Information Security News
Turns out, not even the head of the Senate Judiciary Committee can figure out what’s happened to the National Security Agency (NSA) staffers who were involved in the LOVEINT spying scandal.
Back in August 2013, the Wall Street Journal introduced the world to an internal term that NSA analysts have come up with to describe the act of spying on one’s ex-partner: LOVEINT. The word is reminiscent of existing spycraft parlance like HUMINT (human intelligence) or SIGINT (signals intelligence). (LOVEINT also spawned endless Twitter jokes.)
In a letter sent Monday to the attorney general, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) described how he initially asked the Department of Justice (DOJ) to explain what it was doing to address the 12 publicly-known instances of this inappropriate use of NSA surveillance capability. However, the DOJ has stayed mum.
Hacking for "signals intelligence" doesn't take NSA-level resources; it doesn't even require very sophisticated exploit tools. Using a combination of Windows and Android malware and some very simple social engineering, a group aligned with the regime of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad have raked in a wealth of intelligence on Syrian opposition groups. And they did it by pretending to be women and flirting with their victims.
Over the past two years, using a combination of fake social media and Skype accounts associated with fictional female supporters of Syrian rebel groups, the group—apparently operating from Lebanon—fooled rebel soldiers and others providing aid to them into downloading malware to their computers and Android smartphones. As revealed in a report published today by FireEye (PDF), the group (which may have been associated with Hezbollah) was able to harvest not just personal information on their targets, but also battle plans and other intelligence information that could have been used by Hezbollah and the Syrian government's troops to counter the opposition.
FireEye discovered the operation during a malware investigation, uncovering a cache of 7.7 gigabytes of stolen data on a German server. The data contains Skype databases including chat logs and contacts, as well as documents and images.
For those of you who are loosing track, yet another Adobe Flash vulnerability has been unleashedon their unsuspecting users. I am sure we all know the wording off by heart now, but incase:
Vulnerability identifier: APSA15-02
CVE number : CVE-2015-0313
Platform: All Platforms
Quote: A critical vulnerability (CVE-2015-0313) exists inAdobe Flash Player 22.214.171.1246and earlier versions for Windows and Macintosh. Successful exploitation could cause a crash and potentially allow an attacker to take control of the affected system. ">1.">2." target="_blank">http://blog.trendmicro.com/
net(c) SANS Internet Storm Center. https://isc.sans.edu Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.
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