Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence has suffered a major cyber attack that prevented users from accessing its website, amid heightened tensions with Russia.
Two Ukrainian banks also lost access to online banking services, according to the government.
The Ukrainian Ministry of Defence said that its website was hit with a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack.
“The website was probably attacked by DDoS: an excessive number of requests per second was recorded. Technical works on restoration of regular functioning are carried out. Communication through FB and Twitter pages,” the ministry tweeted late on Tuesday.
The DDoS attack sends multiple requests to the attacked web resource — with the aim of exceeding the website’s capacity to handle multiple requests, and prevent the website from functioning correctly.
Two banks also suffered from a DDoS attack that took ATMs offline.
According to the Ukrainian government’s Center for Strategic Communications, PrivatBank faced a “massive DDoS attack” that blocked many online banking services, including payments and balance inquiries.
Oschadbank also lost all online banking functionality, according to the statement.
The experts suspected Russia’s involvement in the fresh cyber attacks.
Last month, state-sponsored hackers launched a “massive cyber-attack” on Ukraine, shutting down several government websites.
“As a result of a massive cyber-attack, the websites of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and a number of other government agencies are temporarily down,” the Foreign Ministry in Kiev had said.
“It’s too early to draw conclusions, but there is a long record of Russian assaults against Ukraine,” a spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry was quoted as saying.
Among those affected were the Foreign Ministry’s, the National Security and Defence Council, and the government’s Cabinet of ministers’ websites. On some of the websites, a text in three languages — Ukrainian, Polish, and Russian — stated that all data uploaded to the network by Ukrainians had become public.
Russia has been accused of cyber-attacks against Ukraine on numerous occasions.
Meanwhile, US President Joe Biden said the US is still pursuing a diplomatic solution to the current standoff between Russia and the West over Ukraine, meanwhile warning Russia of severe sanctions should it choose to invade its neighbour.
Biden warned Russia that an invasion against Ukraine will be met with severe economic sanctions from the US — including export control measures that will cripple Russia’s key industries.