August 18, 2022
RuTube access reportedly restored by Russian cyber experts after 3-day outage

Access to Russian video-hosting site RuTube was restored on Wednesday after a three-day outage, following a cyberattack that sought the attention of expert cybersecurity teams and called the service’s durability into question.

Moscow has long sought to improve its home Internet infrastructure, even separating itself from the global Internet during trials last summer, but its technology solutions need to be strengthened. The pressure has mounted ever since the West began imposing unprecedented sanctions against Russia over the conflict in Ukraine.

RuTube’s customary homepage, replete with video content, reappeared on Wednesday evening, having been inaccessible since early Monday morning, the day Russia celebrated the anniversary of its victory over Nazi Germany in World War II.

During the outage, a brief message on the site read: “Attention! Site is undergoing technical work. Site was attacked. Situation is currently under control. User data saved.”

RuTube on Wednesday said it had brought in several different experts to investigate the attack and repair the damage, including a team from the specialist security center at Russian cybersecurity firm Positive Technologies, which it said was That she was working on the issues for two days.

The Vedomosti newspaper cited a positive technology director, Alexey Novikov, as saying that RuTube was subjected to a targeted attack aimed at disabling the service and that it could take three weeks to investigate and respond to the incident. ,

“We’ve got to grips with the original toolkit being used by hackers,” Denis Godenko, head of Positive Technologies’ information security threat response department, said in a video message on Telegram on Wednesday.

“There is still a lot of work to do because the infrastructure of RuTube is huge and complex.”

RuTube said that 99.5 percent of the video library was available for users to watch, but the search and comment functions still needed to be restored.

The episode highlights how dependent Russia is on YouTube, which has about 90 million monthly users in the country, and offers clues as to why Moscow hasn’t blocked the US service yet, a fate that other foreign social media platforms.

Anton Gorelkin, deputy head of the State Duma Parliamentary Committee on Information Policy, stressed the importance of Rutube being able to withstand future hacking attempts.

“I think the company will draw conclusions from this story and seriously reconsider its approach to protecting its infrastructure,” Gorelkin wrote on Telegram. “We need our own strong national video-hosting site.”

© Thomson Reuters 2022

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