We knew that Russia was considering war with Ukraine when President Vladimir Putin moved his luxury yacht named Graceful. It had been mothballed in Germany, but in early February the Russian president moved it elsewhere. However, it appears he did not totally escape with his 266-foot-long yacht.
The European Union, Britain, and the United States had been warning that Russia would face sanctions should it move its military into Ukraine. Moving his yacht was a red flag to many that Putin was seriously leaning toward attacking its smaller neighbor. Sanctions could include impounding his yacht.
All of a sudden, Graceful has a new call sign on yacht tracking websites. The luxury ship, now parked, in the Black Sea, normally goes under the call sign UBGV8 maritime new’s FleetMon reported.
But go to MarineTraffic’s website. Bloomberg reporter Ryan Gallagher and Good Pillow CEO William LeGate discovered that the yacht’s call sign changed to FCKPTN, and its location was “Hell.” Luxury Launces reported.
Putin prefers to speak Russian in interviews and appearances, but he speaks English well. So he would understand the thinly-veiled wording.
The hackers came from Anonymous’s hacker-related The Anon Leaks. The latter are the ones who hacked into the Russian maritime ID system. Gallagher said:
‘[they] told me they did it by manipulating the maritime Automatic Identification System. “They said they wanted to put the yacht in the scope of sanction packages as well as ‘put a little smile on some faces for a short period in these dark times.”‘
The VesselTracker website shows the call sign as ANONYMO.
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