Satellite Systems Security Needs To Be Reinforced Against Cyber Attack

Three months following the disruption of the Viasat satellite communications system at the outset of the attempted invasion of Ukraine, there are continued concerns about the adequate protection of the ground systems and networks that provide many entry points for cyber attackers. 

Russia’s continued attack on Ukraine has been under constant surveillance by satellites, highlighting their importance in the conflict and how vulnerable satellite systems are to cyber attack.

US Space Force Lt. Gen.Chance Saltzman, deputy chief of space operations for nuclear and cyber, said he had been briefed about Russian cyber attacks which were aimed at Ukrainian users of satellite Internet services. “One of the observations that I would offer on that is that, if you think the only way to dismantle space capabilities is by shooting down satellites, you’re missing the bigger picture … as these cyber attacks are on ground networks,” Saltzman told Spacenews.

The US State Department has blamed Russia for a cyber attack on Viasat’s KA-SAT satellite Internet network that took place a day before Russian forces attacked Ukraine. The attack disabled user terminals in Ukraine and across Europe that provide Internet services to private citizens. Viasat said the satellite itself was not targeted and the attack affected 40,000 user terminals, a small fraction of the hundreds of thousands of customers of the network. Viasat said services have since been restored.

In a separate development, Space-X owner Elon Musk has tweeted that Russian hackers have been trying to take down SpaceX’s Starlink broadband service the company is providing in Ukraine.

If the ground infrastructure that supports satellites becomes the main target, it will be important to have “assured networks that are defended by cyber professionals, or we’re not going to be effective in accomplishing our missions,” Saltzman said. “I think that’s a critical point that we’ve learned from this environment.” 

Lt. Gen. Stephen Whiting, commander of the US Space Force’s Space Operations Command, told SpaceNews that the likeliest form of attack facing satellite networks is on the ground. “Cyberspace is the soft underbelly of our global space networks.” he said. 

In response, the Space Operations Command is retraining cyber security specialists who protect desktop systems at Space Force bases to more demanding roles defending military satellite networks. Saltzman said more time will be needed to evaluate the events in Ukraine as the conflict continues. 

Russia can use its satellites to attack other satellites physically and virtually in orbit, as made evident in 2021 when it fired a missile from one of its satellites to successfully destroy another of its satellites.

Spacenews:    Spacenews:    Reuters:      Fierce Electronics:     NYPost:    The CyberwireC4ISRNET:     

You Might Also Read: 

Cyberspace & Outer Space Are New Frontiers For National Security:

 

« Cyber Attacks On Ukraine Step Up The Pressure
How To Build A Successful Zero Trust Strategy For Data Analytics Users »

CyberSecurity Jobsite
Perimeter 81

Directory of Suppliers

Syxsense

Syxsense

Syxsense brings together endpoint management and security for greater efficiency and collaboration between IT management and security teams.

ON-DEMAND WEBINAR: How to improve your security posture with a web application firewall (WAF)

ON-DEMAND WEBINAR: How to improve your security posture with a web application firewall (WAF)

Watch this webinar to discover how a WAF goes beyond a standard firewall and helps you meet security industry compliance.

CYRIN

CYRIN

CYRIN® Cyber Range. Real Tools, Real Attacks, Real Scenarios. See why leading educational institutions and companies in the U.S. have begun to adopt the CYRIN® system.

IT Governance

IT Governance

IT Governance is a leading global provider of information security solutions. Download our free guide and find out how ISO 27001 can help protect your organisation's information.

CSI Consulting Services

CSI Consulting Services

Get Advice From The Experts: * Training * Penetration Testing * Data Governance * GDPR Compliance. Connecting you to the best in the business.

CD Networks

CD Networks

CDNetworks is a global content delivery network with a fully integrated cloud security solution, offering unparalleled speed, security and reliability for the almost instant delivery of web content.

CERT.BY

CERT.BY

The National Computer Emergency Response Team of the Republic of Belarus.

EC-Council

EC-Council

EC-Council is a member-based organization that certifies individuals in various e-business and information security skills.

CyberESI

CyberESI

CyberESI is a Managed Security Service Provider providing 24x7 remote security monitoring and management of your mission-critical networks.

Jamcracker

Jamcracker

Jamcracker is a cloud services management and cloud governance solutions company, with more than a decade of experience providing industry leading software and services.

Nok Nok Labs

Nok Nok Labs

Nok Nok is a market leader in next generation authentication for cloud, mobile and IoT applications.

Arcanum Information Security (AIS)

Arcanum Information Security (AIS)

Arcanum Information Security is a specialist Information Assurance Consultancy and a leading provider of Cyber Security services to UK Defence, UK Government, Enterprise businesses and SMEs.

Evidence Talks Ltd

Evidence Talks Ltd

A leading forensic computing authority developing unique digital forensic technologies. Tools that detect potential terrorists & criminals & used by the military, enforcement & intelligence commmunity

LMG Security

LMG Security

LMG Security is a cybersecurity consulting, research and training firm.

Tempest

Tempest

TEMPEST is a leading provider of IT products and services including solutions for network and application security.

Attila Security

Attila Security

Attila Security is a leader in endpoint security, providing visibility, control and threat defense across physical, virtual, and cloud applications.

Verodin

Verodin

Verodin is a business platform that provides organizations with the evidence needed to measure, manage and improve their cybersecurity effectiveness.

WWPass

WWPass

WWPass is a global cybersecurity company that provides password-less authentication and client-side encryption technology.

Macomb-OU Incubator

Macomb-OU Incubator

Macomb-Oakland University Incubator supports startup and emerging companies in the niche industries of defense, homeland security, advanced manufacturing and technology.

Evolution Equity Partners

Evolution Equity Partners

Evolution Equity Partners is an international venture capital investor partnering with exceptional entrepreneurs to develop market leading cyber-security and enterprise software companies.

Cloudsec Asia

Cloudsec Asia

Cloudsec Asia is Thailand's top-ranked cybersecurity consultant company. We offers security services to ensure that all your IT assets are reliable, accessible, and secure.