Estonia helps Georgia in cyber war

  • 2008-08-16
  • By Mike Collier

TALLINN - Estonia has already sent around 50 army reservists to Georgia (though on a voluntary, non-uniformed basis) to conduct humanitarian work and now it has emerged that Estonia is also lending its cyber-warfare expertise to the Georgian cause.

The Estonian Foreign Ministry has confirmed that it is sending two of its leading cyber-defense experts to Tbilisi to help stave off cyber-attacks emanating in Russia. Estonia successfully defended itself against similar attacks during the 'bronze soldier' riots of 2007. The experts are likely to be part of the new NATO cyber-defense center established in Tallinn, and if so, the move would be one of the strongest instances so far of NATO lending practical support to. Georgia

However, according to IT industry website Network World (, Estonian servers are now hosting the website of the Georgian Foreign Ministry, whose daily blog has become a key source of information in the propaganda war with Russia.

Commenting on the move on Network World, IT security specialist Richard Stiennon said: "For Russia to respond in any way to cyber defense experts being sent to Georgia it would have to acknowledge that it was directly supportive of, if not responsible for, the current attacks against Georgia's cyber assets. Whether or not Russia reacts on the diplomatic front this cyber war has the potential of escalating rapidly if Estonia gets involved."

Other comments posted were fully supportive of the Estonian position, ranging from "Go Estonia!" to "Kudos to Estonia for sending those cyber security advisors to Georgia." Another post warned: "Russians in some of the forums are taking notice of this IP change also, let's see the outcome."