Russian Cyberwar Against the US

Russian cyberwar
Russian cyberwar against Ukraine is a glimpse into what the US might face.

As tension rise during the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, there is a growing concern regarding the United States response. After all, we are the world’s superpower. Our response as a nation could spark a Russian cyberwar, world war, or leave a country to fall to a dictator.

Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing.

John Stuart Mill

It can be universally agreed that a kinetic war with Russia would be bad and no one desires that outcome. This is why the US and other allies have imposed sanctions. Sanctioning Russian products, services, energy, and banking will hinder Putin’s ability to fight the war. The more costly this war becomes, the more likely the Russian people are to display dissatisfaction with the decisions their leader has made.

Imposing sanctions is likely to cause a retaliatory response from Putin though and if recent events have taught us anything, it is that Russia is willing to fight. The question on everyone’s mind is:

What happens when the Russian cyberwar machine aims its sights on the US?

Russia’s cyberwar machine has attacked Ukraine for years before the kinetic warfare operations started. A decade ago, Sandworm hit Western Ukraine with the first-ever cyberattack to cause a blackout. It was an unprecedented act of cyberwar that left a quarter-million Ukrainians sitting in the dark without lights.

This year, the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) warned IT and cyber security professionals around the nation to be prepared for similar attacks in all business sectors. Image the impact\chaos if the US power grid, healthcare systems, SaaS providers, internet providers, or phone service providers were attacked in tandem. Power, internet, and phone system outages across the US alone could cause significant safety and financial impacts.

Hospitals could be unable to provide life-saving CT or MRI scans if servers were attacked. Patients could die without hospital equipment being online. Police, fire, and ambulances could be left useless if phone carriers ceased to work. The price of goods would skyrocket if oil refineries were offline. We would end up without produce in the stores. Businesses could close due to a lack of internet, power, or the software providers they use for day-to-day operations.

The American economy is based on our country’s ability to conduct business operations. It is important now more than ever, that businesses take a serious look at their IT and cyber security standards in their organizations.

“The U.S. is an incredibly target-rich environment for any adversary because of the sprawling decentralized nature of both its public and private sector. Put differently: Small and medium size enterprises are not outside the crosshairs. “

Frank J. Cilluffo

SUURV recommends all businesses work to reduce their attack surface, maximize their ability to respond should an event occur, and validate their disaster recovery plans. We tell organizations all the time, most breaches occur due to poor IT hygiene. Below are a few quick security suggestions to help defend against the Russian cyberwar machine.

Quick Security Suggestions

Good IT Hygiene

  • 2FA on SaaS Platforms
  • Password Change Policy
  • Asset Management
  • Device Encryption
  • SPAM Filtering on Email
  • DNS Filtering
  • Managed Antivirus

Response Readiness

  • Cyber Security Training
  • Remote Device Wipe Capability
  • Intrusion Detection

Disaster Planning

  • Cloud, Offline, and Local backups
  • O365 Backups
  • Time to restore testing
  • Work from home strategies

Give us a call if you would like a free IT audit evaluation.

Russian cyberwar against the US is a legitimate threat American business owners need to take seriously. It is Russian today, China tomorrow. Protect your business, protect the economy, and protect our country.

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Shane Morris

Shane is the CEO of SUURV Technologies, a managed IT service provider. He's passionate about consulting with business leaders over how to align their business processes with the best technological solutions available. He's helped many scale their growth by increasing efficiency and reducing costs. He loves hunting, extreme physical activity, and most of all, his wife and children.

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