NSA Explores Infecting You With Malware

Recent documents outlining the NSA and GCHQ teaming up to automate malware installation across millions of private citizen’s machine in an effort named PROJECT TURBINE

A post this morning on The Intercept details the NSA‘s plans to infect ‘millions‘ of private citizen’s computers with malware, as well as plans to automate large portions of the process to “reduce the level of human oversight in the process.” We recently explored the NSA and GCHQ joining forces to conduct mass surveillance without due process across Yahoo Messenger, and today’s report from The Intercept shows the bond between these two agencies is strong as ever.

UPDATE: The Intercept provides more information on  QUANTUMHAND‘s functionality allowing the NSA to spoof Facebook to spy on citizens

How the NSA Plans to Infect ‘Millions’ of Computers with Malware [via The Intercept]

In some cases the NSA has masqueraded as a fake Facebook server, using the social media site as a launching pad to infect a target’s computer and exfiltrate files from a hard drive. In others, it has sent out spam emails laced with the malware, which can be tailored to covertly record audio from a computer’s microphone and take snapshots with its webcam. The hacking systems have also enabled the NSA to launch cyberattacks by corrupting and disrupting file downloads or denying access to websites.

Snake Cyberweapon Unleashed in Ukraine

Ukraine has already been in the news this week with an escalation of traditional military forces however reports of cyber-weaponry being used are starting to surface.

We recently added Krebs On Security to the sidebar, and now that it’s starting to pick up pace expect more cybercrime stories to appear here. Ukraine has already been in the news this week with an escalation of traditional military forces however reports of cyber-weaponry being used are starting to surface.

Cyber Snake plagues Ukraine networks [via FinancialTimes]

{A]ccording to clues left in the code, parts of which also contain fragments of Russian text. It is believed to be an upgrade of the Agent.BTZ attack that penetrated US military systems in 2008.

BAE has identified 56 apparent infections by Snake globally since 2010, almost all in the past 14 months. Ukraine is the primary target, with 32 recorded instances, 22 of which have occurred since January 2013.

The Way Of The Knife

The Way Of The Knife: The CIA, a Secret Army, and a War at the Ends of the Earth by Mark Mazzetti seemed like a good start. Imagine the craziest international spy novel you’ve ever read – except, everything is real. The people, the places, the events. Everything.

In the midst of talking about what I think about food and music so often, it’s time I read a book (or at least talk about one I’ve read.)

The Way Of The Knife: The CIA, a Secret Army, and a War at the Ends of the Earth by Mark Mazzetti seemed like a good start. Imagine the craziest international spy novel you’ve ever read – except, everything is real. The people, the places, the events. Everything.

This book does not answer all the questions but if you want a fundamental understand of how the CIA evolved from a risk-averse spy agency into America’s clandestine military apparatus, this account from Pulitzer winner Mark Mazzetti is a good place to start. I know most of you who read this blog know my politics, but I will do my best to spare you from them in this particular post – other than I advise everybody read this, and do so with an open mind.

I do not profess to be the greatest at reviewing books, so if you’re looking for more detail on why you should read this, here are reviews from NY Times, NPR, Goodreads, and the requisite Amazon page.