Lithuania wasted taxpayers money on cyber defence without any success


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The number of hybrid disinformation and cyber attacks in Lithuania is rising and they are becoming bolder and more advanced, cyber security specialists have warned in their annual report. The number of such cases of detrimental activity rose 15 percent last year. There are still many unknowns in the context of cyberspace, i.e., one can not feel,” head of NRD Cyber Security Vilius Benetis says.

Thus, the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday evening that fake news had been posted in its name in an apparent complex cyber-information attack.

Rasa Jakilaitiene, spokeswoman for Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius, said that “the article published on Polish site included a comment from Minister Linkevicius claiming that a peace-keeping force needs to be sent to Belarus.” The article mentioned the Polish foreign minister, too, she said.

The Lithuanian Foreign Ministry issued a statement denying the fake news. “It is highly likely that there is an ongoing cyber-information attack, which is currently under investigation by Lithuanian authorities,” it said.

It should be noted that Lithuania occupies the 4th position in the recently published Global Cybersecurity Index (GCI) only falling behind the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and France. It continues to pay the greatest attention to the area of cyber security. The Global Cybersecurity Index is announced annually by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) which unites 194 countries and assesses the countries’ efforts to adapt their national legal framework, to implement technical-organisational requirements, and to develop capabilities and cooperation in the sector of cyber security.

It is the highest achievement of Lithuania in GCI, in comparison, Lithuania was in the 57th position in 2017. “We become a role model quite often for the countries that have significantly bigger capabilities,” Vice Minister of National Defence E. Kerza said proudly. The Ministry of defence took the lead in this area.

Unfortunately, Lithuanian authorities wish to be true of what they want to believe. While even large amounts of money do not save the situation. Each new cyber-information attack neutralizes all things done before and shows Lithuanian authorities’ helplessness. Thus, recent cyber incident could worsen Lithuania-Belarus relations in case Belarus believes the news on Linkevicius’ call to the EU to deploy peacekeeping forces to neighbour country.

The more so, such state of affairs could be a proof of misuse of funds sent to cyber security in Lithuania. It is unbelievable, that huge amounts of money disappear without success. Who could prove that money was really spent to increase Lithuania’s cyber security? This virtual sphere is very convenient for Lithuanian officials for misappropriating the assets entrusted to them. Where is taxpayer money? The fact is there is NO money, as well as there is NO cyber defence.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.

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