Azerbaijani activists and journalists under online attack, says Amnesty International

Azerbaijani activists and journalists under online attack, says Amnesty International

10 March 2017

According to a new report published by Amnesty International, activists, journalists, and government critics in Azerbaijan have been the victims of regular cyberattacks over recent months — many affected claim that Azerbaijan's authorities are behind the attempts to violate personal information and private communications.

The report, issued today, states that “spear-phishing” attacks — involving a virus being sent to a target via email from a fake address — have been directed at government critics over the last 13 months.

“Our research reveals that a targeted and coordinated cyber campaign is being waged against critical voices in Azerbaijan, many of whom are longtime victims of government repression,” said Amnesty senior technologist, Claudio Guarnieri, adding that the aim of this campaign has been to gather as much personal information as possible.

While Amnesty has stated that it has so far been unable to trace the cyberattacks directly to any government officials or agencies, it has traced some of the attacks to an IP address from a block of addresses that predominantly host government institutions.

The report affirms that Azerbaijan's government, upon being presented with the findings, claimed that the attacks had not been investigated because the cases had never been reported to local authorities.

Source: Radio Liberty