The electronic theft of proprietary information from U.S. companies has reached the level of grand larceny on a national scale. One declassified government estimate put the value of information stolen in the last year -- everything from blueprints to merger plans -- at almost $500 billion. In October, breaking with diplomatic niceties, the Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive characterized “Chinese actors” as “the world’s most active and persistent perpetrators of economic espionage.” More...
The assistance from the agency that conducts electronic spying overseas is part of an effort by American banks and other financial firms to get help from the U.S. military and private defense contractors to fend off cyber attacks, according to interviews with U.S. officials, security experts and defense industry executives.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has also warned banks of particular threats amid concerns that hackers could potentially exploit security vulnerabilities to wreak havoc across global markets and cause economic mayhem.
While government and private sector security sources are reluctant to discuss specific lines of investigations, they paint worst-case scenarios of hackers ensconcing themselves inside a bank's network to disable trading systems for stocks, bonds and currencies, trigger flash crashes, initiate large transfers of funds or turn off all ATM machines. More...
Stuxnet was a highly complex piece of malware created to spy on and disrupt Iran's nuclear programme.
No-one has identified the worm authors but the finger of suspicion fell on the Israeli and US governments.
The new threat, Duqu is, according to those who discovered it, "a precursor to a future Stuxnet-like attack".
Its discovery was made public by security firm Symantec, which in turn was alerted to the threat by one of its customers. More...
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