Cyberwar training

On 26th February, 2022. The world was hit with breaking news that Russian state TV channels have been hacked by Anonymous, a hacktivist collective and movement who have made a name taking part in multiple cyber wars in the past decade. This was in response to the Russian aggression on Ukrainian territory in the hopes of annexation. Anonymous hacked the Russian state TV networks to combat propaganda in Russia and highlight the damage to life meted out by the Kremlin in Ukraine. They also hacked 120,000 Russian troops' personal information and the Russian central bank, stealing 35,000 files. 

This served as a clear indicator of how cyberwar can change the momentum in battle, something which people had never seen so closely. 

What is Cyberwar?

A digital assault or series of strikes or hacks against a country or it's related territory is sometimes referred to as a cyberwar. It has the ability to cause havoc on government and civilian infrastructure, as well as disrupt essential systems, causing state harm and even death. In this day and age, the internet plays a bigger role than just watching videos and learning content.

It's where you have your personal data and carry financial transactions. So rather than resorting to physical violence, cyberwar has become the new means to cause havoc, considering the vulnerability of the data passing through the internet. In most circumstances, cyber warfare involves the nation-state attacking another. In certain cases, the assaults are carried out by terrorist organizations or non-state actors pursuing a hostile nation's aim. 

Weapons of Cyberwar

In June 2021, Chinese hackers targeted organizations like Ryzen to secure remote access to their networks. Stuxnet was a computer worm designed to attack Iran's nuclear facilities, but evolved and expanded to many other industrial and energy-producing sites in 2010. Since the definition of cyberwar is so vague, applying rules and sanctions based on digital assault is even tougher, making the field of cyberwarfare a lawless land, not bound by any rules or policies. There are multiple ways in which these attacks can be carried out. 

A major category of cyber attack is espionage. Espionage entails monitoring other countries to steal critical secrets. This might include compromising vulnerable computer systems with botnets or spear phishing attempts before extracting sensitive data in cyber warfare.

The next weapon in cyberwar is sabotage. Government agencies must identify sensitive data and its dangers if it is exploited. Insider threats, such as disgruntled or irresponsible personnel or government staff with ties to the attacking country, can be used by hostile countries or terrorists to steal or destroy information. By overwhelming a website with bogus requests and forcing it to handle them, denial-of-service attacks prohibit real users from accessing it. Attacking parties may use this form of assault to disrupt key operations and systems and prevent citizens, military and security officials and research organizations from accessing sensitive websites. 

But what benefits does cyber war offer in contrast to traditional physical warfare? 

The most important advantage is the ability to conduct attacks from anywhere globally without having to travel thousands of miles. As long as the attacker and target are connected to the internet, organizing and launching cyber wars is relatively less tedious than physical warfare.

People living in or battling for a country are subjected to propaganda attacks in an attempt to manipulate their emotions and thoughts. Digital infrastructure is highly crucial in today's modern world. Starting from communication channels to secure storage servers, crippling a country's footprint and control on the internet is very damaging. 

But what are some of the ways we as citizens protect ourselves in the case of a cyber war? 

In the unfortunate event that your country is involved in warfare, be sure to fact-check every piece of information and follow only trusted sources in that frame of time.

Even conversations online should be limited to a need-to-know basis, considering propaganda campaigns have the power to influence the tide of war drastically. 

It is highly crucial to follow basic security guidelines to secure our devices, like regularly updating our operating systems, occasionally running full-system antivirus scans, etc. 

If your country or organization is being attacked, having devices segregated in a network goes a long way in bolstering security. Trying to avoid sharing of personal information online, in this era of Instagram and Facebook, divulging private information can be detrimental to keeping a secure firewall for your data. The more information an attacker has access to, the higher his chances of being able to devise a plan to infiltrate defenses. 

So here we come to the end of today's post on cyberwar, we hope you enjoyed it. If you did, sharing it would be really appreciated. Thank you for reading and stay tuned for more from trends on technology.

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