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More Russian-Led Hacks, Cyberattacks On Critical Infrastructure Expected
Officials are closely monitoring the advances of the Russian military force in Ukraine within the physical and digital landscapes. Cyberthreats to critical government infrastructure are a growing concern, not only targeted at Ukraine, but also Western nations and government agencies.
Lee McKnight is an associate professor in the Syracuse University School of Information Studies (iSchool) whose research specialty includes cybersecurity. He provides written comments that can be quoted directly, and is available for interviews as well as this situation unfolds.
“U.S. cybersecurity leaders for private companies and in government have been on alert for weeks as President Putin telegraphed his intent to invade Ukraine’s territory, information systems, and infrastructure. Russian cyberattacks on critical infrastructure, falsely claimed to be provoked by Ukrainian attacks to which Russia was responding, and hacks of Ukrainian government websites, were all sadly to be expected parts of this operation.
“For average Americans, there is also a need to be extra alert both to the Russian disinformation campaign and its domestic witting or unwitting partners’ efforts to confuse and to deny the truth of what is happening. Everyone should also be aware of an increased likelihood of incoming phishing emails, and perhaps a little more skillful than average deep fakes. These are professional state-sponsored attempts to infiltrate and distract.
“The main thing for everyone to know now is this metaverse of real and unreal actions and actors is not going away any time soon. Everyone needs to boost their information security awareness, with training, and not just new services or hardware. Since the weakest link in cyber-defense is everyone’s “cyberhygiene”, it makes it easy to infiltrate and wreak havoc.”
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