March 17, 2018

Group linked to NSA spy leaks threatens sale of new tech secrets

19 May 2017, 08:06 | Marlene Myers

They're planning to release more NSA hacking tools in June, offering access to them to anyone willing to pay.

"In June, TheShadowBrokers is announcing "TheShadowBrokers Data Dump of the Month" service", it said.

The group's monthly data dump could also include hacking exploits for web browsers, routers, and operating systems including Windows 10.

WannaCry ransomware attack might have slowed down, but it has managed to infect over 300,000 computers globally, with many businesses and even hospitals losing access to precious data.

Interestingly enough, the NSA exploits the Shadow Brokers have may have come from a former NSA contractor who is said to have absconded with 50 terabytes of classified data and upwards of 75% of the hacking tools used and developed by the NSA's Tailored Access Operations unit.

The group also has intelligence gathered by the NSA on foreign banks and ballistic missile programs, it said.

The Shadow Brokers hacking group is pushing a monthly subscription service offering members top secret information including "compromised network data" from the nuclear and ballistic missile programs of Russia, China, North Korea and Iran.

"Is being like wine of month club", said the blog post, which is written in broken English.

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The Shadow Brokers said it chose to share screenshots from the NSA Equation Group's lost 2013 Windows Ops Disk in January, with the understanding that the Equation Group would then tell Microsoft and the vulnerability would be patched.

The hacker group came to public attention previous year when it attempted to auction off a set of older cyber-spying tools, which it said was stolen from the US National Security Agency.

The attack stoked fears that the spy agency's powerful cyber weapons could now be turned to criminal use, ratcheting up cyber security threats to a whole new level.

The blog post criticizes the global technology giants and their relation with the U.S government. While later reports have questioned how much of a role the Shadow Brokers actually had in the leak of the exploits, what is known without a doubt is that the exploits in their possession did indeed originate from the NSA, as confirmed by the Snowden documents.

The tools and software exploits have been made generally available to both cybercriminals and security-inclined hackers, including the researcher who helped to disrupt the ransomware's spread.

While the Shadow Brokers has stressed the financial value of the stolen hacking tools it holds, in its response to the WannaCry attack it repeatedly states that its aim "is always being about theshadowbrokers vs theequationgroup". The US government has not commented directly on the matter.

Shadow Brokers directly attacks Microsoft exec Brad Smith, whose name was on the company's statement, calling him a "scumbag" and questioning his company's links to the NSA.

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