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Ukraine foils Russia-backed cyber attack on power grid

The Ukrainian Internet Service Provider Ukrtelecom was the target of a “massive cyberattack”.

IANS | Kiev |

Ukraine has foiled a massive cyber attack on its power grid that was the handiwork of Russia-backed hackers.

Ukrainian officials said they stopped an attack on an energy facility with the help of researchers from cybersecurity firm ESET and Microsoft, reports The Record.

“They discovered a new variant of Industroyer, an infamous piece of malware that was used by the Sandworm APT group in 2016 to cut power in Ukraine,” the report said.

According to the Computer Emergency Response Team of Ukraine (or CERT-UA), the hackers used ‘Industroyer’ to target “several infrastructural elements” including high-voltage electrical substations, computers at the facility, network equipment and server equipment running Linux operating systems.

“The group planned to shut down computers that controlled substations and infrastructure belonging to a particular power company,” the government agency added.

This attempted attack involved a wide variety of malware.

“Ukraine is once again at the centre of cyberattacks targeting their critical infrastructure. This new Industroyer campaign follows multiple waves of wipers that have been targeting various sectors in Ukraine,” ESET said in a statement.

Ukraine last month neutralised a massive cyber-attack on core IT infrastructure that impacted the entire nation.

According to global Internet access tracker NetBlocks, the nation’s online connectivity collapsed to 13 per cent, leading to the most severe Internet disruption registered in Ukraine since the invasion by Russia.

The Ukrainian Internet Service Provider Ukrtelecom was the target of a “massive cyberattack”.

Ukraine has been the victim of Russia-sponsored cyber attacks since the February 24 invasion.