Finland is worried about being targeted by Russian intelligence

The Finnish intelligence agency believes that joining NATO will make the Nordic country more targeted by Russia for information gathering.

“The risk of information-gathering and influence operations on Finland’s critical infrastructure has increased in both physical and cyber environments, as a result of the Finnish military campaign.” Russia and Finland’s accession to NATO”, the Finnish Intelligence and Security Service (SUPO) today published a national security assessment.

“Future NATO membership would make Finland a vulnerable target for Russian influence and intelligence activities,” the review reads.





Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto arrives for an informal meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Berlin, Germany, May 14.  Photo: AFP.

Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto attends an informal meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Berlin, Germany, May 14. Image: AFP.

According to SUPO, Russian intelligence and security services are increasingly targeting foreigners living in Russia or visiting the country. Russians working in the West can also be targets for information gathering when they visit home.

“The traditional Russian approach has been to use personnel under the cover of diplomacy. But this is becoming increasingly difficult to implement after Russia launched a military operation in Ukraine, as many Russian diplomats were arrested. Western expulsion,” SUPO said.

The risk of corporate espionage from Russia also increases, as Western sanctions force Moscow to deploy high-tech production to replace imports, SUPO added. “This makes Finnish businesses need to pay more attention to data security.”

Russia has not commented on this information.

Finland, a country of 5.5 million people, applied to join NATO with Sweden in July. Finland shares a 1,340km-long border with Russia, the longest of any European Union member state. Europe.

All 30 NATO members must approve Finland and Sweden’s applications to join. The Slovak Parliament on September 27 approved it, becoming the 28th country to approve Finland and Sweden’s accession to NATO. The other two countries that have not yet ratified are Hungary and Turkey.

In May, the Kremlin called Finland’s accession to NATO a threat to Russia, stressing that the bloc’s expansion did not make Europe or the world more stable.





Seven decades of NATO advance in Europe.  Graphics: Statista.

Seven decades of NATO advance in Europe. Graphics: Statesman.

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