Feeds

Google researcher says government hack attacks on journos on the rise

Everyone's a target, it seems

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Most major news organisations are now the targets of state-sponsored attacks on their security, according to Google security researcher Shane Huntley.

According to Reuters, Huntley told the Singapore Black Hat conference on March 28 that his research, conducted in partnership with Citizen Labs' Morgan Marquis-Boire, revealed attacks on 21 out of the world's top 25 news organisations.

Huntley didn't reveal how many of those attacks Google believed had been successful, but news organisations known to have been infiltrated in some way include Forbes, the Financial Times, and the New York Times. The first two of these were claimed by the Syrian Electronic Army, while the New York Times attack is attributed to China.

The attacks that reach the public are, however, the tip of the iceberg of cliché, with Marquis-Boire noting that there's been a year-long campaign against journalists and bloggers following human rights issues in Vietnam.

According to Reuters, Huntley believes a recent successful attack against an unnamed Western news organisation involved a fake questionnaire e-mailed to its staff. This fits the general pattern of phishing, either via e-mail or malicious links in social media posts, being the attack of first resort for most high-profile hacks of recent times.

The abstract of Huntley's and Marquis-Boire's talk says news organisations are targeted using “0day-bearing documents, targeted spear-phishing and watering hole attacks [and] implants both custom nation-state designed and commercial”.

Huntley told Reuters: “If you're a journalist or a journalistic organisation we will see state-sponsored targeting and we see it happening regardless of region”. ®

New hybrid storage solutions

More from The Register

next story
Apple Pay is a tidy payday for Apple with 0.15% cut, sources say
Cupertino slurps 15 cents from every $100 purchase
Google recommends pronounceable passwords
Super Chrome goes into battle with Mr Mxyzptlk
Infosec geniuses hack a Canon PRINTER and install DOOM
Internet of Stuff securo-cockups strike yet again
Reddit wipes clean leaked celeb nudie pics, tells users to zip it
Now we've had all THAT TRAFFIC, we 'deplore' this theft
YouTube, Amazon and Yahoo! caught in malvertising mess
Cisco says 'Kyle and Stan' attack is spreading through compromised ad networks
TorrentLocker unpicked: Crypto coding shocker defeats extortionists
Lousy XOR opens door into which victims can shove a foot
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
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.
Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile
Data demand and the rise of virtualization is challenging IT teams to deliver storage performance, scalability and capacity that can keep up, while maximizing efficiency.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.