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Despite the rise in cyber attacks as a response to western involvement in the Ukraine-Russia war, Israel is still the most targeted nation by hacktivists, according to new analysis.
Between February and April, Israel was the primary target by pro-Islamic hacktivists, accounting for 11% of total attacks, claims a report released by Radware’s security research center.
Hacktivists targeted the country with Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, website defacements, and attempts at stealing and leaking sensitive information. Mysterious Team, Anonymous Sudan, and Team Insane PK were the most active hacker groups, targeting mostly travel, education, and government institutions, according to a report by Cyber News.
“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has ushered in a whole new wave of not only patriotic and political hacktivism, but also hacktivism in general. Modern-day hacktivism with its barrage of denial-of-service attacks is bolder, more determined, and more media-driven than ever before,” said Pascal Geenens, Radware’s director of threat intelligence.
While motives behind hacktivism differ between groups, one of the most common reasons behind conducting cyber attacks is due to religious and political disagreements.
Although some of the methods used by hacktivists may be deemed illegal or unethical, hacktivists justify their actions as a means to promote social or political change and hold powerful organizations and governments accountable for their actions.
Additionally, Pro-Palestinian hacktivists have constantly targeted Israel. In 2013, Anonymous started an annual coordinated cyberattack #OpIsrael that targeted Israeli websites, including those of government, military, and financial institutions, as a way to protest against Israeli authorities. This year attacks intensified after the violent clashes with Israeli authorities in Al-Aqsa Mosque.