Filip Stojanovski and Ilija Zhupanoski. Photo:

“Disinformation in our country started intensifying before the referendum on the Prespa Agreement, then it intensified once again before joining NATO, and followed during the Covid crisis, when many citizens did not get vaccinated due to misinformation and therewith they endangered their health, and continued in relation to the French proposal,” noted Zhupanoski.

Noting the measures that have been taken in this country aimed at dealing with hybrid threats and cyber-attacks, the prime minister’s adviser emphasized that an institutional measure was already taken in 2019, and will continue soon with a serious comprehensive step initiated by the non-governmental sector.

“A few weeks ago, the Government received an initiative from a group of national organizations with specific recommendations on dealing with disinformation, and the Government accepted this as a good basis, so we expect that soon they will hold a joint meeting and develop a national plan, in order to include all stakeholders while dealing with this problem” disclosed Zhupanoski.

Presenting the measures that the National Centre for Computer Incident Response – MKD CIRT is taking, as well as the trainings that it organizes for state administration officials, with the significant assistance of the Estonian e-Governance Academy, Acev emphasized that threats from hybrid attacks require organized measures and close cooperation of all stakeholders, regardless of whether we are talking about state institutions, civil society organizations and citizens.

“Mandatory incident reporting, by citizens and by various bodies, is the basic prerequisite for them to get the desired outcome,” said the Head of the National Centre for Computer Incident Response, clarifying that all information on incident reporting is provided on their website.

The problem with hybrid attacks and disinformation is not new, it dates back to a long time ago, noted Maigre from the Estonian e-Academy and Filip Stojanovski, the moderator of the discussion and Director at the Metamorphosis Foundation, who organized the conference on cyber resilience within the ICEDA project.

Hybrid war requires joint defensive activities

Stojanovski, referring to the problem of hybrid threats and disinformation, noted that in these areas there has been a long discussion about a special war and that the problem was also formally covered within the scope of the subject General National Defence in schools.

Merle Maigre, Programme Director of Cybersecurity at e-Governance Academy from Estonia, | Photo:

Maigre, reminding only about the last century, mentioned the special operations of the Russian services against Estonia as examples of hybrid attacks, as a combination of regular and irregular warfare, which would further lead to the annexation of the country by the Soviet Union, and also referred to the 1979 Afghan coup d’état by 700 Soviet soldiers wearing Afghan uniforms.

Recalling the current crisis, she stated that the attacks from the Russian side on her country continued, but escalated since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine, with particularly strong attacks in April and August last year.

“Just as an example, if during the last year there was an average of 12 DDOS attacks on Estonian state institutions on a monthly basis, in April and August 2022 there were 65 attacks each month”, she emphasized.

Referring to the measures that should be taken, she pointed out that first of all it is necessary to focus on recognizing digital attacks and also to raise the problem at the international level, primarily with the inclusion of the private sector which has the knowledge and capacity to help state authorities in the fight against cyber threats and disinformation.

At the same time, she mentioned that media literacy from an early age in schools could be the main measure to improve cyber resistance, so that citizens can learn to recognize threats and attacks in the digital sphere from an early age.

The moderator Stojanovski reminded that the country has been working on media literacy curricula for several years through the media literacy network, which includes the “Metamorphosis” Foundation, as well as the state institutions and the media.


The international conference “Digital Transformation for Citizens” continues with two more sessions today, at the “Marriott” hotel in Skopje and online through the “Zoom” platform. The conference will be directly broadcast on the project’s Facebook page.

The conference is organized within the project “Increasing Civic Engagement in the Digital Agenda – ICEDA”, led by the “Metamorphosis” Foundation, co-financed by the European Union. The goal is to increase the engagement of the citizens in the creation of the digital agenda.

Link to the original post: Cyber resilience begins with personal digital “hygiene” |