With the recent ransomware attack taking its toll on nearly a quarter of a million computers and affecting millions of users and their customers around the world, the question in the minds of many right now is, “How do I protect myself from something like this?” Fortunately, the solutions are simple, even if some of the biggest names in business around the globe missed them or were unable to use them.
A massive cyberattack on computers around the world on Friday could — and should — have been prevented. The blame for the cyberattack — a “ransomware” attack — rests on the NSA and Microsoft.
You might have heard about social-media and search engine censorship of conservative news sources: Twitter’s “shadowbanning,” Facebook’s news “curators,” and Google’s nine different blacklists. Well, The New American has some firsthand experience.
The latest release from WikiLeaks on the CIA’s hacking program — published Friday — reveals a tool CIA hackers use to attack a computer that is part of a Local Area Network (LAN). LANs are usually used to tie all of the computers in an office into a single network for the purposes of sharing resources including those used for security. This newly revealed CIA tool — codenamed Archimedes — turns the strength of a LAN against itself by leveraging any compromised computers against all others on the network.
Late last month, President Trump signed a controversial bill preventing new restrictions on Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from going into effect. The issue is sharply divided along party lines, with Democrats arguing that the restrictions are necessary to protect the personal data of users and Republicans arguing that the restrictions would favor websites over ISPs. The rights of the individual user are predictably caught in the crossfire and are not represented by either side.
The most recent release by WikiLeaks shows that the CIA has developed obfuscation tools for causing its hacks to be falsely attributed to foreign powers. And WikiLeaks has released not only the documents, but also the source code of those tools.
The most recent WikiLeaks disclosures, published last week, detail hacks developed by the CIA to penetrate iPhones and Mac laptops. The leaks — codenamed “Dark Matter” by WikiLeaks — show that the CIA had developed methods for installing surveillance malware on “factory fresh” iPhones as early as 2008. They also reveal that the agency has methods for injecting persistent malware into the firmware of Mac laptops.
The media have spun the recent story about CIA-developed hacking tools by claiming either that there's nothing to worry about, or that the problem is so severe that it is no longer possible to protect our privacy through encryption. In reality, privacy is under attack, but encryption still works.
Recent statements by the CIA and White House, coupled with the FBI's investigation into the source of leaked CIA documents and published by WikiLeaks, serve as admissions that the disclosures are genuine.