Putin Losing Information War in Ukraine, Says UK Spy Chief
i24 News – Russia is failing to gain ground in the cyber realm against Ukraine, some six months after its invasion of the country, the head of Britain’s GCHQ intelligence service said Friday.
In an op-ed in The Economist, Jeremy Fleming wrote that both countries are using their cyber capabilities in the war in Ukraine, but that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s tactics are “irresponsible and indiscriminate.”
“So far, President Putin has comprehensively lost the information war in Ukraine and in the West. Although that’s cause for celebration, we should not underestimate how Russian disinformation is playing out elsewhere in the world,” Fleming wrote.
“Just as with its land invasion, Russia’s initial online plans appear to have fallen short. The country’s use of offensive cyber tools has been irresponsible and indiscriminate.”
Fleming noted that Russia is using the same playbook as it did in Syria and the Balkans, and said online disinformation is a major part of Russia’s strategy.
However, the GCHQ has been able to intercept and provide warnings in time, he said.
Without going into much detail, Fleming asserted that the UK’s National Cyber Force could respond to Russian cyberattacks by deploying a UK military unit that employs offensive cyber tools.
In June, the United States warned of elevated cyber threats in the wake of Moscow’s assault on Kyiv, as Western nations began to experience a rise in cyber attacks on financial institutions since the war broke out.