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Cybersecurity Threats and Countermeasures for Armed Forces

According to data from Statista, cybercrime costs a staggering $8.44 trillion, and this figure is expected to skyrocket to $23.84 trillion by 2027. Governments have recently intensified their crackdown on the use of certain apps, such as TikTok, on work devices, leading to growing concerns about data privacy.

Since the start of the Russia-Ukraine war, Google has reported a surge of more than 300% in Russian phishing campaigns targeting users in NATO countries in 2022 compared to 2020. An article published by Forbes reveals that the government and military sectors face an average of 1,136 cyberattacks every week, a sharp increase of 47% from last year. Moreover, the UK government recently issued a statement, indicating that Russian hackers are actively seeking to “disrupt or destroy” critical infrastructure in Britain.

As cyberattacks continue to evolve in sophistication and prevalence, particularly during times of unrest, it becomes increasingly challenging to detect if you are being targeted until it is too late. The issue of cyber security for the military is particularly acute, so understanding cyber threats and how to combat them is something that military personnel around the world should focus on.

Types of Cyber Warfare Attacks

Any information security army most often faces the following cyber threats:

  • Espionage refers to the act of monitoring other countries to steal secrets. In cyber warfare, this can involve using botnets or spear phishing attacks to compromise sensitive computer systems before exfiltrating valuable information.
  • Propaganda attacks involve attempts to manipulate the minds and thoughts of individuals residing in or fighting for a specific country. Propaganda can be employed to reveal embarrassing truths, spread falsehoods to undermine public trust in their own country or encourage alignment with their advocates.
  • Surprise attacks, similar to historical events like Pearl Harbor and 9/11, are carried out to catch the enemy off guard and weaken their defenses. These attacks can serve as a precursor to physical assaults within the context of hybrid warfare.

How to Protect the Military from Cyber Threats?

#1 Anti-Theft Technology

Typically, you would install an application that provides device and location data to the tech provider on devices with built-in anti-theft technology. If your device gets lost or stolen, the tech provider can lock down your computer, preventing unauthorized access. Then, they can determine the location and safely delete your data.

#2 VPN

On all devices, especially work ones, you should use a VPN. If you have a military-grade VPN active, no one will be able to intercept and view the data. With a secure VPN for Windows, you can prevent hacker attacks, protect yourself from phishing, and device hacking, and protect your data. Even if it is not expressly stated in the agreement with the employer, VPN software for PCs has always been and will always be a good practice for protecting against hackers. You should also understand the differences between them and their main functions. For example, you can take VeePN, which has military-grade encryption, protection against IP and DNS address leaks, a no-log policy, 2500+ VPN servers around the world, a kill switch, double VPN, and Netguard. This set of functions is enough for protection; be guided by the listed functions when choosing a provider.

#3 Multi-Factor Authentication

Many people now use multi-factor authentication (MFA) daily, even for activities like email. It is becoming mandatory for government employees as well. MFA requires multiple login steps, including password entry, face ID, or fingerprint verification. By employing MFA, your device’s security is reinforced. If a hacker manages to obtain your password, they must overcome an additional hurdle, making it much harder for them to gain access to your account.

#4 Remove Data from Unused Devices

Windows devices typically come with the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) feature, which is a hardware component utilized for data storage and encryption. Military-grade devices now lean towards effortless removal or installation of data, enhancing device security by ensuring data presence only when necessary. This enables swift data transfer between devices and prevents potential exploitation of discarded or outdated devices by hackers, as the data is completely removed. Thus, it is crucial to wipe all data from your old phone before disposing of it to mitigate any potential targeting by hackers.

#5 Encrypt Data

Sensitive data can be easily transmitted or stolen if it is contained on a computer, server, or readable media like physical discs or USB drives. To provide more protection in case of modification, loss, or theft, some devices and software applications encrypt data on your device. Organizations often use a combination of encryption and password protection to safeguard data.


If your job requires you to work with valuable and confidential data, the responsibility for its safety falls on your shoulders. Every military member must be aware of the potential risks and common types of cyberattacks, and be able to counter them. This article helps to understand these questions and provide key answers, but this is only the beginning of the journey.


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