Tinder, drones and TikTok or How New Technologies have Transformed Cyber Warfare

Source: https://cobaltstrike.net/2022/03/22/tinder-drones-and-tiktok-or-how-new-technologies-have-transformed-cyber-warfare/

Commercial drones, cash donations via Airbnb, TikTok chronicles, deepfakes and trolling of Russian soldiers on Tinder are vivid examples of how modern technologies can be used in cyber warfare in the 21st century.

The New Atlas edition presented five examples of how technologies are changing modern cyber warfare, taken from current realities.

Consumer class drones

Over the past ten years, a multibillion-dollar market for commercial unmanned aerial vehicles has been flourishing, providing ordinary citizens with the opportunity to use technologies previously available only to the military. After Russia’s troops entered the territory of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, drone enthusiasts immediately rushed into battle.

In addition, in a recently published open letter, the Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine, Mikhail Fedorov, called on the manufacturer of DJI commercial drones to block devices registered in Russia and disable the AeroScope technology for real-time positioning of DJI drones and their owners, which allows missiles to be directed at Ukrainian residents who have placed their devices at the disposal of the army.

DJI replied that it has no control over the AeroScope, and it is impossible to disable it. However, she suggested disabling the possibility of using her drones on the territory of Ukraine.

Assistance to victims via Airbnb

The natural reaction of people around the world to what is happening in Ukraine was a desire to help. Various non-governmental and charitable organizations always mobilize their efforts during armed conflicts, but this time ordinary Internet users also joined the humanitarian mission. People started booking accommodation in Ukraine through the Airbnb rental service as a way to send money to those in need.

In total, accommodation was booked for more than 61 thousand nights worth about $ 2 million. Airbnb removed its mark-up, and the money was sent directly to the homeowners.

Of course, scammers immediately became more active, who began to offer non-existent housing in order to receive free money.


The events that began in Ukraine in February 2022 led to the emergence of a new type of field journalism – young people began to use social networks and especially TikTok (a platform with more than a billion active users) to document what is happening.


Experts have been warning about the dangers of deepfakes for several years, and now you can observe their first-ever use in military conflicts. For example, recently a fake video began circulating in social networks, in which the President of Ukraine, Vladimir Zelensky, allegedly calls on the Ukrainian army to surrender.


At the end of February, The Sun newspaper reported that the dating app Tinder began offering Ukrainian women matches with Russian soldiers standing on the border with Ukraine. After the release of this story, users around the world began to deliberately change their location to Ukraine or Russia in order to troll Russian soldiers. Slovak creatives have even launched a Special Love Operation movement to search for users on Tinder and distribute certain messages among them.

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