‘Hacker’ who aided Russia arrested in Ukraine
Image: Security Service of Ukraine
Adam Janofsky March 17, 2022

‘Hacker’ who aided Russia arrested in Ukraine

‘Hacker’ who aided Russia arrested in Ukraine

Ukraine’s main security and counter-intelligence agency on Tuesday announced that it had arrested a “hacker” who allegedly provided Russian troops with mobile communication services in the country.

The technical assistance allowed people in Russia to anonymously make phone calls to troops who had entered Ukraine, according to a post on the Security Service of Ukraine’s (SBU) Telegram channel. Up to 1,000 calls were made through the man’s services in one day, the post added. The agency also alleges that the unidentified man passed commands and instructions to Russian troops, and transmitted text messages with proposals to surrender to Ukrainian security officers and other government officials.

Pictures shared on social media show a handcuffed man sitting at a computer, along with a small collection of routers and other computer equipment. The SBU said the man has been arrested and all of his equipment had been confiscated.

Image: Security Service of Ukraine

Although few additional details were provided about the man’s identity and how his services operated, local media reported that he was a resident of Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, a region in central and eastern Ukraine.

Ukrinform, the national news agency of Ukraine, reported that the man placed specialized equipment in Dnipro — a city that has recently been hit by Russian rockets — that allowed people in Russia to make calls through Ukrainian cellular operators while concealing subscriber’s phone numbers, citing a statement from Ukraine’s Office of the Prosecutor General.

Adam is the founding editor-in-chief of The Record by Recorded Future. He previously was the cybersecurity and privacy reporter for Protocol, and prior to that covered cybersecurity, AI, and other emerging technology for The Wall Street Journal.