It’s a YouTube influencer with more than 250k subscribers openly promoting hacktivist weapons used in cyber-attacks by a nation at war . . . and bringing hacktivism into a new era.
In this video, the influencer is openly promoting a DDoS attack tool called Disbalancer. The Disbalancer Liberator app, once installed, turns your system into a bot that leverages its resources and internet connection to perform DDoS attacks targeting a list of Russian websites curated by the authors of Disbalancer.
According to Pascal Geenens, Radware’s director of threat intelligence, “Hacktivists have been anonymously promoting and educating members on how to use DDoS attack tools in the darker corners of YouTube, but an influencer with over 250k subscribers posting a professionally edited video is bringing hacktivism into a new era. People around the globe are volunteering their systems to be turned it into a mass DDoS weapon of destruction leveraged in a cyber conflict between nations. I'm sympathizing with the people who oppose war propaganda, but I'm concerned how this will evolve beyond the current conflict.” Geenens further explains, “Rules are being rewritten. Is DDoS a crime? A word of caution. Depending on the perspective, DDoS will be considered and prosecuted as a crime.” For example, Russian FSB officers detained a resident of Yalta, in the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol, who was involved in hacker attacks on Russian websites. The 29-year-old system administrator who installed a program to perform hacker attacks from his work computer was arrested. Law enforcers said the man was involved in attacks on the websites of Sberbank, RBC, Interfax, Lenta.ru, RIA Novosti and Rossiyskaya Gazeta. The detainee faces five years in Russian prison.