MEMRI Resources, Displaced Ukrainians, NSO Spyware, More: Ukraine Update, March 23, 2022


MEMRI: MEMRI Launches New Website Dedicated To The Russia-Ukraine War . “The Middle East Media Research Institute’s new Research On The Russia-Ukraine War page, and its Trending page, both highlight the most recent MEMRI research on the conflict: reports and clips from the MEMRI Russian Media Studies Project (RMSP), as well as content from the MEMRI Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM), Domestic Terrorism Threat Monitor (DTTM), South Asia Studies Project (SASP), and Chinese Media Studies Project (CMSP) on global reactions to the crisis.”

WLAX: New website helps displaced Ukrainians find each other. “As the war between Russia and Ukraine carries on, more people are losing contact with loved ones. A new website helps make it easier for people to check in.”


Washington Post: The rise of the Twitter spies. “Armed with day jobs or coursework, the self-proclaimed open source intelligence — or ‘OSINT’ — community tracks every movement of the Russian and Ukrainian militaries online. Five weeks into the war, their findings are impacting strategy on the ground. Mykhailo Fedorov, Ukraine’s minister of digital transformation, said in an interview with The Washington Post that the community’s work is crucial for his country — so much so that a Ukrainian government app, called Diia, now allows citizens to field geotagged pictures and videos of Russian troop movements.”

Byline Times: How Russia’s Disinformation Apparatus Ran Aground in Ukraine. “Unlike in Syria, Russian disinformation in Ukraine has so far failed to gain traction. Some of the reasons are specific to Ukraine: Russia’s aggression is too blatant to be covered up by propaganda; Ukraine’s long exposure to Russian disinformation has left it in a heightened state of preparedness; and, most significantly, the effectiveness of Ukrainian messaging and the character of the messenger.”

Romea: Russia distorting photos for propaganda purposes, Roma nonprofits alert Ukrainian authorities. “Photographs from Lviv, Ukraine in which several Romani people are shown as bound with their backs against pillars and with green paint on their faces are being disseminated through social media along with the untrue claim that the individuals in the photographs are internally displaced people from Kyiv who were unjustifiably attacked by local Ukrainians immediately upon arrival in Lviv. However, as the news server has discovered, the actual context of the photos is something else.”


New York Times: Israel, Fearing Russian Reaction, Blocked Spyware for Ukraine and Estonia. “The Eastern European countries had sought to buy Pegasus, spyware made by the Israeli firm NSO, to carry out intelligence operations against Russia.”

Bloomberg: Russian Hackers Targeting Humanitarian Efforts, Ukraine Says. “A top Ukrainian cybersecurity official said Wednesday that Russian hackers are attacking logistical lines in the war-torn country, including those delivering food and humanitarian support. Victor Zhora, deputy chief of Ukraine’s information protection service, said the cyberattacks are mostly linked to Russia’s ground and air campaign. He declined to provide specifics on the attacks, citing security concerns.”

WTRF: West Virginia Senator wants Russia to be banned from Facebook. “West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin recently sent a letter to the CEO of Facebook/ Meta, Mark Zuckerberg, to urge the social media giant to disarm Russian President Vladimir Putin’s campaign of dangerous disinformation by banning Russian state-controlled media outlets on Meta platforms.”

Military Times: Posting POW footage on social media may constitute human rights violation. “The types of being shared media seem to confirm what much of the world believes about the conflict as the international community largely condemns Russia and rallies around Ukraine. But there is no way to independently verify that the Russian troops filmed are not under duress or saying what they feel they need to in order to survive. Showing videos of POWs, regardless of the content or under what conditions it is obtained, is a violation of international law, experts say.”

Politico: The world holds its breath for Putin’s cyberwar. “Before Vladimir Putin launched his invasion a month ago, security experts warned that the coming conflict could redefine cyber warfare — both for Ukraine and for the United States. But so far, cyberattacks have been of limited importance in a war that Russia has waged using tanks, rockets, missiles and bombardments of civilians.”


University of Pennsylvania Almanac: Cyberattacks, Russia, and the Changing Face of War in the 21st Century. “To learn more about how cyberattacks have shaped modern warfare and how countries are adapting their strategies, Penn Today spoke with Heli Tiirmaa-Klaar, a Perry World House visiting fellow and director of the Digital Society Institute at the European School of Management and Technology. During the past 15 years, Ms. Tiirmaa-Klaar has led efforts to coordinate, prepare, and implement cybersecurity strategies across the European Union and also helped prepare the NATO Cyber Defense Policy.”

The Japan News: Cybersecurity scholar: Russian invasion of Ukraine stirs up ‘cyberchaos’ of information warfare . “The ongoing information warfare amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is in a state of ‘cyberchaos,’ according to Keio University Prof. Motohiro Tsuchiya, who specializes in international relations and cybersecurity. He stressed in an interview with The Yomiuri Shimbun that the Japanese government should not only toughen cybersecurity, but also thoroughly examine the ongoing cyber warfare and extract lessons from it, so as to better cope with similar contingencies in the future.”

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