Euro-Atlantic Center Report: Russia Launched Electronic Warfare in Romania


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Russia is already operating through an electronic war that is active including in the Eastern area of Romania, according to a report published on May 10, 2024 by an official institution subordinate to the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Euro-Atlantic Center for Resilience, a structure of expertise based in Bucharest, which operates in support of NATO, the European Union and international partners.

The information contained in this 44-page report mainly talks about the danger posed by “advanced electronic warfare capabilities developed by the Russian Armed Forces”. These “represent a threat to the integrity of GNSS systems (Global Navigation Satellite System – n.r), using advanced jamming and spoofing techniques to disrupt their operation”.
The authors claim that “electronic warfare, which involves the use of electromagnetic signals to identify, intercept and disrupt the operations of the adversary, has become a central element of the Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine, but also affecting NATO states”.
The document talks at length about these “advanced electronic warfare capabilities developed by the Russian Armed Forces, including the use of R-330Zh, Borisoglebsk-2 and Zhitel systems to jam GPS signals and protect its own strategic infrastructure.”
The report “How dangerous are the electromagnetic attacks of the Russian Federation for civil defense?” has been published by the Euro-Atlantic Center for Resilience, under the coordination of the authors Sînziana Iancu and Paul Mândras, both experts with training and experience in the field of military and defense intelligence. 
“The deployment of GPS jammers in the coastal areas of the Black Sea and the Baltic Sea compromises the security and optimal functioning of ports, creating risks of spoofing telecommunications systems and, in more serious cases, leading to collisions between ships. This disrupts cargo loading and unloading procedures, with the potential to generate losses in the order of hundreds of millions of euros. Moreover, jamming can affect drones and aircraft operating in these areas, thus compromising air and maritime safety in the region In the medium and long term, electromagnetic interference from the Russian Federation can significantly destabilize Romania’s navigation systems, especially in Dobrogea and Moldova, thus affecting the safety of flights and navigation. Disruption to communications and navigation can increase the risk of aviation and maritime accidents, hampering transport operations and causing significant economic losses. Such actions can also affect telecommunications infrastructure and undermine national security by gathering sensitive information and misleading defense systems,” the report further states.
The report cites data published by the GPSJAM website, which documents GPS jamming activity. Thus, on May 3, 2024, the areas on the Romanian territory where there is a massive disruption of air navigation systems are mainly the border areas, in the towns of Galați, Bacău, Iaşi, but also in Constanța.
On May 2, 2024, Bacău, Galați, Tulcea and Constanța are “red”. Except for the 15th, 21st and 22nd of April, when Bacăul was also included on the red map of GPS system interference, Galati, Tulcea and Constanța are the most targeted, being in the “red zone” of the map. Between April 9-10, 2024, GPS interference signals also appeared in the Iași area,” say the authors of the quoted document.
The report also quotes a statement from September 2023 by General Daniel Petrescu, the Chief of Staff of the Romanian Army at the time, who, during a forum of the Euro-Atlantic Center for Resilience, “warned against the dangers of navigation presented by these interferences and accused the Russian Federation of constantly obstructing GPS communications including for ships in the Romanian maritime zone. This, combined with the unrest in the Black Sea region, has turned the area into a center of Russian military activities.”
“The motivation behind Russian GPS spoofing and jamming could range from simple harassment to geopolitical concerns such as the support NATO states provide to Ukraine to counter Russian military aggression. The deployment of a US-supplied Aegis anti-missile system in northern Poland could also be a target for jamming, posing a challenge to its radar-based interception system. It is interesting to note that the Russian Federation itself faces incidents of GPS jamming and spoofing, mainly for purposes such as misleading drones or protecting sensitive areas. Given that the Russian Federation has developed the GLONASS satellite navigation system, electronic warfare can disrupt or spoof GPS signals without affecting GLONASS or other systems such as China’s Beidou. The Russian Federation could also explore ground navigation systems such as Chaika or Scorpio for military applications in signal-poor environments,” the document says
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