Cyber Warfare is the New Normal

Jeremiah Fowler

Jeremiah Fowler

Director of Security Research and Senior Communications Consultant

4 minutes read
Cyber Warfare is the New Normal - Security Discovery

When Russia invaded Ukraine in 2021 the hacktivist group Anonymous declared a cyber war against Russia. I conducted extensive research into the methods, tactics, and results of how a group of semi-unorganized non-governmental hacktivists were able to cause major havoc in Russia.

Their strategy included everything from hacking news outlets, home printers, and connected devices, to downloading a mind-boggling amount of Russian data belonging to companies and government agencies and then publicly releasing that data online. It was the first time the world saw a successful crowdsourced cyber war that defenders could not track back to any specific country or government.

In the more recent conflict between Israel and Hamas, I have seen hacktivist groups attempt many of the same techniques that were successfully used against Russia. In the 19 months since hacktivists declared cyber war against Russia, cyber security experts and intelligence services around the world have had time to analyze, prepare, and try to insulate themselves by learning from the failures of Russia’s cyber defenses.

Cyberspace acts now as a second front with no defined rules of engagement. Hacktivists and government-affiliated groups can choose a side and launch numerous attacks based on their specific skill sets, tipping the scales of the conflict with seemingly just a few clicks. These attacks serve as a warning to nations and businesses alike that we should all prepare for future attacks and implement proactive cybersecurity measures. Going forward, the same potential threats apply to corporations, private businesses, and individuals.

Here are the biggest threats I have seen that U.S. companies should look out for as the Israel-Hamas war rages on and the Russia-Ukraine conflict continues:

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