Articles about nsa

Hacker

Kaspersky: Clumsy NSA leak snoop's PC was packed with malware

Kaspersky Lab, the US government's least favorite computer security outfit, has published its full technical report into claims Russian intelligence used its antivirus tools to steal NSA secrets. Last month, anonymous sources alleged that in 2015, an NSA engineer took home a big bunch of the agency's cyber-weapons to work on …
Iain Thomson, 16 Nov 2017
Hackers

The four problems with the US government's latest rulebook on security bug disclosures

Analysis The United States government has published its new policy for publicly disclosing vulnerabilities and security holes. The new rulebook [PDF] – and the decision to make it public – comes following a tumultuous 12 months in which Uncle Sam's chief spy agency, the NSA, was devastated to discover part of its secret cache of …
Kieren McCarthy, 15 Nov 2017
DHS assistant secretary Jeanette Manfra

US Homeland Security says hardly any Kaspersky software left on federal networks

Only 15 per cent of US federal agencies still have Kaspersky Lab software anywhere on their networks. So said the United States' Department of Homeland Security (DHS) assistant secretary for cyber security, Jeanette Manfra, at a Tuesday hearing of the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology's oversight subcommittee …
Pop art style illustration of man exclaiming WHAT? in shock/horror/bemusement.

'Israel hacked Kaspersky and caught Russian spies using AV tool to harvest NSA exploits'

Updated The brouhaha over Russian spies using Kaspersky antivirus to steal NSA exploits from a staffer's home PC took an explosive turn on Tuesday. Essentially, it is now claimed Israeli spies hacked into Kaspersky's backend systems only to find Russian snoops secretly and silently using the software as a global search engine. Kremlin …

How bad can the new spying legislation be? Exhibit 1: it's called the USA Liberty Act

Analysis The US Senate Judiciary Committee has unveiled its answer to a controversial spying program run by the NSA and used by the FBI to fish for crime leads. Unsurprisingly, the proposed legislation [PDF] reauthorizes Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) – which allows American snoops to scour …

Angst in her pants: Alleged US govt leaker Reality Winner stashed docs in her pantyhose

Reality Winner smuggled a top-secret NSA dossier out of her office at a US government IT contractor by hiding it in her pantyhose, she told special agents. That's according to a transcript, released this week, of her interview with investigators who showed up at her house in Georgia, USA, to grill her. If you've ever wondered …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Sep 2017

Intelligence director pulls national security BS on spying question

The director of national intelligence (DNI) has refused to say whether US spying agencies are using legislation specifically intended to cover only foreigners in order to spy on American citizens. The unclassified letter [PDF] from Dan Coats to Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) and released by the legislator, comes in response to a …
Kieren McCarthy, 13 Sep 2017

Wonder why Congress doesn't clamp down on its gung-ho spies? Well, wonder no more

Analysis When Edward Snowden revealed the extent of illegal operations carried out by American spy agencies, many wondered whether the US Congress was either unaware or had simply turned a blind eye toward them. Nevertheless, Congress did act, restricting some programs and declaring others illegal. Even the notoriously secretive FISA …

NSA enters stage two of its spying revival plan: Getting Trump onboard

Uncle Sam's intelligence agencies have embarked on the next stage of their plan to retain spying powers over US citizens: getting Donald Trump onboard. Knowing what we do about Donald's approach to policy issues, it seems unlikely that the American president is aware of what is going on. But somehow he has been persuaded to …
Kieren McCarthy, 31 Aug 2017

NSA ramps up PR campaign to keep its mass spying powers

The NSA has begun what is likely to be a determined PR campaign to retain mass spying laws as they head toward expiration at the end of the year. In a post on its website titled "Section 702 Saves Lives, Protects the Nation and Allies," America's surveillance nerve center argues it "relies" on the controversial part of the …
Kieren McCarthy, 25 Aug 2017
pwnie

Systemd wins top gong for 'lamest vendor' in Pwnie security awards

Black Hat The annual Pwnie Awards for serious security screw-ups saw hardly anyone collecting their prize at this year's ceremony in Las Vegas. That's not surprising: government officials, US spy agencies, and software makers aren’t usually in the mood to acknowledge their failures. The Pwnies give spray-painted pony statues to those …
Iain Thomson, 28 Jul 2017
Unlocked padlock

NSA had NFI about opsec: 2016 audit found laughably bad security

Second-rate opsec remained pervasive at the United States' National Security Agency, according to an August 2016 review now released under Freedom of Information laws. It's almost surprising that the agency was able to cuff Reality Winner, let alone prevent a wholesale Snowden-style leak. The Department of Defense Inspector …
Raiders of the lost ark

Ex-NSA bod sues US govt for 'illegally spying' on Americans: We drill into 'explosive' 'lawsuit'

Analysis In an extraordinary and expansive lawsuit, former CIA and NSA contractor Dennis Montgomery has teamed up with the lawyer who brought down the NSA's mass surveillance operation – Larry Klayman – to sue all the US intelligence services and their former and current heads personally, as well as former president Barack Obama, for …
Russian Doll using a computer

NSA leaker bust gets weirder: Senator claims hacking is wider than leak revealed

The strange tale of former NSA contractor Reality Winner just got stranger, after a US senator alleged the information she leaked about Russian hacking under-stated the extent of Russia's activities. Speaking to USA Today in the video below, Virginia senator Mark Warner, the senior Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee …
winner

Cuffed: Govt contractor 'used work PC to leak' evidence of Russia's US election hacking

A 25-year-old contractor has been charged with leaking NSA files that claim Russian intelligence hacked at least one maker of voting software used in 2016's US elections. Reality Leigh Winner, who held a top-secret clearance and worked at government tech provider Pluribus International, is accused of passing classified …
Iain Thomson, 6 Jun 2017

NSA takes one-two punch to the face

The US National Security Agency has been hit by two legal losses that may put the last part of its controversial spying program on US citizens under threat. In one case, brought by customers of AT&T and run by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), the NSA was ordered [PDF] to provide relevant evidence that would prove or …
Kieren McCarthy, 23 May 2017
vulnerability

Proposed PATCH Act forces US snoops to quit hoarding code exploits

Two US senators have proposed a law limiting American intelligence agencies' secret stockpiles of vulnerabilities found in products. The Protecting our Ability To Counter Hacking (PATCH) Act [PDF] would set up a board chaired by an Department of Homeland Security (DHS) official to assess security flaws spies have found in code …
Iain Thomson, 18 May 2017
ransomware

74 countries hit by NSA-powered WannaCrypt ransomware backdoor: Emergency fixes emitted by Microsoft for WinXP+

Special report The WannaCrypt ransomware worm, aka WanaCrypt or Wcry, today exploded across 74 countries, infecting hospitals, businesses including Fedex, rail stations, universities, at least one national telco, and more organizations. In response, Microsoft has released emergency security patches to defend against the malware for …
Iain Thomson, 13 May 2017

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