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Hackers attack Russian satellites' database

Hackers attack Russian satellites' database Illustrative photo (Freepik)
Author: Maria Kholina

Hackers have targeted a Russian state enterprise responsible for receiving and processing data from satellites, including information transmitted to the Russian Ministry of Defense, the General Staff, and emergency services, according to the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.

According to the Main Intelligence Directorate, a database of the Russian state enterprise Planeta, a long-range research center for space hydrometeorology, was destroyed in Russia. This federal-level enterprise is involved in receiving and processing satellite data, providing products to over 50 state entities, primarily military.

The cyber volunteers from the BO Team group carried out the attack against the easternmost (largest of the three) branch of space hydrometeorology. According to the Main Intelligence Directorate, the hackers successfully destroyed 280 servers, resulting in the loss of about 2 petabytes (200 million gigabytes) of data. The estimated cost of the digital array lost by Russia is at least $10 million.

Among the destroyed data were meteorological and satellite information actively used by the Russian Ministry of Defense, the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry, Roskosmos, and several other agencies. Additionally, years of accumulated unique research were also wiped out.

Furthermore, the supercomputer equipped in the center, which is not recoverable, incurred damage. Such a computing device, along with its software, costs $350,000. The intelligence reports that, given Russia's sanctions, obtaining such software is unlikely.

"Along with data repositories, servers, and computers, the cyber attack paralyzed the air conditioning and humidity control systems, as well as the regulation of emergency power supply in the center's building," emphasizes the Main Intelligence Directorate.

Other cyber attacks

On December 31, the Ukrainian IT Army gave Russians a "New Year's gift" by disrupting the operation of Evetor payment terminals.

Ukrainian hackers also obtained 200 gigabytes of data on thousands of organizations in Russia, which was the result of their six months of work.

Hackers from the Blackjack group hacked a Russian state enterprise that constructs military facilities throughout the Russian Federation, stealing documentation for 500 objects belonging to the Russian Ministry of Defense.