Posted on May 18, 2017 at 10:24 AM
Shadow Brokers, the organization well known for their hacking tool leaks, threatens to unleash another wave of stolen data and tools. This group has also claimed responsibility for releasing the tools used for spreading the ransomware called WannaCry, that caused major damage to the devices around the world last weekend.
This time, however, they claim to be in possession of a new set of tools, as well as new vulnerabilities. It’s believed that this flawed software might be a part of Windows 10, that’s the Operating System on more than 500 million devices.
The group has left yet another blog post, written in their usual broken English, and in it, they claim to have even more Ops Disks. They also claim that they’ve stolen them from the NSA too. The group has even included several more exploits, including the ones for smartphones, browsers, routers, as well as data from the money transfer network called Swift, and even the data related to the missile programs and nukes from Iran, China, North Korea, and Russia.
The post also says that the first data dump will happen in June, with another one in every month that follows. They’ve even gone as far as to organize and launch a subscription model. That way, their tools and data dumps will be available to their ‘members’, which are free to do whatever they want with the info and tools.
However, they’ve also left open the possibility of buying all of the tools and data at once, in which case they wouldn’t dump anything else. This certainly means that they might be willing to return the stolen data to NSA, for a price.
It’s still unknown what are the group motives. They seem to not be interested into bug bounties, or selling to what they call ‘cyber thugs’. Instead, they seem to be in search of ‘worthy opponents’, that they’d enjoy taking down. It’s believed that their main ‘opponent’ currently is a hacking team controlled by the NSA.
Now, when it comes to whether or not the Brokers actually have the data they claim to possess, many experts believe that they do. After all, they did become known after their failed auction in which they tried to sell tools and data stolen from the NSA. It’s even discovered that the WannaCry ransomware was only possible because of the tools that Shadow Brokers released. These events even re-started the discussion about whether or not should agencies like the NSA unveil the tools and vulnerabilities that they’ve found so that both businesses, as well as consumers, could defend themselves from the future attacks.
This is especially true now after the WannaCry attack turned out to be so devastatingly destructive and dangerous. So far, the NSA hasn’t made a comment about any of these issues, including the Brokers themselves.
As we mentioned, there’s a doubt that they even have additional tools and data to release, but mentioning Windows 10 was enough to fire up Microsoft, as well as the company’s partners. Even the corporations that are using Windows don’t feel safe, which might be the goal of the hackers.
Marcy Wheeler, the security researcher, has mentioned this theory as well and stated that even without the new leak, the Shadow Brokers have managed to start a hostility between the government and Microsoft.
As for Microsoft themselves, they’ve stated that the company’s aware of the Shadow Brokers’ latest claim and that their teams are readily monitoring all the potential threats.