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Ukraine’s ‘IT army’ targets plan to take Russian telcos, GPS offline

Last week, Ukraine managed to recruit a small army of hackers to try and disrupt Russian corporations, banks, and government agencies. Now they are going after Russia’s GPS system called the Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS).

As reports, the so-called “IT Army” is planning its activities using a dedicated channel on the Telegram messaging service. The most recent posts prioritize three targets: GLONASS, Russian telecoms companies, and the railway network in Belarus. Why target the railway? Because it was being used to transport Russian soldiers.

According to Wikipedia, GLONASS consists of 24 satellites and is capable of full global coverage with an accuracy of 5-10 meters vertical positioning. On the ground, the service is controlled via a single system control center, five Telemetry, Tracking and Command centers, two Laser Ranging Stations, and ten Monitoring and Measuring Stations. The majority of these sites are located within Russia.

Managing to take GLONASS offline would certainly cause the Russian government some pain and raise a lot of questions within Russia about what’s happened. The Belarusian railway network looks to be an easier target. In fact, a hacking group called the Belarusian Cyber Partisans claims to have already disabled parts of the system.

Russia is performing its own cyber-assault as part of the current invasion, though. As well as pouring troops and weaponry into Ukraine, the country is being hit with destructive malware, DDoS attacks, and of course, disinformation. PC Mag

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