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The Military Security

Russian Cyberspies Targeted MH17 Crash Investigation (trendmicro.com) 88

itwbennett writes: Security researchers from Trend Micro have found evidence that the Pawn Storm cyberespionage group set up rogue VPN and SFTP servers to target Dutch Safety Board employees before and after the report on the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 (MH17) was finalized. It is likely that the rogue servers were set up with the goal of phishing login credentials from people involved in the MH17 crash investigation in order to obtain access to confidential information, the researchers said.
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Russian Cyberspies Targeted MH17 Crash Investigation

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    First Post not from Saint Petersburg.
  • So. Russia has a State-sponsored Cyber Division that uses its skills to further the needs of the Russian power brokers.

    Maybe the US and Europe should look into developing a program like that.

  • Who is surprised? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mi ( 197448 ) <slashdot-2016q1@virtual-estates.net> on Sunday October 25, 2015 @11:57AM (#50797521) Homepage Journal

    For a country that shot a passenger airliner to begin with — and not for the first time [wikipedia.org] — for such a country to attempt to affect the investigation of the crime is no surprise at all. What may be surprising, is that none of the Dutch officials involved were killed or blackmailed. But it ain't over yet, is it?..

    • by Zocalo ( 252965 ) on Sunday October 25, 2015 @12:06PM (#50797557) Homepage
      Dumb thing is that KAL007 should have taught them nothing much would come of it even if they did own up, and in this case they could quite easily have pegged the blame on some unidentified rogue elements of the Pro-Russian forces in Eastern Ukraine right from start and probably have walked away from the whole affair without so much as a slap on the wrist. Instead, all the heavy handed actions, conspiracy theory level alternative theories and random protestation, just make it look all the more likely that they have something to hide - which is kind of ironic coming from the nation that pretty much made the concept of "if you've got nothing to hide, then you've got nothing to fear..." not all that long ago.
      • by Trachman ( 3499895 ) on Sunday October 25, 2015 @12:27PM (#50797661) Journal

        Internal propaganda keeps telling to the Russian audience of 150 million people that Russia does not participate, and that all the weapons, heavy flamethrowers, drones and tanks, are merely bought at military surplus stores.

        Entire story would just collapse.

        Russia does have a history of keeping the parallel history and making it official.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          That and the fact that Putin is a coward who would rather kill a few thousand people more than admitting that he might have misjudged something.

          • Putin a coward? Nonsense! I mean, the man has wrestled naked with a bear, and I'm not just talking about his live-in chum Vasily!
        • by Zocalo ( 252965 ) on Sunday October 25, 2015 @01:02PM (#50797845) Homepage
          Sure they could. They'd only have needed to have done a little handwavium over where the BUK launcher used actually came from (not too much of a stretch given that the Ukrainian military operates the launchers), continued to deny any official Russian military involvement, and insisting that it was all the work of separatists. That still fits the official internal Russian storyline, yet provides a much more plausible story to everyone else that maybe the Ukrainian government really might have "misplaced" a BUK in the turmoil and that it fell into the hands of separatists who, not being suitably trained in its use, then proceeded to shoot down a target without adequately verifying it wasn't civilian - or even did so regardless. Not perfect, certainly, but a heck of a lot better than all the indications of a cover-up that they are now ensnared in.
          • Sure they could. They'd only have needed to have done a little handwavium over where the BUK launcher used actually came from (not too much of a stretch given that the Ukrainian military operates the launchers)

            The report states that the explosive head of the BUK was of the type 9N314M, a newer type of explosive head that was never supplied to the Ukrainian army. This was proven by the typical shapes of this head's load, that were retrieved from the bodies of the crew.

            Interestingly, this conclusion was first made by the Russian members of the investigation team, shortly before they were being recalled to Moscow.

        • by Rei ( 128717 )

          Their latest propaganda line by the Russians is "the report is flawed, as the Russian findings were not taken into account" and that Russia was "kept out of the loop of the investigation". Which, of course, is total BS [bellingcat.com].
           

        • Internal propaganda keeps telling to the Russian audience of 150 million people that Russia does not participate, and that all the weapons, heavy flamethrowers, drones and tanks, are merely bought at military surplus stores.

          Entire story would just collapse.

          Russia does have a history of keeping the parallel history and making it official.

          They still could have come up with a better story than they did. ie:
          "The rebels stole a loaded BUK from a Ukrainian base (let the Ukrainian's try to disprove that) and tragically shot down a civilian airliner by accident! Oh and we think the Ukrainians left the civilian airspace open to deliberately confuse the rebels about which planes were safe to shoot down."

          If Russia pushes that narrative they've instantly acknowledged the obvious with the only major downside being that if the DPR survives they'll proba

        • Internal propaganda keeps telling to the Russian audience of 150 million people that Russia does not participate, and that all the weapons, heavy flamethrowers, drones and tanks, are merely bought at military surplus stores.

          And this is different from the US how?

    • In fairness the USA has shot down airliners and made plenty of similar mistakes in the past (MSF bombing, anyone?). So have other countries.

      Thing is, most countries would at least be honest admit their mistake, and if Russia had admitted they provided their separatists the missile in question it wouldn't have invited some debate and condemnation but blown over fairly quickly. But Putin's administration is so steeped in Soviet-era propaganda they think they can create whatever reality they want by inventing

      • by Anonymous Coward

        In fairness the USA has shot down airliners and made plenty of similar mistakes in the past (MSF bombing, anyone?). So have other countries.

        Thing is, most countries would at least be honest admit their mistake, and if Russia had admitted they provided their separatists the missile in question it wouldn't have invited some debate and condemnation but blown over fairly quickly. But Putin's administration is so steeped in Soviet-era propaganda they think they can create whatever reality they want by inventing their own "truth*".

        While that may work on the faithful chauvinists, to the rest of the world (and Russians in the age of the Internet and satellite TV) it just makes them look like dangerous idiots, not to mention drags out this whole incident far longer than necessary.

        * insert Pravda joke here

        yea... what if it really was not Russia though? We may never know. And neither Russia nor Ukraine may not know. There are untrained idiots with rocket launchers on both sides. The state of Ukrainian army is not very safety assuring. Also, tracing a clear path of ownership of prehistoric weapons like BUK is nearly impossible. It is Soviet-made, not manufactured or used in Russia for 2 decades, so they would have had to try really hard to produce one. But they are still on active duty in the Ukrainian army.
        Th

        • by Cederic ( 9623 )

          I think the attempt to blame Russia for INTENTIONALLY shooting down the plane is completely baseless, and fully manufactured.

          Yeah, it's curious seeing the Dutch politicians demand criminal charges - that aren't against the fuckwits flying civilian aircraft through a warzone in which multi-engine aircraft have recently been shot down.

        • Then of course the rebels could have gained them in battle from the Ukrainians, tried to shoot, and failed. It is a complex system to navigate and aim, and requires trained personnel. Or Ukrainian army conducted an exercise that misfired, which is quite possible, knowing the sad state of affairs there

          No, they could not. The load on the BUK contained specific shapes that were retrieved from the bodies of the crew, which prove that the BUK's load was of the type 9N314M. That Ukrainian army has never been in possession of that type.

      • by gl4ss ( 559668 )

        it's not for international discussions sake that puting is denying it.

        putin is saying in Russia that Russia does not participate, that there is no russian soldiers dying in ukraine and so forth - and in current russia if you say otherwise you're an undesirable and potentially subject to.. well, getting shot in the back near kremlin to put bluntly.

        the international news following russians are being scared into being quiet or just outright leaving the country so there's that - also a typical russian has been

  • the investigation investigates the investigators.
  • by nickweller ( 4108905 ) on Sunday October 25, 2015 @12:36PM (#50797703)
    I don't understand how these Russian Cyberspies are so careless as to leave a trail all the way back to Moscow.

    Equation: The Death Star of Malware Galaxy [securelist.com]
  • Let's put the political stuff aside for a moment and look at the technical side. How did the attackers operate? A fake mail/vpn server? How is that supposed to work?

    Or are we talking about standard script kiddie attacks (seeen by every site on the web) interpreted by Trend Micro as Russian government attacks? Let's not forget that this is a great commercial message for Trend Micro. Is this stuff for real or is someone trying to scare us?

    Obviously there are lots of Russian hackers/script kiddies who are angr

  • There are so many portable SAM missiles out there in the wild, that it makes sense to use an active protection system on civil aircrafts too.

    For example, an IR-decoy flares system. It is small and relatively cheap.

    The ejection seats would also be useful. In case of an Air France crash into the ocean when the airplane just stalled and fell down from the sky, it would save hundreds of passengers.

    Civil Aircraft construction industry is stagnating. It has completely bureaucratized and politicized. Ther
  • Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 (MH17) is the Tonkins Gulf incident of Eurasia, except thsi time something DID happen, but the attribution is fake. Read the headlines, read the incessant drumbeat against Russia. This is being used to whip the US into approviing some military interventionism in the Ukraine.

    It's total bullshit. Just like the US, Russia has tons of their weapons in the hands of people they do not directly control every action of. So we really have no hope of finding out who fired that missile and

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