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Cyberespionage For Everyone 44

Mephistophocles writes "A chilling article by Darkreading's Kelly Jackson Higgins describes how the growing accessibility of hacking tools like RATs (Remote Access Trojans) have made cyber-espionage possible for more than just those financially backed by large nation-states, and speculates on what the implications of this may be: 'Researchers at Norman Security today revealed that they recently analyzed malware used in phishing emails targeting Israeli and Palestinian targets and found that attackers used malware based on the widely available Xtreme RAT crimeware kit. The attacks, which first hit Palestinian targets, this year began going after Israeli targets, including Israeli law enforcement agencies and embassies around the world. Norman says the same attacker is behind the attacks because the attacks use the same command-and-control (C&C) infrastructure, as well as the same phony digital certificates. This attack campaign just scratches the surface of the breadth and spread of these types of attacks around the world as more players have been turning to cyberspying. "We're just seeing the tip of the iceberg," says Einar Oftedal, deputy CTO at Norman.'"
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Cyberespionage For Everyone

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @03:53AM (#41978105)

    I mean, other than "everybody panic!" ?

    It's more revisionist history bullshit intended to spread FUD. They're trying to pretend like script kiddies and lone hackers are just now showing up, and OMFG they have tools as well! They want people to believe that in the past, the only notable hacks have come from large, wealthy governments.
    In reality, the governments have been playing "catch-up" for the last 30 years (or more) and other than the overly sensational Stuxnet story, I have yet to see anything done by a government which has not already been bested by a lone hacker or small group.

  • Re:Amazing. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by blackicye ( 760472 ) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:01AM (#41978135)

    Your message intrigues me. Tell me more of your obvious distrust of Norman Security.

    My first experience with this out of nowhere Norton Clone was as preinstalled software on a brand new Acer laptop that I had to uninstall because it was interfering with fresh software installs.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:29AM (#41978225)

    They're not weapons, lethal or otherwise, if they cannot do harm. The problem here is the open OS's, and companies, notably Adobe, that create vectors (vulnerabilities) for doing harm.

    The more script kiddies out there, the more secure the OSs will become because the more times they'll be attacked.

    Adobe, Adobe, Adobe, Adobe, Adobe, Adobe, I'll say it a million times, because I am sick of it upgrading with some critical vulnerability. It's clear to me that Adobe is the company that currently does not have a technical grip on it's products and seems to be happy with an endless upgrade cycle.

    I've started kicking their **** off PCs now because they just don't seem to be able to get their act together. But then that's also part of making OSs more secure: removing software from companies seemingly incapable of making their software secure.

    As for words as weapons, bugger off, there's nothing you can say that can harm me. If you claim words as weapons then free speech is no more.

  • Re:Amazing. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by L4t3r4lu5 ( 1216702 ) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @05:12AM (#41978339)
    Well your first mistake was not wiping any new PC completely before use. Microsoft have acknowledged [] that malware can be installed on new PCs at the factory, so using it at all without wiping is russian roulette with your personal information.

    Download a DBAN ISO and keep it somewhere for when you buy a new PC. Wipe it, reinstall Windows, install drivers (which you should download from the vendor's website from a different PC. Don't put a memory stick in to the new PC before wiping). It's more work, but your experience with the new PC will be better for it.

Given its constituency, the only thing I expect to be "open" about [the Open Software Foundation] is its mouth. -- John Gilmore