The U.S. Was Hacked for MONTHS, Here’s What We Know So Far


From Seeker.

In December of 2020, US cybersecurity firm FireEye detected a cyber attack on an unprecedented scale. This leaves us to ask, how did the attack happen, and what will it take to recover?
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The U.S. has an ongoing contentious relationship with Russia in cyberspace. Each country has access to the other’s power grid, and Russian intelligence is credited with breaking into the email servers of the White House, State Department, and Joint Chiefs of Staff in 2014 and 2015.

So, when news of the latest intrusion broke, federal authorities and cybersecurity experts named Russia as the most likely culprit. Russia for its part denies any involvement. You may be wondering how the hackers managed to gain access to such a wide breadth of networks, including those of the U.S. Departments of Treasury, Commerce, Energy, and State.

While multiple vendors that work with the U.S. government like Microsoft were attacked, most of the affected networks we know about so far can be traced to a Texas-based company called SolarWinds. SolarWinds provides network monitoring and management tools. Its flagship software, called Orion, is used by over 33,000 companies.

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Read More:

Hacked U.S. government networks will need to be burned “down to the ground”
"It’s not known exactly what the hackers were seeking, but experts say it could include nuclear secrets, blueprints for advanced weaponry and information for dossiers on key government and industry leaders. That means many federal workers — and others in the private sector — will have to presume that unclassified networks are teeming with spies."

SolarWinds: company at the core of the Orion hack falls under scrutiny
"SolarWinds estimated in a financial filing that about 18,000 customers had installed the compromised software, meaning many of them were vulnerable to spy operations at some time this year."

An Unprecedented Look at Stuxnet, the World’s First Digital Weapon
"Stuxnet, as it came to be known, was unlike any other virus or worm that came before. Rather than simply hijacking targeted computers or stealing information from them, it escaped the digital realm to wreak physical destruction on equipment the computers controlled."


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