6 Листопада 2018

Hacker Attacks on MTOT Official Website: Possible Causes and Consequences

On November 2-3, 2018, a targeted hacker attack was executed on the official website of the Ministry for Temporarily Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons of Ukraine (MTOT), which resulted in the unknown access the control panel of the site.

Using the control panel features, some pages of MTOT website were modified to distribute spam. Currently, the attack was stopped. Access to the website control panel is limited, modified pages are restored to the last saved version. Analysis of lost information is being carried out.

It should be noted that this is not the first attackers’ attempt. Over several months, hackers have repeatedly tried to crack passwords to the ministry’s social network accounts.

According to preliminary estimates of experts, recent malicious actions were related to statements made by the Minister of MTOT on November 1, 2018 during his visit to Bosnia and Herzegovina. Special services of Russian Federation may be involved in these hacker attacks.

Speaking with leading Balkan and European media, Vadym Chernysh said: “Russia interferes in the internal affairs of many countries, especially in Balkans. For that, it uses history, economy and culture and wants to change the situation and political views of a number of European countries. For example, Russian military doctrine talks about destruction of political unions.”

In addition, in an interview with the leading European media, Minister Chernysh emphasized that all Balkan countries, including Bosnia and Herzegovina, are target countries for Russian influence.

“I know that there are attempts by Russian companies to dominate the markets of Balkan countries for political purposes. That means Russia uses economic means to achieve its political goal. We saw this in Macedonia, Montenegro, and other Balkan countries. I am convinced that it is the Russian Federation that attempts to exert influence on all the countries of this region. Therefore, we can say in Ukrainian experience that economic and other relations are often used by Russian Federation not for economic, but for political purposes. And I would advise everyone to think about it before analyzing information not only in the sphere of security but also in other spheres”, – said Vadym Chernysh

Also, during the visit, a joint statement was signed between the representatives of Ukraine and Bosnia and Herzegovina: Minister Vadym Chernysh and Deputy Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of Bosnia and Herzegovina Mato Franjičevićconfirmed the common desire for further development of bilateral economic cooperation in the spheres of tourism, transport, energy, agribusiness on the basis of mutual benefit, which will contribute to the stability and prosperity of both countries.

Soon after the information about the Minister’s visit appeared on MTOT website in English, attempts were made to hack the site and block it.

In the meantime, we have almost restored the work of the site and kindly ask you to keep updated on the Ministry’s pages on Facebook and Twitter.