UK OFFICE : +44 (0)1260 273 802
BRUSSELS OFFICE : +32 (0)2 895 5709

UK OFFICE : +44 (0)1260 273 802
BRUSSELS OFFICE : +32 (0)2 895 5709

Cyber attack hits Ukrainian presidential site
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko © Senat Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej

Cyber-attack hits Ukrainian presidential site

17/05/17Government

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko’s official website has been hit by an ‘organised’ cyber-attack from Russia, his administration has said.

It said it was Russia’s response to Poroshenko’s decree prohibiting some of Russia’s largest social media networks and net services popular in Ukraine.

Kiev provided no evidence of Russia’s involvement in the attack.

There was no immediate comment from the Russian authorities on the Ukrainian allegations.

The Ukrainian presidential administration said the situation was ‘under control’, and there was ‘no threat to the work of the website’.

Several hours after the administration’s statement the website was working normally.

Ukraine’s decision on 16 May to impose the ban on Russian sites is a significant enhancement of sanctions on Russia for its annexation of Crimea in 2014 and alleged involvement in the continuing conflict in eastern Ukraine.

Those targeted include social networks VK.com and Odnoklassniki, search engine Yandex and the Mail.ru email service.

Ukrainian service providers have been ordered to block access to the sites.

The companies’ offices in Ukraine will also face asset freezes and other restrictions, although it was not immediately clear how the prohibition on the services would come into force and whether Ukraine had the technical means to enforce it.

The president’s move to push through a decision by Ukraine’s national security council could prove controversial, as VK.com alone has up to 14 million users in Ukraine, and Odnoklassniki is also widely popular.

Russia’s foreign ministry condemned the ban, accusing Ukraine of trying to create an ‘authoritarian state’.