Feeds

Symantec source code leak becomes torrent

'In the name of god! You are killing our CPUs'

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Hacktivists once again poked fun at Symantec after previously leaked source code for Symantec's Norton Utilities 2006 software was made available as a torrent on Monday. Symantec downplayed the significance of the leak, saying it only involved obsolete code that had already been exposed.

AntiSec tacked a mocking note onto the release of a 52MB file, which was uploaded to The Pirate Bay and other torrent tracker sites on Monday. "Anyhow with this release is nothing really to prove, just stop making shitty software in the name of god! Your [sic] are only killing our CPU's! [sic]"

"Respect & greetings to @AnonymousIRC @Par_AnoIA."

Back in January, a hacking group calling itself The Lords Of Dharmaraja boasted about stealing the source code for Symantec's security products from Indian government systems.

The security giant initially blamed the leak of source code for older enterprise products on a breach at the network of an unnamed third party, before later admitting that the source code of pcAnywhere and consumer products had also been exposed. It also confessed that the leak was actually down to an earlier (previously undetected) breach of its own systems back in 2006.

It said source code for the 2006-era versions of the following products had been exposed: Norton Antivirus Corporate Edition; Norton Internet Security; Norton SystemWorks (Norton Utilities and Norton GoBack); and pcAnywhere.

Symantec took the highly unusual step in early February of advising customers of pcAnywhere to suspend use of the older versions of remote control desktop management software pending the release of a patch. Shortly after the patch became available, The Lords Of Dharmaraja leaked portions of pcAnywhere source code, together with an invitation for hackers everywhere to pour over the code in order to identify exploits against systems running Symantec's remote control software.

In a statement, Symantec said this week's release is tied to the earlier breach but is less significant than the pcAnywhere leak because it involves only obsolete code.

"Symantec is aware of the claims made online that a group has posted the source code for Norton Utilities 2006. We have analyzed the code that was posted and have concluded that it is the same code that was already posted by another group in January 2012.

As we stated at that time, the 2006 version of Norton Utilities is no longer sold or supported. The current version of Norton Utilities has been completely rebuilt and shares no common code with Norton Utilities 2006. The code that has been posted for the 2006 version poses no security threat to users of the current version of Norton Utilities. Furthermore, we have no indications that the posting of this old code impacts the functionality or security of any other Symantec or Norton solutions.

Independent security experts, such as Imperva, have described the Lords Of Dharmaraja hack and subsequent source code leak saga as more of a trophy scalp for hacktivists than a serious risk to Symantec's customers.

"The implications of the anti-virus code leakage will not keep the Symantec folks awake too late at night, and certainly not their customers," Rob Rachwald, director of security strategy at Imperva, wrote at the time. "After all, there isn’t much hackers can learn from the code which they hadn’t known before [because] most anti-virus product is based on attack signatures." ®

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

More from The Register

next story
DARPA-derived secure microkernel goes open source tomorrow
Hacker-repelling, drone-protecting code will soon be yours to tweak as you see fit
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
Four fake Google haxbots hit YOUR WEBSITE every day
Goog the perfect ruse to slip into SEO orfice
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.