A few days after sending SpaceX Starlink Internet terminals to Ukraine, Elon Musk warned the authorities to use the devices with “caution.” Being a non-Russian communication system, the Starlink satellite Internet service has a “high” probability of becoming a target of attacks.
The founder and CEO of SpaceX advised users to turn on Starlink only when necessary and place the antenna as far away from people as possible. He also suggested masking the antennas.
According to senior researcher John Scott-Railton from the Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto, if Russia controls the airspace over Ukraine, the uplink transmissions of users can become beacons for airstrikes.
Although the use of satellite communications involves serious risks, it avoids the problems associated with conventional terrestrial broadband access. Since the beginning of the conflict, the Internet connection in Ukraine has fallen by 20% due to an increase in the number of Russian bombings and rocket attacks.