The head of the US military hacking unit Cyber Command has announced that it successfully conducted offensive cyber operations to support war-torn Ukraine.
The European nation continues to defend against months of Russian aggression, including missile and airstrikes, ground offensives, and cyber attacks.
The recent announcement is unusual since such operations are usually classified.
The disclosure was likely made to highlight the importance of power in cyberspace, especially as ally Kyiv continues to report hacking incidents linked to Moscow.
“We’ve conducted a series of operations across the full spectrum; offensive, defensive, [and] information operations,” General Paul Nakasone told Sky News.
A report by CNN stated that a Cyber Command spokesperson did not dispute the veracity of the information, but declined to give further details about the cyber operations for Ukraine.
Reported Cyber Attacks on Ukraine
Ukraine has reported a number of cyber incidents since Russian President Vladimir Putin launched a “special military operation” in Kyiv on February 24.
In April, Meta said several groups of hackers linked to Russia and Belarus successfully broke into the Facebook accounts of Ukrainian military officials.
The hackers reportedly pretended to be owners of independent online news outlets and ran coordinated campaigns to remove posts opposing the Russian government.
A barrage of text messages from an unknown source was also sent to the Ukrainian military, encouraging them to surrender to Russian forces.
“The outcome of events is predetermined!” the messages said. “Be prudent and refuse to support nationalism and leaders of the country who discredited themselves and already fled the capital!!!”
However, cyber specialists in Kyiv quickly discovered the bot farm, locating all the equipment in the Dnipropetrovsk region.
The Security Service of Ukraine said the equipment was remotely controlled from the Russian Federation.