Feeds

Exxon, Shell, BP outed as mystery hack attack victims

'Millions of dollars' in data targeted

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Bloomberg News has identified six of the energy companies targeted in recent series of “coordinated covert and targeted cyberattacks” and says the victims could face legal liability for choosing not to disclose them to shareholders.

The roster includes Exxon Mobil, Royal Dutch Shell, BP, Marathon Oil, ConocoPhillips, and Baker Hughes, according to an article the news service published on Thursday. The report cited one of the victim companies and investigators who declined to be identified.

The attacks were ongoing for at least two years and possibly as long as four years. The unknown hackers worked through servers located in China.

The attackers “targeted computerized topographical maps worth 'millions of dollars' that show locations of potential oil reserves,” Bloomberg said, citing Ed Skoudis, founder and senior security consultant for InGuardians. The hacks were first disclosed in a report issued by McAfee, which said they resulted in the in the loss of “project-financing information with regard to oil and gas field bids and operations.”

Bloomberg said none of the hacked companies disclosed the attacks to shareholders, and quoted a lawyer who said “there is certainly the potential for shareholder derivative liability.”

The report also cited a McAfee spokesman saying company researchers promised to withhold the identity of the compromised companies in exchange for their help in preparing the report, which was done to “educate the community.”

The public outing of the victims could cause companies to think twice about participating in anonymous studies in the future. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
'Kim Kardashian snaps naked selfies with a BLACKBERRY'. *Twitterati gasps*
More alleged private, nude celeb pics appear online
Home Depot ignored staff warnings of security fail laundry list
'Just use cash', former security staffer warns friends
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Snowden, Dotcom, throw bombs into NZ election campaign
Claim of tapped undersea cable refuted by Kiwi PM as Kim claims extradition plot
Freenode IRC users told to change passwords after securo-breach
Miscreants probably got in, you guys know the drill by now
THREE QUARTERS of Android mobes open to web page spy bug
Metasploit module gobbles KitKat SOP slop
BitTorrent's peer-to-peer chat app Bleep goes live as public alpha
A good day for privacy as invisble.im also reveals its approach to untraceable chats
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.