‘AUCTION’ OF NSA TOOLS SENDS SECURITY COMPANIES SCRAMBLING
PARIS (AP) — The leak of what purports to be a National Security Agency hacking tool kit has set the information security world atwitter – and sent major companies rushing to update their defenses.
Experts across the world are still examining what amount to electronic lock picks. Here’s what they’ve found so far.
WHAT’S IN THE RELEASE?
The tool kit consists of a suite of malicious software intended to tamper with firewalls, the electronic defenses protecting computer networks. The rogue programs appear to date back to 2013 and have whimsical names like EXTRABACON or POLARSNEEZE. Three of them – JETPLOW, FEEDTROUGH and BANANAGLEE – have previously appeared in an NSA compendium of top secret cyber surveillance tools .
The auctioneers claim the tools were stolen from the Equation Group, the name given to a powerful collective of hackers exposed by antivirus firm Kaspersky Lab in 2015. Others have linked the Equation Group to the NSA’s hacking arm, although such claims are extraordinarily hard to settle with any certainty. – READ MORE