Russian RuTube knocked out for second day by VE Day cyberattack
RuTube, Russia’s answer to YouTube, was crippled for a second day on Tuesday by a cyberattack whose timing was tied to this week’s anniversary celebrations of the victory over Nazi Germany in World War II.
Usually filled with video content, RuTube’s site is currently black, with a short message saying: “Warning! The site is undergoing technical work. The site has been attacked. At the moment, the situation is under control. The data users have been registered.”
The attack began on Monday, a major national holiday when Russia commemorated the Soviet victory over Adolf Hitler and President Vladimir Putin gave a speech comparing that struggle to the current war in Ukraine.
“Someone really wanted to stop RuTube from showing the Victory Day parade and celebratory fireworks,” RuTube said. “It’s not a sin to remember the battles our guys won. The battle for RuTube continues.”
He described the cyberattack as the worst in the site’s history.
In a separate incident on Monday, Russian satellite TV menus were hacked to show viewers in Moscow messages about events in Ukraine, including ‘You have blood on your hands’, according to screenshots obtained by Reuters.
State-owned company websites and news websites have been subject to sporadic hacking efforts since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, often to show information that contradicts Moscow’s official line. on what it calls a “special military operation”.
RuTube said a large team was working to restore the service and denied reports that it had lost source code for the website.
The long outage partly explains why Russia has yet to block Alphabet’s YouTube, despite repeated fines and warnings to the US service for taking down some state-backed Russian channels and failing to remove content that Moscow deems it illegal.
Russia restricted access to Twitter and Meta Platform’s Facebook and Instagram in early March.
Critics have previously told Reuters that RuTube, despite rising weekly user numbers in early March as other foreign social media outlets were forced out of the Russian market, still has a long way to go to compete with the video product. from Google.
© Thomson Reuters 2022
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