VSQUARE SPECIAL REPORT
How Central Europe was trapped by Eastern input
Russian influencing strategies are like a swarm of bees: they consist of many small factors that don’t match one particular frame. VSquare Project report presents an analysis of Russian propaganda influencing, which turns out to be the main weapon used in a quiet information war.
International criminals used Estonia’s deficient cryptocurrency regulation to turn the small country into a hub of financial crime where over a billion euros have been laundered or defrauded from victims. Now the same actors are relocating to other countries who repeat all the same mistakes
Hundreds of Russian and Belarusian rail cars stranded near the European Union’s border with Ukraine in countries such as Hungary, Slovakia, and Poland. These wagons, which used to carry all kinds of goods from Russia and Belarus to the EU, were stranded on NATO soil after Russia’s attack on Ukraine on February 24, 2022.
If the war were to stop today, it would take Russia between three to five years to restore its military might and capabilities to the level they would need to strike the next neighboring country, says colonel Margo Grosberg, outgoing chief of Estonia’s military intelligence in a rare interview, published in English on VSquare.
Hungarian NewsFront is active again, but has been unable to achieve great reach. There might be no need, as Hungarian state propaganda willingly serves as a mouthpiece for the Kremlin.
Berlin-based company, Slovak bikers, and far-right activist in Central Europe. Who keeps Russia’s propaganda machine well-oiled? Despite US and EU sanctions, NewsFront, a hub for Kremlin propaganda linked to Russian intelligence, is still targeting audiences in Europe. Now, it’s developing its reach on Telegram and using local networks.
Ukrainian sources suspect that through digital backdoors in Chinese-made surveillance systems, the Russian armed forces were able to spy on Ukrainian cities. Products of Chinese security tech companies have been blacklisted in several countries, but in Hungary, they are still widely used.
VSquare has in its possession documents drawn up in Russia three months ago that reveal an influence operation currently being prepared. The operation is centred on the health of the Baltic Sea; its ultimate aim is to incite anti-NATO sentiment in the Baltic states.
VSquare is in possession of files compiled by the Kremlin that reveal Russia’s plans to exert influence in Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania now and in the coming years.