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31st Mar 2022

How mobile phones are being craftily weaponised by Russia following the Ukraine invasion

Danny Jones

Mobile phones are being weaponised on the Ukrainian frontline

The slightest phone signal could give a drone all the intel it needs

As the Russian invasion continues, Ukrainian fighters are being warned to go off the grid as it were, as new intel suggests that mobile phones are being weaponised to locate and attack soldiers on the frontline.

According to new evidence reported by the likes of Sky News, Russian UAV drones are not just being used to survey surrounding areas via the usual technology, they are now mimicking phone masts in order to identify mobile networks and the devices pinging off of them.

Put simply, drones are being turned into cell-site simulators. Essentially they are acting like a cell tower and sent in alongside trucks that travel across the battlefield. This tactic has also been reportedly been used by Ukraine forces, resulting in the death of a high-profile Russian general after he made an “unsecured call”.

These simulators then trick phones into connecting to multiple masts in the vicinity as they measure the strength and direction of the signal for each phone and mast. After determining whether the signal is stronger or weaker towards different masts, the exact location can then be triangulated and Russian forces can send in an artillery strike on their position.

Russians using phones to locate Ukrainian soldiers

Not only are mobile phones being weaponised through this method but reports suggest that some drones are even able to hack into a device’s internal GPS tracking system, making pinpointing both soldier and civilian locations even easier.

The Canadian sniper known as ‘Wali’, who volunteered to fight in Ukraine, recently revealed this was the same reason he had been falsely reported as dead by multiple outlets. Declaring it a safety risk to bring your phone when fighting, he had simply not been active on his phone for a number of days whilst assisting Ukrainian soldiers on the frontline.

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