The European Union, the United States and the United Kingdom have officially accused Russia of the cyberattack against the American communications company Viasat, which took place on the day of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The Council of the European Union issued a press release in which, together with its international partners, “strongly condemns” the attack on the KA-SAT satellite network, operated by Viasat.
The attack primarily targeted the Ukrainian military, but there was extensive collateral damage, with thousands of civilian Viasat customers in Ukraine, as well as “tens of thousands” of customers across Europe, all facing Internet interruptions.
Used AcidRain wiper
In addition, remote access to almost 6,000 wind turbines in Germany has also been disabled.
“This unacceptable cyberattack is another example of Russia’s continued irresponsible behavior in cyberspace, which is also integral to its unlawful and unwarranted invasion of Ukraine,” the announcement read. “Such behavior is contrary to the expectations established by all UN member states, including the Russian Federation, of responsible state behavior and state intentions in cyberspace.”
Independent cybersecurity researchers say the Russians used malware called “AcidRain” in the attack. AcidRain can remotely wipe vulnerable modem terminals.
Even today, more than two months after the start of the invasion and the cyberattack, the attack has not yet been fully corrected. “Tens of thousands” of terminals were destroyed in the attack, and replacing them will take time. Viasat has so far shipped some 30,000 routers to affected customers, he said.
The Internet turned out to be the second front of the war between Russia and Ukraine. While Hacktivists Anonymous, along with many other hacking groups, have used their skills to bring censored content to the Russian people, Russia has isolated its internet, tightly controls the media, and engages in cyber espionage and destructive campaigns against Ukrainian infrastructure, government agencies and their allies.