Russian military phone calls hacked after soldiers destroyed 3G towers

Irbin, Ukraine - MARCH 7: A woman walks past burning cars on a bridge in Irbin, on March 7, 2022, in Irbin, Ukraine.  The Ukrainian army is currently resisting heavy Russian sieges on some of its cities, such as Irbin and Kiev, as fighting is escalating.  The United Nations estimates that the number of Ukrainian refugees may reach 1.5 million.  (Photo by Diego Herrera/Europe Press via Getty Images)

A woman walks past burning cars on a bridge in Irbin, Ukraine: Have Russian forces destroyed the cellphone towers they need to communicate? (Photo by Diego Herrera/Europe Press via Getty Images)

Russian forces in Ukraine have been “hacked” after they abandoned their secure encrypted phone system, according to investigative journalism organization Bellingcat.

The switch to insecure messages meant that the conversation that revealed the death of Major General Vitaly Gerasimov – the 41st Army Chief of Staff – was able to be intercepted by Ukrainian intelligence.

Russian soldiers shut down their encrypted phone system after destroying the towers and use regular phones with local SIM cards, According to BellingcatIt is an open source investigative journalism organization.

Bellingcat CEO, Christo Grosev, He said in a series of tweets: Idiots tried to use the encoders of the era in Kharkiv, after destroying many 3g cell towers and replacing others with stingray towers. It needs 3g/4g era to communicate.

In the phone call in which the FSB officer assigned to the 41st Army reported the death of his superior in Tula, he said that they had lost all secure communications. So the phone call using the local sim card. Thus the objection.

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Bellingcat specializes in uncovering information about events such as the Salisbury poisoning and events in Syria by analyzing large data sets.

(Twitter)

(Twitter)

In the conflict in Ukraine, the group had previously debunked “organised” Russian excuses for war.

Stingrays are listening devices that are used to replace regular cell towers, so that nearby cell phones connect to a listening device instead.

Era is an encrypted communication system used by the Russian military: such systems mean that military units can communicate without the risk of eavesdropping.

Grosev said, ‘On the call, you hear an FSB officer in Ukraine asking his superior if he can talk through the secure Era system. Chief says IRA is not working.

Vasilkiev, Ukraine - 03/07/2022: High school building destroyed in a Russian military attack.  Russian forces invaded Ukraine on February 24.  So far their attack has caused up to 1.5 million people to flee, sparking criticism and protests from people all over the world.  (Photo by Mykhaylo Palinchak/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

A high school building seen destroyed by a Russian military attack. Russian forces invaded Ukraine on February 24 (Photo by Mykhaylo Palinchak/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

“Era is a very expensive cryptocurrency that was introduced in 2021 with great fanfare. It ensured that it worked “in all circumstances.”

Bellingcat also claims to have identified the officer in the call: Dmitry Shevchenko, a senior officer of the FSB.

The allegations have not been independently verified.

Throughout the conflict, the groups claimed to have intercepted Russian communications, due to the units’ reliance on radios and smartphones.

The Telegraph reported that British intelligence firm Shadobrik claimed to have intercepted messages that showed Russian forces were frustrated and had “deliberately punched holes” in vehicle fuel tanks to avoid reaching the front line.

Read more: The former Russian foreign minister said that Putin is not crazy and will not use nuclear weapons

Some fixed-line internet services were cut in Ukraine during the conflict, as disturbance-tracking organization Netblocks raised concerns about the disconnection of the Zaporizhia nuclear plant.

The shutdown of fixed-line internet and some mobile phone services in and around the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in #Ukraine raises public safety concerns, with radiation levels not being published and the IAEA’s inability to monitor, Netblocks said.

Netblocks warned that disrupted internet connections mean the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant is not being monitored (Twitter)

Netblocks warned that disrupted internet connections mean the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant is not being monitored (Twitter)

But Russian forces are generally believed to be trying to keep mobile phone and internet connections working.

Speaking to Politico, James Lewis, Senior Vice President and Director of the Strategic Technologies Program at Politico’s Center for Strategic and International Studies, said: “If they can do a local shutdown of communications, they will. But in general, they will want the phones to keep working in Kyiv because they can listen to it.

Politico suggested that it was also possible that Russian forces had left Ukrainian commercial networks operating because they depended on them to communicate.

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