The Real Russia. Today.

Hackers attack Ukraine and Rosneft; Russia’s Internet censor tries to untangle itself; and the Nemtsov murder trial gets some drama as the jury begins deliberations

Ukraine under attack. A ransomware virus began spreading rapidly through computers in Ukraine this Tuesday, attacking machines belonging to the government and dozens of major businesses, including many banks, power companies, some news agencies, and possibly even Kiev’s Boryspil International Airport. The virus, known as “Petya.A,” encrypts computers’ hard drives and demands $300 to restore the data. Ukrainian Interior Ministry officials have blamed the Russian government for the hacker attack. Story in Russian

A suspicious ransomware assault on Rosneft’s computers at Bashneft. Russian oil giant Rosneft said its servers were targeted in a massive ransomware attack on Tuesday, expressing hope that the incident isn’t tied to recent judicial proceedings (apparently referring to the company’s lawsuit against Sistema, a conglomerate owned by Vladimir Yevtushenkov). Rosneft’s website later stopped working, and the company announced that had activated its backup management system. A source inside the company told the newspaper Vedomosti that all the computers at Bashneft, a recent and controversial Rosneft acquisition, simultaneously rebooted on June 27, after which the WannaCry ransomware virus appeared on screen, demanding payment for unencrypting the machines’ hard drives. Story in Russian

Context: On Monday, a Russian court froze oligarch Vladimir Yevtushenkov’s holdings in MTS, Russia’s largest mobile operator, and two other companies as part of a fractious lawsuit filed by state-run oil giant Rosneft. Story by Financial Times

The tricky business of censoring the Web. Russia’s federal censor, Roskomnadzor, has changed its rules for blocking websites, in an effort to prevent the accidental loss of access to online resources that are not blocked. Internet providers that don’t have the equipment to perform deep-packet-inspection filtration and block specific domains will now be asked to restrict DNS queries, in order to stop blocked sites from rerouting themselves to unblocked resources (like government websites and pro-Kremlin media) — a trick banned websites have used to get other websites automatically blocked. Story in Russian

Context: “Censoring the Internet is as difficult as it is futile, and Russian Internet users have convincingly demonstrated this to the government this month by turning its website-blocking system against itself,” Leonid Bershidsky argued in an opinion story earlier this month about Roskomnadzor “banning itself.” Read it at Bloomberg

Bracing for the ban. Amid fears that Russian officials might imminently ban Telegram, the instant messenger has skyrocketed to the top of the App Store in Russia, jumping seven spots in a single day. On June 27, Telegram was being downloaded more than WhatsApp, which is still far and away the most popular instant messenger in Russia. Five days ago, before the latest rumors that Telegram could be banned in Russia, the app was ranked 15th on the iPhone. Story in Russian

Some last-minute drama in the Nemtsov murder trial. The judge in the Boris Nemtsov murder trial removed two jurors from the case on Tuesday, as the rest of the jury began deliberating its verdict. One of the jurors, a woman, was removed for failing to disclose during jury selection that her late husband was a four-time ex-felon. The other juror reportedly acquired secret case evidence that wasn’t presented at trial. Thirteen jurors now remain — one more than the required minimum to reach a verdict. Russian opposition leader and former Prime Minister Boris Nemtsov was shot and killed on February 27, 2015. Zaur Dadaev is charged with carrying out the assassination with the help of five accomplices, one of whom died as police tried to apprehend him. Story in Russian

Yours, Meduza