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NSA security breach & 'Shadow Brokers'

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Latest NSA breach "far exceeds" Edward Snowden leaks -

Why it matters: "[T]he flood of digital secrets ... is raising profound questions. Have hackers and leakers made secrecy obsolete? Has Russian intelligence simply outplayed the United States, penetrating the most closely guarded corners of its government?"

The hackers, calling themselves the Shadow Brokers, are a "mysterious group that ... somehow obtained many of the hacking tools the United States used to spy on other countries":

  • "[T]here is broad agreement that the damage from the Shadow Brokers already far exceeds the harm to American intelligence done by Edward J. Snowden, the former N.S.A. contractor who fled with four laptops of classified material in 2013."
  • "Snowden released code words, while the Shadow Brokers have released the actual code."


& https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/12/us/nsa-shadow-brokers.html

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"A 15-month ongoing investigation has found that the Kremlin is the prime suspect in the leak of various cyber weapons, along with the help of an unknown insider. The group in possession of the stolen NSA secrets, the Shadow Brokers, has so far wreaked havoc across the world.

“Created at huge expense to American taxpayers, those cyber weapons have now been picked up by hackers from North Korea to Russia and shot back at the United States and its allies,” the New York Times reported on Sunday....


Experts blame the agency for focusing too much on offensive capabilities and not enough on its cyberdefense.

The U.S. has been embroiled in a cyber rivalry with Russia since at least 2014 when American security researchers exposed Russian state-sponsored hacking groups. The Russians did not take the move lightly and began improving its cyber capabilities.

Since then, Russian hackers are suspected to have influenced last year’s presidential election by hacking into the Democratic Party’s national committee computers and releasing unfavorable emails from members of Hillary Clinton’s campaign.

Russian hackers have also recently targeted companies and individuals outside of the United States, such as Ukrainian officers and Russian opposition figures.



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