Published: Sun, April 16, 2017
Tech | By Constance Martin

USA government suffers 'mother of all security leaks'

USA government suffers 'mother of all security leaks'

Although some records bear NSA seals, their authenticity has yet to be confirmed.

It may be recalled that a year ago, hacking tools that were confirmed to belong to the NSA's so-called Equation Group were stolen in one of the biggest breaches of classified files since the Edward Snowden revelations. As advised by Microsoft, people using previous versions of Windows prior to Windows 7 should start thinking about updating the computer's operating system.

Also, as you might already be aware, Microsoft acknowledges the individuals or groups who help them weed out vulnerabilities in its system (even awards them via bug bounty programs) but one of the issues patched in March has no name attached to it.

Coverage for the exploits and tools disclosed by the Shadow Brokers is available through Cisco's security products, services, and open source technologies. Under a White House process established by former President Barack Obama's staff, companies were usually warned about unsafe flaws.

The files contained several "zero day" exploits - vulnerabilities that were previously unknown to the companies that create the software, or the security community at large. Snowden wasn't having any of that, tweeting back: "Their systems were inarguably and very seriously hacked", with a follow up tweet of "This is not a drill".

"They may have been used to target a global banking system". Hackers could potentially use the released exploits to hack into banks. The security threat is apparently reduced in just few hours.

Swift, which is headquartered in Belgium, said: "We have no evidence to suggest that there has ever been any unauthorised access to our network or messaging services".

Government: 36 Islamic State fighters killed by massive bomb
On Thursday, President Donald Trump called it a "very successful mission" and said he's "very proud of our military". Popular Mechanics described it as weighing as much as an F-16 fighter jet. "It is upon us, Afghans, to stop U.S. ".

SWIFT is an worldwide messaging network used by 10,000 banks in 212 countries to send information about financial transactions, including money transfers.

The opinion was seconded by Matthew Hickey of Prestbury, England-based cybersecurity company Hacker House.

"This would make a lot of sense that the NSA compromise this specific SWIFT Service Bureau for Anti-money laundering (AML) reasons in order to retrieve ties with terrorists groups", Suiche wrote.

"That's information you can only get if you compromise the system", he said.

Since the early 1990s, interrupting the flow of money from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and elsewhere to al-Qaida, the Taliban and other militant Islamic groups in Afghanistan, Pakistan and other countries has been a major objective of USA and allied intelligence agencies. The NSA is now facing criticism for not sharing details of the exploits with Microsoft once it became clear the tools were in the hands of a hacking group.

Now it seems that the NSA gained access to SWIFT customer accounts through one of SWIFT's service bureaus to monitor money flow in the Middle East, although EastNets has denied the claim.

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