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US Pledges to Help Ukraine Keep the Internet and Lights On

US State Department outlines coordinated government effort to provide Ukraine with cybersecurity intelligence, expertise, and resources amid invasion.

The US State Department today announced a coordinated effort between several government agencies to provide Ukraine with the cybersecurity technical expertise, resources, and threat intelligence necessary to protect the electrical grid and Internet access as Russia continues to wage war on the country. 

US agencies assisting with Ukraine's cybersecurity defenses include the following:

  • The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has shared information it has on cyberattacks planned against Ukraine.
  • The US Agency for International Development (USAID) has provided service providers with hands-on technical support for the government's cybersecurity defense, and handed over 6,750 communications devices, including data terminals and satellite phones, to key infrastructure operators.
  • The Department of Energy is helping integrate Ukraine's electrical grid with the European Network of Transmission system Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E), which includes meeting cybersecurity and resiliency requirements. 
  • The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA) is working on providing technical details to the appropriate Ukrainian authorities. 

The announcement added that prior to the February 2022 Russian invasion, the US had already provided Ukraine with more than $40 million in what it calls "cyber capacity development." 

"The U.S. government's efforts, closely coordinated with private sector and international partners, support Ukraine’s network defenders and telecommunications professionals, who continue to defend Ukrainian networks and repair infrastructure, often at direct risk to their lives," the State Department's fact sheet said. "The United States condemns actions that block or degrade access to the Internet in Ukraine, which sever critical channels for sharing and learning information, including about the war."

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Jeffrey Schwartz, Contributing Writer, Dark Reading
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