observed. We strongly condemn this unacceptable behaviour in cyberspace and express solidarity with all countries that have fallen victim," the Declaration states.

EU countries have expressed their determination to address and investigate these malicious cyber activities that are affecting international peace, security and stability, including the security of the European Union and its Member States, their democratic institutions, citizens, businesses, and civil society.

The EU also recalled the need for all UN Member States to adhere to the UN Framework of responsible state behaviour in cyberspace in order to ensure international peace, security and stability.

"We continue to closely monitor the situation in view of taking further steps where necessary to prevent and counter such malicious behaviour in cyberspace," the document reads.

We remind you that in June 2017, the European Union created the so-called "cyber diplomacy toolbox" for the purpose of joint response to malicious cyber activity. This allows the EU and its member states to introduce, if necessary, restrictive measures, sanctions, and other tools to respond to and deter cyber threats against the EU and its member states. As of today, the EU has imposed such sanctions as asset freezes and travel bans against a number of individuals and institutions in russia, China, and North Korea.

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