Ukraine Set to Join NATO Cyber Hub

A NATO-affiliated cyber defense center has voted to admit Ukraine as a participant in a move likely to anger Russia and bring its western neighbor closer to the military organization.

The Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence (CCDCOE) said Ukraine would become a “contributing participant” alongside other non-NATO member countries, including Sweden, Finland, South Korea and Switzerland.

“Capability and knowledge comes from experience, and Ukraine definitely has valuable experience from previous cyber-attacks to provide significant value to the NATO CCDCOE,” said Estonia’s minister of defense, Kalle Laanet.

“Estonia as a host nation of the CCDCOE has been a long-term partner for Ukraine in enhancing its cybersecurity capacity and cyber-resilience and we welcome the decision of the members of CCDCOE agreeing to Ukraine’s membership.”

The CCDCOE was founded in 2008 after a series of massive cyber-attacks in Estonia the year before crippled the country for weeks. The campaign was blamed on Russian hackers.

The center is billed as a knowledge hub, research institution, and training facility focused on interdisciplinary applied research, consulting, training and exercises in cybersecurity.

The move will likely be met with fury in the Kremlin, which repeatedly called out ‘NATO aggression’ as a justification for its invasion of Ukraine.

In related news, Amazon on Friday claimed to have detected cyber-attacks trying to disrupt medical supplies, food and clothing relief destined for civilians trapped in Ukraine and under fire from Russian artillery.

Although these specific attacks were launched from non-state actors, there has also been a surge in activity from groups known to be tied to nation-states, the tech giant said.

“For several weeks, we have been partnering closely with Ukrainian IT organizations to fend off attacks and working with organizations in Ukraine, and around the world, to share real-time, relevant intelligence,” Amazon explained in a blog post.

“As a result, our teams have seen new malware signatures and activity from a number of state actors we monitor. As this activity has ramped up, our teams and technologies detected the threats, learned the patterns, and placed remediation tools directly into the hands of customers.”

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