More information is surfacing on the source of the NSA's hacking tools discovered and published by the Shadow Brokers. Just as Ed Snowden pointed out shortly after the tools first appeared online, the problem with sticking a stash of hacking tools on equipment you don't own is that others can access the tools, too… especially if an operative doesn't follow through on the more mundane aspects of good opsec.
At midnight on Saturday, the National Security Agency ended one of its most notorious spying programs. This is only a tiny victory. The NSA’s sprawling, inefficient surveillance apparatus is still a privacy threat.
When Der Spiegel and Jacob Appelbaum published leaked pages of the National Security Agency's ANT Catalog—the collection of tools and software created for NSA's Tailored Access Operations (TAO) division—it triggered shock, awe, and a range of other emotions around the world. Among some hardware hackers and security researchers, it triggered something else, too—a desire to replicate the capabilities of TAO's toolbox to conduct research on how the same approaches might be used by other adversaries.
Russian antivirus company Kaspersky revealed recently that it was the target of hackers behind the Stuxnet and Duqu worms last year. The hackers have been attacking the company’s network for months, collecting data on its operations and software. But it turns out that intelligence agencies including the NSA and GCHQ have spied on antivirus companies for years, looking for exploitable vulnerabilities.
The new report comes from newly leaked documentation from NSA-whistleblower Edward Snowden, who made them available to The Intercept.
The Senate failed to pass legislation late Sunday to extend three Patriot Act surveillance measures ahead of their midnight expiration. The National Security Agency's bulk telephone metadata collection program—first exposed by Edward Snowden in 2013—is the most high profile of the three spy tools whose legal authorization expired.
Everyday people are transforming the way police officers behave thanks to the power of camera-enabled smartphones. Now, the advocacy group Transparency Toolkit wants to transform the way the national security state behaves using other common tech tools: Google and LinkedIn.
NSA whistleblower and fugitive Edward Snowden said through his lawyer that he would be willing to return to the United States to face charges for leaking classified NSA documents on the agencies vast spying apparatus used against American citizens, foreign governments, and people around the world.
Echoing the concerns of many US-based technology companies have about US-led surveillance programs, Yahoo Chief Information Security Officer Alex Stamos asked the director of the National Security Agency some pointed questions concerning proposed or existing backdoors placed in encryption technologies. The responses from NSA director Adm. Mike Rogers only underscored the growing divide.
Edward Snowden has just one regret.
It's not that he threw Obama's second term in office under the bus by disclosing the vast surveillance by the National Security Agency. Nor did he regret that he condemned himself to the bowels of Russia. (He rightfully pointed out the weather in Moscow has been "warmer than the east coast" this past week, where temperatures have been close to zero.)
One of the most shocking parts of the recently discovered spying network Equation Group is its mysterious module designed to reprogram or reflash a computer’s firmware with malicious code. The Kaspersky researchers who uncovered this said its ability to subvert hard drive firmware—the guts of any computer—“surpasses anything else” they had ever seen.