In July and September, Albania suffered two cyberattacks attributed by the U.S. to Iranian state cyber actors. But Albania is not Iran’s first victim. Among the world’s cyber powers, the Iranians have been among the most aggressive in using hacking for coercion. And while still relatively unskilled, Iran is a dangerous cyber actor.
Many analysts expected Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to include a cyber Armageddon as part of the conflict. So when those expectations didn’t materialize, the initial surprise quickly turned into declarations that Ukraine had won the “cyber war.” But it’s still possible that Moscow will turn up the dial on its cyber operations.
In May of this year, Costa Rica’s newly elected President Rodrigo Chaves declared, “We are at war.” It was significant considering that Costa Rica is one of the few countries in the world that does not have a military. Also atypical is Costa Rica’s opponent in this war: a nonstate hacking organization based in Russia. The organization, Conti ransomware, had taken significant portions of the Costa Rican government’s computer systems offline, threatening the economy and state operations. While the attack likely took months of preparation and planning, it wasn’t revealed until early 2022, when the Conti ransomware group announced that it had [...]