German Chancellor Angela Merkel may not be the only high-ranking leader from that country to be spied on by the National Security Agency.
German authorities are investigating whether the head of the German Federal Chancellery unit had his laptop infected with Regin, a highly sophisticated suite of malware programs that has been linked to the NSA and its British counterpart, the Government Communications Headquarters. Regin is among the most advanced pieces of malware ever discovered, with dozens of modules that can be used to customize attacks on targets in the telecommunications, hospitality, energy, airline, and research industries.Read more
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has fallen victim to hacking after a sophisticated computer virus was discovered on the USB drive of one of her aides. The Reign virus, which is believed to have been developed by US and British spying agencies, was detected after one of Mrs Merkel's employees plugged her personal drive into a work laptop.
The woman, who works in close contact with Mrs Merkel, had loaded a speech she was editing on to the drive, took it home to continue working on it, before returning to the office. As she went to plug the drive back into her work computer she was sent a firewall alert saying a virus had been detected.Read more
Hacking of computers at Belgian telecoms firm Belgacom, alleged to have been carried out by a British spy agency, was more far-reaching than previously thought and went undetected for more than two years.
News of the intrusion into Belgacom's networks first broke late last year when Belgium asked Britain, its NATO and European Union partner, to respond to allegations that its intelligence service was responsible. It said the malicious software found on Belgacom's systems was one of the most advanced spy tools ever identified by security researchers. Belgacom, Belgium's dominant telecoms provider, was seen as a top target by the British spy agency.Read more
Regin's complex nature suggests a nation state is behind the cyberespionage tool's development, Symantec reports. An advanced piece of malware has been uncovered, which has been in use as far back as 2008 to spy on governments, companies and individuals.
The cyberespionage tool uses several stealth features to avoid detection that required a significant investment of time and resources, suggesting it's the product of a nation state, the antivirus software maker warned, without suggesting which country was behind it. The malware's design makes it highly suited for long-term mass surveillance. Other infections were identified monitoring network traffic and analyzing email from Exchange databases.Read more