Ukraine says group linked to Belarusian intelligence behind cyber-attack on government websites

Kiev believes a group linked to Belarusian intelligence carried out a cyber-attack on Ukrainian government websites last week, using malware similar to those used by a group linked to Russian intelligence, a senior Ukrainian security official said.

Serhiy Demdyuk, deputy secretary of the National Security and Defense Council, told Reuters that Ukraine had blamed the attack, which included threatening messages, on government websites of a group known as UNC 1151.

He added that this attack was a cover for more sabotage behind the scenes.

This comment provides the first detailed analysis by Kiev on the suspects behind the cyber-attack on dozens of websites.

Officials said yesterday that Russia was likely involved, but didn’t provide any details.

The cyber-attack hit a large number of websites, with a warning to Ukrainians saying, “You have to fear and expect the worst,” at a time when Russia is massing its forces near Ukraine’s borders and Kiev and Washington fear that Moscow is planning a new invasion of Ukraine.

“The targeting of sites was just a cover for further acts of sabotage that were taking place behind the scenes, the consequences of which will be felt in the near future,” Demdyuk added in his written comment.

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