The war between Israel and Hamas is also raging in the virtual world, with cyberattacks on the rise since the October 7 ground attack. Israeli government and media websites, as well as energy and defense groups, have been targeted by this type of attack, but without data theft or operational paralysis, experts say.
"Hackivist groups that have been working on the war in Ukraine for the past week have shifted their focus to this conflict, with the aim of finding victims, including Western companies, including French ones. But these operations are only communication, not cyber warfare," says the expert from a large cybersecurity company.
"As in the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the number of cyberattacks has increased. But we can't talk about cyberwarfare: it's mostly denial-of-service (DDOS) attacks," an intentional but harmless bottleneck that makes a website inaccessible for a few hours, explains François Deruty, director of intelligence at cybersecurity firm Sekoia.
"Attacks on Israeli websites, which are very well protected, are usually denial-of-service," said Mohammed Boumediane, head of cybersecurity firm Ziwit. According to him, "more big attacks could take place, as thousands of brute force attacks are underway." This process consists of testing password combinations, including denial-of-service attacks.
Another technique used by these "hacktivists" is "defaced" sites. The homepage is replaced with a black screen or propaganda message.
Pro-Palestinian Russian hackers and pro-Israel Indian hackers
"Among the attackers are foreign groups: pro-Palestinian Russian hackers and pro-Israel Indian hackers," adds Sekoia's Francois Deruty. Israeli websites have been victimized by the Russian-language group Anonymous Sudan, which supports Hamas, as well as the Russian group Killnet. In addition, less visible Iranian groups are quietly supporting attacks on Israel, he said.
On the other hand, Indian groups have attacked Palestinian websites. This is a consequence of the diplomatic ties between India and Israel, the Sekoia expert analyses, as well as the relationship between Indian groups and Israeli start-ups that are their suppliers.
- By the Web