• KGS/USD = 0.01138 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09310 0.43%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01138 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09310 0.43%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01138 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09310 0.43%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01138 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09310 0.43%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01138 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09310 0.43%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01138 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09310 0.43%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01138 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09310 0.43%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01138 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09310 0.43%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

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Large-Scale Cyberattacks on Kazakhstan Continue

Leaks of millions of citizens data, attacks by hackers, hourly calls from fraudsters - these are just some of the threats which have faced Kazakhstan over the past few months. Following the resignation – or dismissal depending on which source one believes - of the head of the Ministry of Digital Development, Innovation and the Aerospace Industry, Bagdat Mussin, many wonder whether the authorities will be able to secure Kazakhstan's internet. The Times of Central Asia investigates. On May 9, AlmaTV, Kazakhstan’s largest internet and cable TV provider, suffered an attack by hackers which caused disruption to its’ services. “According to data received… the cause of the disruption was a large-scale and multi-level cyberattack," AlmaTV stated. The outage solely affected internet broadcasting, whilst analog, digital and satellite TV services were working normally. According to numerous sources, the broadcast of the Victory Day military parade in Moscow was interrupted by footage of an anti-Russian nature, alleged torture, and other explicit content. Officials in Kazakhstan have yet to commented. This is not the first scandal in the sphere of cybersecurity. In March of this year, the State Technical Service JSC discovered that personal data pertaining to over two million clients of the microfinance organization, zaimer.kz (MFO Robocash.kz LLP), had been compromised. Warnings about the leak were also received by people who had never used the company’s services. In the opinion of many analysts, the reaction of the Ministry of Digital Development, Innovations and the Aerospace Industry was extremely late in coming, extremely vague, and in no way reassured Kazakhstanis about the safety of their private information. Mussin was accused of making excuses, poor-quality communication, failing to answer questions, and “babble talk.” In addition, back in February, foreign media, in particular CyberNews, reported that in leaked Chinese Government documents, data belonging to residents of Kazakhstan was found. The documents were related to spyware developed by the Chinese information security company, iSoon, and targeted social media platforms, telecommunications companies, and other such organizations. Allegedly, unknown assailants have posted a huge number of PRC government documents on GitHub. The information circulated also revealed sensitive data pertaining to several telecom operators in Kazakhstan. Also in February, a shocking statement by the Center for Analysis and Investigation of Cyberattacks (TSARKA) appeared, according to which a Chinese hacker group controlled the critical facets within Kazakhstan's IT infrastructure for almost two years. “On February 16, 2024, unknown persons published on the GitHub resource a leak of secret data from the Chinese company iSoon (aka Anxun), one of the contractors of the Chinese Ministry of Public Security (MPS). It is reported to be associated with Chengdu 404, a structure controlled by Chinese cyber intelligence known as APT41,” TSARKA said. “The attackers’ goal was both general information, such as databases, and targeted information of specific individuals: control of correspondence, calls and movement. Data analysis showed that the volume of stolen information is measured in terabytes.” The hackers managed to gain control over the event logs, call durations, IMEIs of devices, and...

Disinformation Targets Kazakhstan’s Ties with China, Russia, and the U.S.

Over an eight-day period in April 2024, a barrage of news stories featuring rumors about Kazakhstan’s foreign policy permeated Chinese media. These dubious reports alleged that the U.S. had hyped an unverified leak from a Russian Duma official claiming Kazakhstan was engaged in covert negotiations to join NATO and suggested that Kazakhstan was seeking China's support to deter a potential Russian invasion. The series of articles highlights the "fog of war" that pervades not only the battlefields of Ukraine but also the media landscape, representing a new front where Kazakhstan risks becoming collateral damage. Kazakhstan’s president has not deviated from the country’s neutrality and has maintained a difficult yet strategic multi-vector foreign policy that seeks to diversify economic and security arrangements rather than aligning exclusively with one partner. The evident information war underscores the diplomatic sensitivities which Kazakhstan faces, and the sinister tactics employed by outside actors to disrupt domestic and regional balances.   Misleading narrative #1: The U.S. is hyping an alleged voice recording of an official claiming that Kazakhstan is Russia’s next target On April 6, an alleged audio recording, attributed to Russian State Duma deputy and General Andrei Gurulov, hinted that Kazakhstan was set to become Russia's next target. The leak surfaced on X (Twitter) and was reported by the New Voice of Ukraine just hours later. In the following two days, the story propagated across at least five Chinese platforms, with numerous reposts claiming that “the Western media has vigorously hyped…the recording scandal”. The above post is machine translated from Chinese into English   A search on Google News on 21 April 2024 for “Andrei Gurulov” yielded no results, while a wider search revealed a single defense blog reporting on the alleged leak.   Misleading narrative #2: Kazakhstan is in covert discussions to join NATO Between April 10 and April 11, an array of articles and blogs appeared on at least six Chinese language media platforms (and were reposted across numerous other outlets) about Kazakhstan’s intent to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). The so-called “news” was based on an unverified and unconfirmed rumor. The above post is machine translated from Chinese into English   The above post is machine translated from Chinese into English   Kazakhstan has not expressed an intention to join NATO as a full member. Instead, it has engaged with NATO through partnership programs and dialogue, focusing on security cooperation, counter-terrorism, and military training within frameworks like the Partnership for Peace (PfP) program, which Kazakhstan joined in 1995. The above post is machine translated from Chinese into English   This is not the first case of gaslighting by the media on Kazakhstan-NATO issues. Images taken from the 2023 opening of a conference hall at the Peacekeeping Operations Center of the Ministry of Defense of Kazakhstan, which was attended by the U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan, resulted in similarly bizarre misrepresentations.   Misleading narrative #3: Kazakhstan seeks China’s security to counterbalance the Russian threat On April 14 and April 15, the latest barrage...

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