Russian hackers have now intensified their cyberattacks against Italy’s government websites and that has caused alarms for officials.
The incident response team of the National Cybersecurity Agency of Italy, Italy’s Computer Security Incident Response Team (CSIRT), detected a surge in distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks targeting the nation’s official sites by hacker groups of Russian origin, according to the Italian news agency ANSA.
Based on the initial findings by CSIRT, the cyberattacks seemed to be a ‘demonstrative’ nature and never affected the integrity and confidentiality of the information and systems of the government websites.
However, the cybersecurity agency warned that it anticipates more cyberattacks in the future, which might target websites of government departments, ministries, and organizations “that provide important services for society.”
CSIRT advises that the Italian websites:
“Maintain a high level of attention on the protection of one’s IT infrastructures, to verify and increase the protection measures relating to DDoS attacks. Attacks, according to some open sources, are destined to continue or intensify in the coming months.”
On December 3, some hackers attacked the website of the Italian Ministry of Agriculture. However, authorities quickly resolved that incident, as reported by the Ukrainian news outlet Euro Integration.
Cybercriminals allegedly launched this attack after Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni declared her massive and continued support in supplying Ukraine with weapons amid its conflict with Russia, based on The Cyber Express.
The Russian group “No name 057 (16)” was the main suspect according to CSIRT. The group was singled out among the hacker groups operating against Italy, ANSA reported. The group was set up in March 2021 and was identified as the main culprit behind cyberattacks against government bodies and important infrastructure in Latvia, Estonia, Slovakia, Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, Norway, and Finland.
These cyberattacks against Italian government websites came several days after the official Vatican website went offline because of suspected hacking.
That incident happened after Pope Francis said in an interview that some Russian ethnic groups were the ‘cruelest’ against Ukrainians in the continuing conflict. The Ukrainian ambassador to the Vatican, Andrii Yurash, accused Russia of being behind the cyberattack on the Vatican’s main website.Buy Crypto Now
As Russia’s cyberattacks intensify, Microsoft warned in a lengthy report published earlier this month that Kremlin could expand its cyberwarfare to nations supporting Ukraine.
Microsoft insisted that Russia could exploit the problems of high energy prices and shortages for its information operations in Europe in a bid to sow lots of discontents and weaken the support for Ukraine, Politico reported.
In the meantime, NATO observed that Russian hackers attack most of the Ukrainian government websites and propagate disinformation to scare people before a real physical attack begins.