An Israeli company’s spyware was used in attempted and successful hacks of 37 smartphones belonging to journalists, government officials and human rights activists around the world, according to an investigation by 17 media organizations, published on July 18th.
One of the organizations, The Washington Post, said the Pegasus spyware licensed by Israel-based NSO Group also was used to target phones belonging to two women close to Jamal Khashoggi, a Post columnist murdered at a Saudi consulate in Turkey in 2018.
Nuclear weapons agency among those breached by state-sponsored hackers.
Dan Goodin ArsTechnica December 17, 2020
The supply chain attack used to breach federal agencies and at least one private company poses a “grave risk” to the United States, in part because the attackers likely used means other than just the SolarWinds backdoor to penetrate networks of interest, federal officials said on Thursday. One of those networks belongs to the National Nuclear Security Administration, which is responsible for the Los Alamos and Sandia labs, according to a report from Politico.
“This adversary has demonstrated an ability to exploit software supply chains and shown significant knowledge of Windows networks,” officials with the Cybersecurity Infrastructure and Security Agency wrote in an alert. “It is likely that the adversary has additional initial access vectors and tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) that have not yet been discovered.” CISA, as the agency is abbreviated, is an arm of the Department of Homeland Security.
Elsewhere, officials wrote: “CISA has determined that this threat poses a grave risk to the Federal Government and state, local, tribal, and territorial governments as well as critical infrastructure entities and other private sector organizations.”