Tag Archives: Anonymous

What Should China Worry About Russia-Ukraine War?

Fact Check : What China Should Worry About Russia Invading Ukraine!

People are sharing a post by Li Guangman on what China should worry about the Russia-Ukraine War.

Take a look at the viral post, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Li Guangman : What China Should Worry About Russia Invading Ukraine!

Chinese and pro-China netizens have been sharing this post by Chinese blogger Li Guangman on what lessons China should learn from the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

It’s a very long post, so feel free to skip to the next section for the facts…

Some worries brought about by the Russia-Ukraine war (says Li Guangman)

After the outbreak of the Russian-Ukrainian war, the robbery behavior in the entire Western world broke many Chinese people’s perceptions, which made me feel a strong and deep worry.

PS. I have no idea who Li Guangman is, but apparently, some Community Party folks think he’s important, and have been sharing his posts.

 

Li Guangman Is Wrong About Why China Should Worry About Russia Invading Ukraine

I have no idea if Li Guangman actually wrote that post, but one thing is for sure – it is full of misinformation.

I’m not going to focus on what lessons China should learn from the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but I will show you what can be easily and factually proven false in that viral post.

Fact #1 : Corporations Do Not Sanction Countries

Li Guangman falsely claimed (intentionally?) that Internet service providers and social media platforms announced sanctions against Russia after they invaded Ukraine.

That never happened, because corporations don’t issue sanctions. Those corporations only decided to stop working with Russia, after Western countries announced sanctions against Russia.

  • Cogent Communications, which is the second-largest Internet connectivity provider in Russia, terminated their contracts there on 4 March 2022 to comply with EU Regulation 2022/350.
  • Lumen terminated their services in Russia on 8 March 2022, to comply with sanction requirements.

Fact #2 : Corporations Chose To Stop Doing Business In Russia

Many corporations decided to stop doing business in Russia, mainly because they are public-listed companies that are answerable to their shareholders, and their customers worldwide.

For many, the limited Russian business they conduct is not worth risking their worldwide business, especially when the rest of the world is stridently against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

  • Automotive : Ford, General Motors, Toyota, Volkswagen and Nissan
  • Aviation : Boeing and Airbus
  • Finance : Visa, Mastercard, American Express, PayPal, Western Union, Moody’s, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup
  • F&B : Burger King, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Nestle, PepsiCo, Starbucks, Yum Brands (KFC and Pizza Hut)
  • Energy : BP, Exxon, Shell, Equinox
  • Big Tech : Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, Apple, Hitachi, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Netflix, Nintendo, Sony, Spotify, TikTok
  • Hotels : Hyatt, Hilton, Marriott

There is also the issue of sanctions – Western sanctions may also prohibit them from selling their products and services to Russia and/or Belarus.

Fact #3 : US Did Not Launch “Disconnection Action” Against Russia

Li Guangman also falsely claimed (intentionally?) that the US launched disconnection action against Russia. That never happened.

The easiest way to do that would be to get ICANN to remove Russian domains from the Internet, which would prevent anyone from accessing any server in Russia.

However, the United States never made such a request. Only Ukraine asked ICANN to do this, but ICANN refused their request.

It is also a very silly claim to make, because it actually benefits the US and Western nations to maintain Internet connectivity to Russia, which allows them to reach out to Russian citizens with the truth.

Fact #4 : Russia Blocked Western Social Media

In fact, Li Guangman (intentionally?) left out the fact that the Russian government itself blocked or restricted access to Western social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

The truth is – it does not benefit Russia to let their citizens access uncensored information about their invasion of Ukraine. That’s why they blocked access to Western social media platforms.

This is where Russia is attempting to mimic China in its control of what information citizens can access. China is the undisputed leader in Internet censorship.

Fact #5 : Russia Prepared To Cut Itself Off The Internet

Li Guangman also (intentionally?) left out the fact that Russia was more than prepared to cut itself from the Internet.

The Russians started working on the ability to cut themselves from the Internet in the early 2010s, testing that ability in 2019 and in subsequent years.

Russian President Vladimir Putin also signed into law, a set of 2019 amendments called the Sovereign Internet Law (Закон о «суверенном интернете»), that lets the government cut Russia off the rest of the Internet.

Fact #6 : SWIFT Is Controlled By EU, Not US

SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications) messaging network is not American, but Belgian, based in La Hulpe, Belgium.

As a cooperative society under Belgian law, SWIFT is owned by its members – financial institutions, not countries. In fact, its current chairman is Yawar Shah of Pakistan, while its CEO is Javier Pérez-Tasso of Spain.

Li Guangman (intentionally?) forgot to point out that the United States and Britain had been pushing for Russia to be banned from SWIFT, but EU nations refused earlier.

In the end, the European Union agreed to remove seven Russian banks from SWIFT, instead of the entire country.

The EU also excluded Sberbank (largest bank in Russia) and Gazprombank from the SWIFT removal, so they could still buy oil from Russia.

All proof that SWIFT is controlled by the EU, not the US.

Fact #7 : SWIFT Is Just A Messaging Service

SWIFT is a messaging system that securely transfers “messages containing the payment instructions between financial institutions involved in a transaction“.

It is not a payment system, and therefore, does not hold any funds. Neither does it perform cleaning or settlement services.

After a payment instruction has been initiated through SWIFT, the corresponding financial institutions must then “settle” the transaction through a payment system, like TARGET2 in Europe.

Fact #8 : SWIFT Removal Is Only An Inconvenience

While removal from SWIFT is a big deal, it is not the end of the world for those seven Russian banks, because it is merely a messaging system.

Banks can use alternative methods like faxes (yes, they still exist!) or alternative messaging systems like Russia’s own SPFS, China’s CIPS and India’s SFMS.

  • VEB is largely focused on domestic projects, and uses SPFS for overseas transactions
  • Sovcombank says that other sanctions already block it from making overseas payments, so the SWIFT removal has no impact
  • Promsvyazbank said that it had prepared for SWIFT removal, so it will not have a significant impact
  • VTB and Otkritie said that they would not be impacted

So Li Guangman’s claim that SWIFT removal is a weapon of war is… absurd and melodramatic.

Fact #9 : No One Ever Said Satellites Are Safe From Attacks

Li Guangman also falsely claimed (intentionally?) that Western nations had earlier claimed that “satellites are safe and will not be attacked“.

No country ever said that. In fact, the United States Space Force was formed, in part, to protect US satellite communications.

The US Space Force Vice Chief of Space Operations, General David Thompson even shared in November 2021 that :

Both China and Russia are regularly attacking US satellites with non-kinetic means, including lasers, radio frequency jammers, and cyber attacks… every single day

Li Guangman seems incredibly naive and ignorant about daily attacks on satellites, because the alternative explanation would be that he knew but intentionally chose to mislead you.

Fact #10 : Anonymous Is Not A Government Organisation

Li Guangman falsely claimed (intentionally?) that Anonymous is “some government organisations”.

  • Anonymous is a decentralised collective of anonymous hactivists… hence, its name.
  • It is not a government organisation.
  • It has previously attacked several Western governments, including the United States
  • Dozens of people associated with Anonymous cyberattacks have been arrested in the US, UK, Australia, the Netherlands, Spain, India and Turkey.

This is common knowledge, so it is peculiar that Li Guangman is so ignorant about Anonymous… or believes that people are stupid enough to believe him.

Fact #11 : Anonymous Did Not Hack Russian Space Agency

Technically, Anonymous did not hack the Russian Space Agency (Roscosmos), which was really hacked by their affiliates – NB65 and v0g3lSec.

They never shut down the Russian space control centre, or took any Russian satellite out of control. All those are lies that Li Guangman apparently concocted.

Roscosmos Chief Executive, Dmitry Rogozin also denied the claim, saying that “The information of these scammers and petty swindlers is not true. All our space activity control centers are operating normally.

So you have to ask yourself – why would Li Guangman lie about this? These are all on public record. Does he believe that you are so gullible that you would believe everything he says?

Read more : Anonymous Affiliates Are Attacking Russian Space Agency!

Fact #12 : Sanctioned Assets Were Frozen, Not Seized

Li Guangman falsely claimed (intentionally?) that the assets of Russian government and private individuals were looted (stolen) by Western banks / governments.

As part of sanctions against the Russian government, Western countries also sanctioned certain Russian individuals, including the super-rich Russian oligarchs.

However, their assets were frozen, not seized. At least, not yet.

All individuals sanctioned by the US Treasury Department, for example, will have their assets frozen. Those assets would be locked up, and cannot be sold or accessed in any way.

The owner has to get a licence from the department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control to do anything – even to just pay property taxes, or fix a leaking roof.

That’s different from the government actually seizing the frozen assets – this requires the government to first prove that they are linked to a crime. Until that happens, the assets have not been “looted”.

According to Michael Parker, head of the anti-money laundering and sanctions practice at Ferrari & Associates :

These cases need to be built, there has to be a showing of some sort of underlying theory of forfeiture, there has to be a reason that they are forfeited. The mere fact that somebody the United States has said is a target owns this asset isn’t enough to form a basis of seizure under U.S. law.

Fact #13 : Only Assets Of Sanctioned Individuals Were Frozen

Li Guangman also falsely claimed (intentionally?) that ALL assets belonging to the Russian government and private individuals were stolen by Western banks / government.

Not only were they not stolen, only assets belonging to sanctioned individuals and the Russian government were frozen. The assets of other Russian individuals were not affected.

Chinese netizens need not be overly concerned about their money stashed in Western banks.

Even if China decides to do something similarly evil like Russia, and invade another country, Western banks will only be forced to freeze the assets of those in power, like Chinese President Xi Jinping, for example.

Fact #14 : Less Than US$1 Trillion Frozen So Far

Li Guangman also falsely claimed (intentionally?) that Western countries froze US$8 trillion worth of assets.

On 5 March, UK Minister Jacob Rees-Mogg tweeted a chart that showed the value of Russian bank assets that were being sanctioned. That was actually criticised as being overly optimistic, but let’s assume it’s true.

That’s a total of £537.6 billion pounds, or US$703.7 billion. Even if you add US$15 billion of assets targeted by sanctioning seven Russian oligarchs, the total is still under US$719 billion.

So Li Guangman overstated the amount of sanctioned Russian assets by some 11X… if not more.

Fact #15 : Switzerland Only Adopts Military Neutrality

Li Guangman appears to be confused by the concept of “Swiss neutrality”, which refers to military neutrality – Switzerland will not be involved in armed or political conflicts between other states.

Switzerland, however, pursues an active foreign policy, and is frequently involved in peace-building processes globally.

Fact #16 : Switzerland Has Adopted EU Sanctions Since 1998

Li Guangman appears to be living in the past, claiming that Switzerland abandoned its neutrality to sanction Russia.

While Switzerland declined to be part of EU, it has been adopting EU-only sanctions for the past 24 years!

  • 1998 : EU sanctions against Yugoslavia
  • 2000 : EU sanctions against Myanmar
  • 2002 : EU sanctions against Zimbabwe
  • 2006 : EU sanctions against Uzbekistan and Belarus
  • 2022 : EU sanctions against Russia and Belarus

Fact #17 : Tech Companies Have To Comply With Sanctions

Li Guangman appears to be surprised that tech companies are complying with sanctions.

Of course, tech companies have to comply with sanctions. If they don’t, they would be legally liable and punished with fines and other legal actions.

In fact, Russia just announced sanctions against a wide range of American officials, including US President Joe Biden. They are expecting companies to comply with those sanctions as well.

We should also remember that China imposed sanctions of her own on US individuals and organisations, and expected companies to comply with their sanctions.

Did he expect companies to only comply with Russian and Chinese sanctions, but not those from Western countries?

Fact #18 : Russia Started The Conflict

Li Guangman claimed that Russia invading of Ukraine is “a real all-out war waged by the entire Western bloc against Russia“. What utter nonsense.

Western nations have repeatedly warned the world that Russia was planning to invade Ukraine since November 2021, even as Russia and pro-Russia forces derided them.

As early as December 2021, US President Joe Biden even threatened Russia with sweeping Western economic sanctions if it invaded Ukraine.

Russia repeatedly denied it was going to invade Ukraine, dismissing those warnings as “hysteria”. But they were lying, and ultimately invaded Ukraine on 24 February 2022.

So let me be clear to Li Guangman and his supporters – the invasion of Ukraine was a war that Russia actively chose to initiate.

This was not a war “waged by the entire Western bloc against Russia“. This was a war that Russia waged against Ukraine.

Until today, the United States and NATO have repeatedly refused to directly defend Ukraine against attacks by Russia. So to call it an “all-out war” is also ludicrous.

This fake news appears to be part of the disinformation campaign conducted by the Chinese 50 Cent Army (wumao, 五毛) to support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Please help us FIGHT FAKE NEWS by sharing this fact check out!

 

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He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Anonymous Affiliates Are Attacking Russian Space Agency!

After Anonymous declare a cyberwar against Russia, their affiliates are going after the Russian space agency, Roscosmos.

Here is what they accomplished so far!

 

Anonymous Affiliate NB65 Attacked Russian Space Agency!

On 28 February 2022, the hacking group – Anonymous Network Battalion 65′ (NB65), which hacked and released over 40,000 files from the Russian Nuclear Safety Institute.

They then turned their attention to the Russian Space Agency, claiming to shut down the WS02 Vehicle Monitoring System server at the Roscosmos Control Center on 1 March 2022.

The Russian Space Agency sure does love their satellite imaging.

Better yet they sure do love their Vehicle Monitoring System.

The WS02 was deleted, credentials were rotated and the server is shut down.

Network Battalion isn’t going to give you the IP, that would be too easy, now wouldn’t it?

Have a nice Monday fixing your spying tech. Glory to Ukraine.

We wont [sic] stop until you stop dropping bombs, killing civilians and trying to invade.

Go the fuck back to Russia.

However, Roscosmos Chief Executive, Dmitry Rogozin denied the claim, saying that “The information of these scammers and petty swindlers is not true. All our space activity control centers are operating normally.

 

Anonymous Affiliate v0g3lSec Hacked Russian Space Agency Website!

On 3 March 2022, another Anonymous affiliate, v0g3lSec, hacked a website owned by the Russian Space Agency – http://uv.ikiweb.ru/.

This appears to be the official website for the World Space Observatory-Ultraviolet (WSO-UV) telescope, also known as the Spektr-UV. It is still down as of 4 March 2022.

 

Anonymous Affiliate v0g3lSec Leaked Russian Space Agency Files!

On 4 March 2022, v0g3lSec released files that were hacked from a private service hosted by the Russian space agency.

The files apparently contained data from Luna – a joint programme between Roscosmos and the European Space Agency (ESA).

  • The leaked data consisted of 261 items, with a size of 729 gigabytes.
  • The executable files (.exe) are from 2012, with a timestamp of 2012-12-20 18:18:57.
  • Most of the documents are from 2009 to 2012, so the files are pretty old.

This suggests that the files that v0g3lSec stole were old data archived by Roscosmos. While it is a technical success, it is unlikely to have any actual effect.

 

Roscosmos Chief Threatens ISS + War

Roscosmos chief, Rogozin, suggested that sanctions against Russia could result in the destruction of the International Space Station (ISS).

If you block cooperation with us, who will save the ISS from an uncontrolled deorbit and fall into the United States or Europe?

Rogozin also said that any cyberattack on Russia’s satellites would be considered casus belli – a cause for war.

However, it is unknown how Roscosmos or Russia plans to declare or effect war against Anonymous, or its affiliates.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Anonymous Cyberwar Against Russia : 28 February 2022

Here are the latest cyberattacks by the hacktivist group, Anonymous, in their cyberwar against Russia!

 

Anonymous Launches Cyberwar Against Russia!

On 22 February 2022, Anonymous lobbed a warning shot at both Russia and China, hacking an official Chinese website and a Russian Modbus device.

After the Russian invasion started on 24 February, Anonymous announced that they would also begin “gearing up for action” :

#Anonymous has always been against war, and against colonialism. We’ve seen how unfettered power decimates the weak, only having its own self interests in mind. We stand with the people, not the governments of the world.
Anonymous condemns the attacks on the Ukrainian people.

There are many #Anonymous accounts gearing up for action against the imperialist state of Russia, and we will be retweeting their endeavors.

The next day, Anonymous announced that they have started attacking the Russian government.

#Anonymous is currently involved in operations against the Russian Federation. Our operations are targeting the Russian government. There is an inevitability that the private sector will most likely be affected too. While this account cannot claim to speak for the whole (con)

Read more : Anonymous fires Warning Shot at China, Russia over Ukraine!

 

Anonymous Cyberwar Successes Against Russia!

Here is the latest list of cyberattacks that Anonymous successfully conducted in their cyberwar against Russian.

25 February 2022

26 February 2022

  • Anonymous took down several Russian government websites, including the Kremlin, State Duma, and Ministry of Defense.
  • Anonymous “retrieved” and leaked 200 GB of emails from Tetraedr – a Belarusian arms manufacturer, including blueprints of the SAMs (Surface-to-Air Missiles) they manufacture.

27 February 2022

  • Anonymous took down the Chechen Republic government website : chechnya.gov.ru
    Note : This came after multiple reports of Chechen soldiers being deployed to Ukraine.
  • Anonymous shut down gas supply provided by Tvingo Telecom in Russia. Tvingo Telecom is owned by Rostelecom, a Russian state owned telecommunications company.

28 February 2022

  • Anonymous took down several official Belarus government websites :
    – Belarus Ministry of Communications and Information : mpt.gov.by
    – Belarus State Authority for Military Industry : vpk.gov.by
    – Belarus Military : mil.by
  • Anonymous took down several more Russian state and state-linked websites :
    – Pension Fund of the Russian Federation : pfr.gov.ru
    – Russian Public Services portal : gosuslugi.ru
    – Kremlin website (again) : Kremlin.ru
    – Russian Federal Customs Service : customs.gov.ru
    – Russian government website : government.ru
    – Moscow city + mayor website : mos.ru
    – Tass news agency website : Tass.ru
  • The hacking group GNG – an Anonymous affiliate – hacked and leaked a Sberbank database
  • Anonymous Network Battalion 65′ (nB65) hacked and released 40,000 files from the Russian Nuclear Safety Institute.

I will keep updating this article, as and when Anonymous announces their successes against Russia.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Anonymous fires Warning Shot at China, Russia over Ukraine!

The hacktivist group, Anonymous, just fired a warning shot at both China and Russia over the invasion of Ukraine!

 

Anonymous fires Warning Shot at China, Russia over Ukraine!

The hacktivist group, Anonymous, just hacked a Chinese state website, and a logic controller in Russia, as a warning shot to both countries over the invasion of Ukraine.

On Tuesday, 22 February 2022, Anonymous hacked the Chinese Culture website (www.chineseculture.com.cn), replacing its content with a page showing its logo, and the Guy Fawkes mask.

The hacked Chinese Culture website was taken offline, but you can still see the hacked page through the Wayback Machine.

The hacked page includes the YouTube video – It Might Break Your Pinky Heart – the famous music video by Malaysian singer-songwriter, Namewee, that mocks the Chinese government.

Read more : Anonymous Launches Cyberwar Against Russia!

After a video about an old MIT experimental antiviral approach called DRACO (Double-stranded RNA Activated Caspase Oligomerizer), and a reference to Operation Samatha Smith, the hacked page warned Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, with a warning shot in the form of “a small hack”.

However sadly because Putin has burned the bridge and reneged the Minsk deal by prematurely recognising separatist territories as independent, instead of waiting until the conclusion of UN interim administration period and if they vote overwhelmingly for independence per that plan, Anonymous decides to make good some of its threats by conducting a small hack on a Modbus device which we intend as a warning shot.

The above Modbus device isn”t located in countries friendly to the US and Taiwan, nor in neutral countries that want nothing with these. Instead, it is in places like China or somewhere like it.

You can make stupid threats like a spoiled child, but remember that Anonymous never have restrictions that says that only homo sapiens can be part of it.

Sony learnt the hard way in 2011 that a part of Anonymous can finish what a totally different part had started!

The Modbus device was later confirmed to be a Schneider Electric Modicon M251 logic controller located in Russia.

 

Anonymous Will Formally Attack Russia Over Ukraine Invasion!

According to Taiwan News, which reached out to Anonymous, their representative said that they were previously “playing nice and not give them an excuse to start a war“, but now that missiles had been fired on Ukraine, “we are taking off the gloves altogether.

That representative also said, “Anonymous will formally attack Russian websites or devices later” in retaliation for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Anonymous threat on the Chinese Culture website ended with its signature quote in English, Russian and Chinese :

We are Anonymous
We are legion
We do not forgive
We do not forget
Expect us!
Мы анонимы
Мы легион
Мы не прощаем
мы не забываем
Ждите нас!
我们是匿名者
我们是军团
我们不原谅
我们不会忘记
期待我们

Anonymous did not explicitly say why they are targeting China over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but it seems obvious that they believe that China is partly responsible for Russia’s military action.

Perhaps they felt that indirect support by the Chinese, as well as their propaganda effort, gave Russia some leeway and economic support in attacking Ukraine.

Read more : Chinese Media Accidentally Leaks Ukraine Censorship Order!

 

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Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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