NYU Accidentally Exposed Military Code-breaking Computer Project to Entire Internet

The supercomputer described in the trove, “WindsorGreen,” was a system designed to excel at the sort of complex mathematics that underlies encryption, the technology that keeps data private, and almost certainly intended for use by the Defense Department’s signals intelligence wing, the National Security Agency. WindsorGreen was the successor to another password-cracking machine used by the NSA, “WindsorBlue,” which was also documented in the material leaked from NYU and which had been previously described in the Norwegian press thanks to a document provided by National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden. Both systems were intended for use by the Pentagon and a select few other Western governments, including Canada and Norway.

Fuente: NYU Accidentally Exposed Military Code-breaking Computer Project to Entire Internet


Japan Made Secret Deals With the NSA That Expanded Global Surveillance

The documents, published Monday in collaboration with Japanese news broadcaster NHK, reveal the complicated relationship the NSA has maintained with Japan over a period of more than six decades. Japan has allowed NSA to maintain at least three bases on its territory and contributed more than half a billion dollars to help finance the NSA’s facilities and operations. In return, NSA has kitted out Japanese spies with powerful surveillance tools and shared intelligence with them. However, there is a duplicitous dimension to the partnership. While the NSA has maintained friendly ties with its Japanese counterparts and benefited from their financial generosity, at the same time it has secretly spied on Japanese officials and institutions.

Fuente: Japan Made Secret Deals With the NSA That Expanded Global Surveillance


Apple Says It Fixed CIA Vulnerabilities Years Ago

Yesterday, WikiLeaks released its latest batch of pilfered CIA material, five documents describing malicious software for taking over Apple MacBooks and iPhones, and wrote in an accompanying post that “the CIA has been infecting the iPhone supply chain of its targets,” prompting concerned readers to wonder if their iPhone or MacBook had been infected on the factory floor. In a statement, Apple says that is almost certainly not the case.

Fuente: Apple Says It Fixed CIA Vulnerabilities Years Ago


Ex-Yahoo Employee: Government Spy Program Could Have Given a Hacker Access to All Email

Contrary to a denial by Yahoo and a report by the New York Times, the company’s scanning program, revealed earlier this week by Reuters, provided the government with a custom-built back door into the company’s mail service — and it was so sloppily installed that it posed a privacy hazard for hundreds of millions of users, according to a former Yahoo employee with knowledge of the company’s security practices.

Fuente: Ex-Yahoo Employee: Government Spy Program Could Have Given a Hacker Access to All Email


The NSA’s British Base at the Heart of U.S. Targeted Killing

in the heart of the tranquil English countryside, is the National Security Agency’s largest overseas spying base. Originally used to monitor Soviet communications through the Cold War, its focus has since dramatically shifted, and today it is a vital part of the NSA’s sprawling global surveillance network.

Fuente: The NSA’s British Base at the Heart of U.S. Targeted Killing


¿Que aprendí ayudando a clientes del Qatar National Bank (QNB)? Somos tan fuertes, somos tan débiles

Experiencia personal respecto a la fuga de datos del Qatar National Bank, el banco más grande en la Península Arábica.

Fuente: ¿Que aprendí ayudando a clientes del Qatar National Bank (QNB)? Somos tan fuertes, somos tan débiles


Facing Data Deluge, Secret U.K. Spying Report Warned of Intelligence Failure

A secret report warned that British spies may have put lives at risk because their surveillance systems were sweeping up more data than could be analyzed, leading them to miss clues to possible security threats.

Fuente: Facing Data Deluge, Secret U.K. Spying Report Warned of Intelligence Failure


El imperio ‘Ilegal’ de Hacking Team en América Latina | Motherboard

A principios de Abril de 2014, un espía del servicio de inteligencia de Ecuador mandó una serie de correos electrónicos al servicio al cliente de Hacking Team, una compañía italiana de hackers pagados que trabaja con agencias gubernamentales alrededor del mundo.

Fuente: El imperio ‘Ilegal’ de Hacking Team en América Latina | Motherboard


El auge del software de vigilancia en América Latina – Derechos Digitales

El software de Hacking Team es contrario a los estándares legales y violatorio de los derechos a la privacidad, a la libertad de expresión y al debido proceso.

Fuente: El auge del software de vigilancia en América Latina – Derechos Digitales


The government will hide its surveillance programs. But they won't eliminate them | Trevor Timm | Comment is free | The Guardian

The government will hide its surveillance programs. But they won’t eliminate them | Trevor Timm | Comment is free | The Guardian.

 Wnsahen will the government stop listening in to our conversations? Photograph: age fotostock / Alamy/Alamy

Want to see how secrecy is corrosive to democracy? Look no further than a series of explosive investigations by various news organizations this week that show the government hiding surveillance programs purely to prevent a giant public backlash.

USA Today’s Brad Heath published a blockbuster story on Monday about the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) running a massive domestic spying operation parallel to the NSA’s that was tracking billions of international calls made by Americans. They kept it secret for more than two decades. According to the USA Today report, the spying program was not only used against alleged terrorist activity, but countless supposed drug crimes, as well as “to identify US suspects in a wide range of other investigations”. And they collected information on millions of completely innocent Americans along the way.

Heath’s story is awash with incredible detail and should be read in full, but one of the most interesting parts was buried near the end: the program was shut down by the Justice Department after the Snowden leaks, not because Snowden exposed the program, but because they knew that when the program eventually would leak, the government would have no arguments to defend it.

The justification they were using for the NSA’s program – that it was only being used against dangerous terrorists, not ordinary criminals – just wasn’t true with the DEA. The public would clearly be outraged by the twisted legal justification that radically re-interpreted US law in complete secrecy. “They couldn’t defend both programs”, a former Justice Department official told Heath. The piece also reveals that Attorney General Eric “didn’t think we should have that information” in the first place, which is interesting because Holder was one of the first Justice Department officials to approve the program during the Clinton administration. It’s nice he came to his senses, but if the program never risked going public, would he have felt the same?

There are many other surveillance programs the government is desperate to keep hidden. Consider Stingray devices, the mini fake cell phone towers that can vacuum up cell phone data of entire neighborhoods at the same time and which are increasingly being used by local cops all around the country. The Associated Press reported this week that the Baltimore police have used these controversial devices thousands of times in the course of ordinary investigations and have tried to hide how the devices are used from judges.

The lengths to which the FBI will go to keep these devices secret from the public is alarming. As a Guardian investigation detailed on Friday, the FBI makes local police that use them sign non-disclosure agreements, and goes as far as to direct them to dismiss charges against potential criminals if the phone surveillance will be exposed at trial (like is required by due process rights in the Fifth Amendment).


Documents Reveal Canada’s Secret Hacking Tactics – The Intercept

Documents Reveal Canada’s Secret Hacking Tactics – The Intercept.

Featured photo - Documents Reveal Canada’s Secret Hacking Tactics

Canada’s electronic surveillance agency has secretly developed an arsenal of cyber weapons capable of stealing data and destroying adversaries’ infrastructure, according to newly revealed classified documents.

Communications Security Establishment, or CSE, has also covertly hacked into computers across the world to gather intelligence, breaking into networks in Europe, Mexico, the Middle East, and North Africa, the documents show.

The revelations, reported Monday by CBC News in collaboration with The Intercept, shine a light for the first time on how Canada has adopted aggressive tactics to attack, sabotage, and infiltrate targeted computer systems.

The latest disclosures come as the Canadian government debates whether to hand over more powers to its spies to disrupt threats as part of the controversial anti-terrorism law, Bill C-51.

Christopher Parsons, a surveillance expert at the University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab, told CBC News that the new revelations showed that Canada’s computer networks had already been “turned into a battlefield without any Canadian being asked: Should it be done? How should it be done?”

According to documents obtained by The Intercept from National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden, CSE has a wide range of powerful tools to perform “computer network exploitation” and “computer network attack” operations. These involve hacking into networks to either gather intelligence or to damage adversaries’ infrastructure, potentially including electricity, transportation or banking systems. The most well-known example of a state-sponsored “attack” operation involved the use of Stuxnet, a computer worm that was reportedly developed by the United States and Israel to sabotage Iranian nuclear facilities.


NSA Claims Iran Learned from Western Cyberattacks – The Intercept

NSA Claims Iran Learned from Western Cyberattacks – The Intercept.

Featured photo - NSA Claims Iran Learned from Western Cyberattacks

The U.S. Government often warns of increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks from adversaries, but it may have actually contributed to those capabilities in the case of Iran.

top secret National Security Agency document from April 2013 reveals that the U.S. intelligence community is worried that the West’s campaign of aggressive and sophisticated cyberattacks enabled Iran to improve its own capabilities by studying and then replicating those tactics.

The NSA is specifically concerned that Iran’s cyberweapons will become increasingly potent and sophisticated by virtue of learning from the attacks that have been launched against that country. “Iran’s destructive cyber attack against Saudi Aramco in August 2012, during which data was destroyed on tens of thousands of computers, was the first such attack NSA has observed from this adversary,” the NSA document states. “Iran, having been a victim of a similar cyber attack against its own oil industry in April 2012, has demonstrated a clear ability to learn from the capabilities and actions of others.”

The document was provided to The Intercept by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, and was prepared in connection with a planned meeting with Government Communications Headquarters, the British surveillance agency. The document references joint surveillance successes such as “support to policymakers during the multiple rounds of P5 plus 1 negotiations,” referring to the ongoing talks between the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, Germany and Iran to forge an agreement over Iran’s nuclear program.


How to Leak to The Intercept – The Intercept

How to Leak to The Intercept – The Intercept.

Featured photo - How to Leak to The Intercept

People often tell reporters things their employers, or their government, want to keep suppressed. But leaking can serve the public interest, fueling revelatory and important journalism.

This publication was created in part as a platform for journalism arising from unauthorized disclosures by NSA contractor Edward Snowden. Our founders and editors are strongly committed to publishing stories based on leaked material when that material is newsworthy and serves the public interest. So ever since The Intercept launched, our staff has tried to put the best technology in place to protect our sources. Our website has been protected with HTTPS encryption from the beginning. All of our journalists publish their PGP keys on their staff profiles so that readers can send them encrypted email. And we’ve been running a SecureDrop server, an open source whistleblower submission system, to make it simpler and more secure for anonymous sources to get in touch with us.

But caution is still advised to those who want to communicate with us without exposing their real-world identities.


Nueva documentación de Snowden: La NSA vigila los cambios en servidores de internet

Nueva documentación de Snowden: La NSA vigila los cambios en servidores de internet.


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Escrito por Pablo Elorduy / Diagonal
Jueves, 29 de Enero de 2015 00:00

Documentos publicados por Filtrala.org exponen que la agencia utiliza un programa camuflado para obtener metadatos de los servidores DNS y las direcciones HTTP. 

El programa Morecowbell (literalmente “más cencerro”, que tomaría su nombre de un popular skecth de Saturday Night Life) vuelve a poner en evidencia las maniobras de la Agencia de Seguridad Nacional estadounidense, NSA.

Documentos secretos publicados el 24 de enero por Filtrala.org, plataforma en la que participan eldiario.es, La Marea, Mongolia y Diagonal, y la web AWP, demuestran cómo la NSA está utilizando una estructura de camuflaje para hacer solicitudes a los servidores DNS, base del sistema de nombres de dominios a través del que funciona el internet que conocemos. Los documentos, en forma de presentación del tipo powerpoint, muestran las estrategias usadas por la NSA para que sus solicitudes de información a los DNS, miles cada hora, queden camufladas. El objetivo, obtener los metadatos (por ejemplo registros de llamadas, tráfico de internet o datos de localización) sobre servicios presentes en los DNS y las peticiones HTTP. Los documentos a los que Diagonal ha tenido acceso hoy detallan que la NSA ha alquilado servidores en Malasia, Alemania y Dinamarca.

La estructura utilizada es hasta cierto punto sencilla. La agencia tiene agencias de monitoreo que funcionan mediante varios bots morecowbell, que solicitan información DNS en común y solicitudes HTTP por separado al website de referencia, por ejemplo Filtrala.org. Esos bots envían la información directa y regularmente a la infraestructura de la NSA, que analiza los resultados.


Empresa busca ‘hácker’ | Tecnología | EL PAÍS

Empresa busca ‘hácker’ | Tecnología | EL PAÍS.


Algunas compañías se sirven de ‘piratas’ para que examinen sus debilidades

Jóvenes especialistas españoles hacen carrera en Estados Unidos

Asistentes a una feria informática en Londres. / C. R. (BLOOMBERG)

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“Puedes acompañarnos ahora o, si quieres, esperamos abajo hasta que vayas a comprar el pan”, le dijeron. Al salir del portal le pusieron las esposas y fue a comisaría. A. G. I. se lo olía. Era noviembre de 2012. Desde agosto, este experto en pirateo informático de 26 años que prefiere no dar su nombre, sabía que tarde o temprano recibiría esa visita.

La policía española se lo llevaba al calabozo durante algo menos de un día a comienzos de noviembre. La culpa, asegura, la tuvo su curiosidad. Vio una máquina expendedora de billetes en Atocha estropeada, se puso a investigar y descubrió que todos los archivos donde se guardaban las tarjetas de crédito de los clientes estaban accesibles en Internet, sin cifrar.

Cumple todos los requisitos para cubrir un puesto que no se publica en los listados de Linkedin, sino que se demuestra poniendo a prueba contraseñas, sistemas de seguridad, vigilancia y control. Sus formas rozan la frontera de la ley. Según Glassdoor, una web de comparación de perfiles y salarios, el salario de este tipo de háckers oscila entre 180.000 y el millón de dólares. Los expertos consultados prefieren no dar su suelto exacto, pero asegura que no se corresponde con la realidad.

“Mandé un correo a Renfe, pero nadie dijo nada”, se excusa con cara de no haber roto un plato. Profundizó en su conocimiento hasta alcanzar la hazaña que todo hácker sueña, presentar el caso en la DEFCON, la conferencia anual en Las Vegas. “Normalmente lleva más tiempo, introducirse en un sistema es sencillo de contar, pero tiene mucha reflexión y estrategia detrás”, aclara.

El salario de este tipo dehácker profesional oscila en EE UU entre 180.000 y un millón de dólares

Tras la charla comenzó su persecución, cuando su travesura comenzó a cobrar rango de hazaña. Por suerte, un acuerdo verbal y el compromiso de ayudar a solventar el fallo fueron suficiente para recobrar la libertad.

Entre el público se encontraba otro joven español, A. P., mánager senior de una empresa estadounidense, que también prefiere reservar su identidad. Allí mismo, se fijó en su compatriota. “Este tipo es peligroso, pero creo que lo podemos convertir”, pensó. Entonces habló con su jefe y su paisano entró a trabajar como penetration hacker (experto en colarse). En agosto hizo un año que comenzó la relación laboral y en octubre cumplirá el primero en San Francisco.

Esta modalidad va más allá de pantallas y teclados. Si hace falta físicamente, o con un disfraz, por todos los medios posibles en las empresas hasta conseguir una base de datos concreta, la clave del garaje o el sistema de turnos. “Me lo tomo como un reto y me pagan, muy bien, por romper cosas”, confiesa en el argot, para referirse a reventar la seguridad.

La pizza es su mejor aliada. “A todo el mundo le gustan, así que haces de repartidor y tienes el acceso casi asegurado a muchísimos lugares”, dice con expresión pícara. Nunca se ha lucrado por los ataques, es lo que se llama “sombrero blanco”, búsqueda de errores para alertar de los mismos, documentarlo y que se corrijan. Solo ataca a su compañía y a empresas integradas en esta. Una decena en los últimos dos años y varios edificios por toda la Bahía. El trabajo no termina nunca. Las comprobaciones son constantes. Cuando termina, comienza la ronda de nuevo para buscar nuevas filtraciones.

Quizá no sea el chico más popular de su empresa: “Pisas demasiados callos como para caer bien. A nadie le gusta que le digan que lo ha hecho mal, pero reflexionan y se dan cuenta de que es bueno ponerse a prueba”. A. P. dice que le parece natural que haya fallos: “La proporción es indicativa. Por cada 12 o 15 que crean algo, hay uno para ponerlo a prueba. Los humanos cometemos errores, por supuesto”. Él busca los que haya en el software. A. G. I. usa la ingeniería social, algo así como el conocimiento de los mecanismo humanos para caer en trampas. “El hombre es el eslabón más débil de la cadena. Donde hay un persona, puede haber una vulnerabilidad”, apunta.


Six things we know from the latest FinFisher documents | Privacy International

Six things we know from the latest FinFisher documents | Privacy International.

The publishing of materials from a support server belonging to surveillance-industry giant Gamma International has provided a trove of information for technologists, security researchers and activists. This has given the world a direct insight into a tight-knit industry, which demands secrecy for themselves and their clients, but ultimately assists in the violation human rights of ordinary people without care or reproach.

Now for the first time, there is solid confirmation of Gamma’s activities from inside the company’s own files, despite their denials, on their clients and support provided to a range of governments.

The Anglo-German company Gamma International is widely known for the intrusion software suite FinFisher, which was spun off into its own German-based company “FinFisher GmbH” sometime in 2013. The 40GB dump of internal documents, brochures, pricelists, logs, and support queries were made available through a Torrent first linked to on a Reddit post by the alleged hacker, who also set up a Twitter handle posting the documents.

While these documents do provide insight into FinFisher, Privacy International does not support any attempt to compromise the security of any company’s network or servers. Greater transparency is needed from this sector, and from Governments on this growing industry to ensure that every businesses obligation to respect human rights is met.

Some documents provide new information; others support and verify previous claims about the company. Privacy International is still reviewing and analysing all the documents, so we expect more information to come out of these documents in the near future.


How the NSA Plans to Infect 'Millions' of Computers with Malware – The Intercept

How the NSA Plans to Infect ‘Millions’ of Computers with Malware – The Intercept.

By  and 549
Featured photo - How the NSA Plans to Infect ‘Millions’ of Computers with MalwareOne presentation outlines how the NSA performs “industrial-scale exploitation” of computer networks across the world.

Top-secret documents reveal that the National Security Agency is dramatically expanding its ability to covertly hack into computers on a mass scale by using automated systems that reduce the level of human oversight in the process.

The classified files – provided previously by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden – contain new details about groundbreaking surveillance technology the agency has developed to infect potentially millions of computers worldwide with malware “implants.” The clandestine initiative enables the NSA to break into targeted computers and to siphon out data from foreign Internet and phone networks.

The covert infrastructure that supports the hacking efforts operates from the agency’s headquarters in Fort Meade, Maryland, and from eavesdropping bases in the United Kingdom and Japan. GCHQ, the British intelligence agency, appears to have played an integral role in helping to develop the implants tactic.

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.