New evidence by Kaspersky researchers suggests that the hacking group could be NSA personnel in disguise
Kaspersky reveals that the so called “Equation group” cyber hackers could be NSA personnel in disguise
It was almost after 2 years since the Snowden leaks that Russian firm Kaspersky Lab’s Global Research and Analysis Team presented a report last month where it clearly showed that NSA i.e. National Security Agency is the major suspect in global hacking campaign which attacks the firmware of the hard drives. The action of this hacking group was termed as “Equation Group” by Kaspersky due to the advanced methods used by the hackers to carry out its actions.
The new report which Kaspersky’s researchers published on Wednesday shows that the term “BACKSNARF” was one of the terms which was used by the Equation Group in one of their codes in their online platform and on the other hand NSA’s cyber warfare unit was using the same term for one of its project.
Hence now Kaspersky researchers feel that the hacking group is actually the NSA personnel in disguise. This cyber hacking group has used the firmware method to put a backdoor in the hard drives at the boot level and it has been held responsible for 500 malware infections across 42 countries by now.
NSA seems to have used the firmware method to infect the computer’s primarily in Iran, Russia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, India, Syria and Mali at the top of the list. Kaspersky researchers say it is difficult to arrive at an absolute number of infections done by the Equation Group because of a self-destruct mechanism built into the malware however they feel that majorly NSA victims are centred in critical fields including aerospace, nuclear research, government, telecommunications, Islamic activists, energy, and industries, financial concerns, encryption technologies and infrastructure supply chains.
Kaspersky is not directly pointing at the Equation Group which is a software development team in US. However, Kaspersky suspects that the Equation Group does have some tie up with the US NSA because the kind of cyber hacking which is carried out by the Equation Group does need a strong backup from the higher personnel to carry out their sophisticated activities. The Equation Group aka NSA seems to have used the firmware method to infect some of the prime rivals of US as in Iran, Russia.