During times of war, fakes and misinformation are particularly prone to circulate on social media.
With the state of war in Ukraine in its second month and the local army doing what it can to ward off the Russian invasion, i of the battles is also being waged on Facebook.
(MVRS) – Go Meta Report revealed in its latest security report, a grouping of hackers with ties to the Belorussian government broke into the accounts of Ukrainian military personnel and posted videos calling on Ukrainian military machine members to surrender.
The hacking grouping, which security researchers have been calling “Ghostwriter,” was able to brand the videos look equally if they were legitimate by gaining access to electronic mail addresses and posting from existent Ukrainian accounts.
“Nosotros detected and disrupted recidivist CIB action linked to the Belarusian KGB who suddenly began posting in Polish and English virtually Ukrainian troops surrendering without a fight and the nation’south leaders fleeing the country on Feb 24, the mean solar day Russia began the state of war,” Meta wrote in the written report, adding that the group had previously posted nearly police violence in the U.S. and Poland’south treatment of migrants in the Heart East.
A Brief History of Russia’s War In Ukraine
While tensions between Russia and Ukraine have been escalating since the 2014 annexation of Crimea, the situation launched into total-blown state of war when Russian troops entered Ukraine under the guise of “denazification” and a “special military operation” on Feb. 24.
The attacks take resulted in not-cease shelling of dozens of cities and a humanitarian crisis of 10 million Ukrainians (a fourth of the land) who involuntarily became refugees in neighboring countries.
Gyre to Continue
The Ukrainian army has been fighting back with support from the U.s., Canada and dozens of other Western countries. Russian troops were not able to take the upper-case letter of Kyiv and retreated to other parts of Ukraine in the last week.
The Hackers Haven’t Been Fully Stopped, Though
While Meta reports that it was able to block most of the videos earlier they had a chance to be seen by viewers, Ghostwriter had been continuously trying to hack into the accounts of “dozens of Ukrainian military personnel” in March and Apr.
“When it comes to persistent threat actors, we’ve seen a further spike in action by Ghostwriter,” Ben Nimmo, Meta’s global threat intelligence pb for influence operations, told a grouping of reporters in a call.
Some other hacking campaign has been targeting information criticizing war from Ukrainian and Russian accounts — as early on as wintertime 2021, hackers were orchestrating large numbers of fake accounts to report any posts against the Russian authorities’due south actions in Ukraine as “hate speech communication” and “bullying.”
While Meta reported removing such accounts from Facebook, stopping such behavior is a bit similar playing whack-a-mole since new campaigns restart every bit soon as i is stopped.
So What Can Be Done Well-nigh It?
A calendar week after its invasion of Ukraine, Russian federation blocked access to Facebook and Twitter
(TWTR) – Get Twitter, Inc. Report after the latter ii blocked state-endemic media from their platforms. That said, nearly Russians accept still been accessing accounts through a VPN — and, presumably, vrarious groups of hackers are besides continuing to program and orchestrate attacks both from inside and outside Russia.
“The network coordinated to falsely report people in Ukraine and also in Russia for various violations, including hate voice communication, in an attempt to have them and their posts removed from Facebook,” Meta said.