Vladimir Putin uses crippling hacking attacks on Ukraine as training to wage cyber war against the West, prominent hacker warns
VLADIMIR Putin is using crippling hacking attacks against Ukraine as training to wage a cyber war against the West, a leading hacker has warned.
Andrei Baranovich, 43, from Donetsk, better known as Sean Townsend, claims that Russia has launched a number of cyber attacks against Ukraine in an attempt to destabilize the country.
The computer expert told Time that Ukraine’s cybersecurity had loopholes that left the country vulnerable.
He said he trained as a hacker in 2014 because he was determined to take revenge for the annexation of Crimea.
The conflict was the worst crisis in East-West relations since the Cold War, which escalated after pro-Kremlin President Viktor Yanukovych was ousted from power after violent protests.
Baranovich was initially praised for his hack against Russia, but that changed when he exposed flaws in Ukraine’s security system.
” We had access to the computers of the ministries in charge of justice and health, without using special tools. We even found that atomic power plants were vulnerable, ”he said.
Baranovich worked as a volunteer with the Ukrainian Cyber Alliance which leaked emails from Vladislav Surkov, known by some to be Putin’s Rasputin.
The documents revealed plans to seize Crimea and how Moscow used “dirty tricks” during the 2014 invasion.
His comments come just days after President Joe Biden called Russian Vladimir Putin and asked him to act to shut down the ransomware groups attacking the West.
Biden said he spoke to Putin and “we expect them to act.”
Last week it was revealed that the Royal Navy ship HMS Queen Elizabeth was being tracked by a Russian submarine in the Black Sea.
Two Merlin Mk2 helicopters were dispatched to search for the vessel.
Along with HMS Queen Elizabeth, two other Type 45 destroyers, two Type 23 frigates and two support ships were also tracked down while sailing off the coast of Cyprus last month.
Earlier this month, a Russian fighter jet repeated the bombardment of enemy ships in the Black Sea.
It was only days after threatening to sink a British warship sailing in the area.
Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said he can attack any ship because the West knows “full well that they cannot win in this war.”
The Russian President said: “Even if we had sunk the British destroyer near Crimea, it is unlikely that the world would have been on the brink of World War III.
“Those who do this know that they could not be the winners in this war.
“We are on our land. We are fighting for ourselves and our future.”