Ukraine’s Main Intelligence Directorate has conducted a complex cyber operation against Russia amid their ongoing conflict.
Ukrainian intelligence officers reportedly hacked Moscow’s Federal Air Transport Agency.
The directorate said the operation obtained a large volume of classified official documents about civil aviation in Russia.
According to the intelligence agency, over 150 cases of aircraft technical malfunctions were documented in Russia in the first nine months of 2023.
As a result, the risk of flying in the country has increased, with engines and landing gear being reported as the most problematic concerns.
Among the Russian aircraft included in the documents, the Sukhoi Superjet 100 had the most technical problems with 34 reported cases within an 18-month period.
‘On the Verge of Collapse’
Based on the documents obtained by the intelligence directorate, Russia is experiencing serious difficulties in servicing aircraft with long flight hours.
They also reported a lack of specialists, resulting in frequent aircraft transfers to Iran for maintenance.
“An acute shortage of spare parts has led to the so-called ‘aircraft cannibalism’ in Russia, when some aircraft are dismantled for repairs of others,” the report noted.
With all the evidence collected, Ukraine claimed that Russia is on the verge of civil aviation collapse, partly attributable to the sanctions imposed against Moscow.
For example, most of the country’s Soviet An-2 aircraft are now reportedly unable to get off the ground because their engines are produced in Poland. The supply was stopped because of the sanctions.