Details of Over 300,000 Russian Reservists Leaked, Anonymous Claims

Hacktivist collective Anonymous has claimed to have leaked the personal data of over 300,000 individuals likely to be mobilized by the Russian government to fight in Ukraine.

In a message posted on one of the group’s Twitter accounts on Friday, September 23, 2022, Anonymous TV (@YourAnonTV), it said it had “hacked the website of the Russian Ministry of Defense and leaked the data of 305,925 people who are likely to be mobilized in the first of three waves of mobilization.”

An image was posted purporting show the personal information of these individuals.

Anonymous’ claim followed a national address by Russian President Vladimir Putin just two days earlier, on September 21, in which a partial military mobilization of 300,000 reservists was announced to bolster the Kremlin’s so-called special military operation in Ukraine. This announcement came in response to a major counter-offensive by Ukraine’s armed forces, retaking large portions of territory occupied by Russia since the early stages of the conflict.

If Anonymous’ latest claims are proven to be true, it could leave the reservists open to social engineering attacks and potentially being contacted by Ukrainians.

Hacktivist group Anonymous has launched numerous cyber-attacks against Russia in support of Ukraine during the conflict. Immediately following the start of its invasion on February 24, 2022, it declared a “cyber war” against Vladimir Putin’s government.

In March, the group claimed to have breached the database of the Russian federal agency responsible for the supervision of communications, information technology and mass media, leaking over 360,000 files in the process. In the same month, the group also hacked streaming services and TV news channels in Russia to broadcast footage of the war in Ukraine.

Cyber has played a significant role in the Russia-Ukraine war, with Russia believed to be behind numerous attacks against the Ukrainian government and critical services in the build up to and since the invasion began. It has also targeted countries that have provided humanitarian and economic support to Ukraine.

Despite Russia’s perseverance, Ukraine’s cyber-defenses have proven resilient and robust in the face of these threats. Commenting in a recent Infosecurity Magazine article examining the cyber aspects of the war in Ukraine, Craig Terron, global issues team at Recorded Future’s Insikt Group, stated: “Partly why we haven’t seen those massive attacks is because Ukraine’s cyber defense has been strong with some support from the West and NATO.”

Outside of Ukraine, Western government organizations have warned corporations to bolster their cyber defences with cyber-attacks expected to be used as a Russian retaliation tactic in the face of severe sanctions.

What’s Hot on Infosecurity Magazine?