Russian Security Services Arrest Suspected Ukrainian Hackers

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Russia’s feared security service the FSB has detained two men suspected of launching cyber-attacks against domestic IT assets in support of Ukraine, according to reports.

One of the two men is currently studying at Tomsk State University of Control Systems and Radioelectronics, according to Moscow-headquartered newspaper Kommersant.

The man is suspected of joining Ukrainian-supervised cyber-forces and has carried out attacks on “Russian information infrastructure facilities,” according to the report.

It’s unclear what kind of attacks these are, but if the article is referring to the volunteer organization the IT Army of Ukraine, it’s most likely to be distributed denial of service (DDoS) or web defacement. The man’s home was searched and he was apparently transported by plane to Moscow.

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The second man was detained in the mining town of Belovo, also in Siberia. He’s suspected of joining a Ukrainian cyber unit working under the direction of the country’s intelligence services.

“As part of it, he carried out computer attacks using malicious software on Russian information resources, which led to disruption of the country’s critical infrastructure facilities,” the FSB reportedly said in a statement on the arrests.

Videos have emerged of the man being thrown to the ground by FSB officers and bundled into a vehicle. His home was searched and computer equipment and storage media seized.

Criminal cases have reportedly been opened against the duo under Article 275 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, meaning they could face life in jail for high treason.

It’s unclear if the two cases were connected in any way, although there are many inside Russia who share anti-Putin views that the regime regards as treasonous.

Last week, a 23-year-old from Krasnoyarsk was reportedly arrested for filming and photographing infrastructure facilities including railway junctions and energy facilities and sending the details to Ukrainian intelligence.

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