May 22, 2022

The Queens County Citizen

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Thousands of Internet users in Europe have lost access to the Internet after a potential cyber attack

Thousands of Internet users in Europe have lost access to the Internet after a potential cyber attack

Thousands of Internet users in France and Europe have lost access to the Internet due to a potential cyber attack on a satellite network that occurred at the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

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According to Orange, “almost 9,000 subscribers” to the satellite Internet service from its French subsidiary Nordnet lost Internet access due to a “cyber event” on February 24 on the American satellite operator Vyasat. Client.

Eutelsat, the parent company of the Bigblu Satellite Internet Service, confirmed to AFP on Friday evening that one-third of the 40,000 BigBl subscribers in Europe (Germany, France, Hungary, Greece, Italy, Poland) were affected by the ViaSat breakdown. .

In the United States, Viasat said on Wednesday that a “cyber event” had led to a “partial network interruption” for customers in Europe, Ukraine and elsewhere, based on its KA-SAT satellite.

Viasat did not provide further details, but was limited to indicating that “police and state partners” had been notified and were “assisting” with the investigation.

If the euphemism “cyberwevent” leaves any doubt that it is a cyber attack, this fact was confirmed on Thursday by General Michel Friedling, who led the French space command.

“Within days of launching operations, we had a satellite network covering Europe and especially cyber-attacking Ukraine. Tens of thousands of terminals were immediately deactivated,” he said in a press briefing hosted by the Ministry of Defense.

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Military and cyber experts fear that the Russian-Ukrainian conflict could lead to the spread of cyber-attacks, as well as to civilians in Ukraine and Russia, as well as in other parts of the world with the potential for “cyberarmagdon” with significant consequences by spillover impact or “splash”. , According to a term recently used by a French military officer.

At present, the worst scenario seems to have been avoided as the observed attacks appear to be on their effects and geographical scale.

Cybersecurity companies have noticed attacks with a new data-destroying virus in Ukraine, the true effects of which are very little known.

In Russia, organizational sites were made inaccessible from abroad, to protect them from denial of service attacks (DOS), making them regularly useless.