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Russian gang hijacks Windows to spy on NATO member governments

Russian gang hijacks Windows to spy on NATO member governments

If you haven't already updated your copy of Windows, you'll definitely want to after you read this.

Russian hackers have been hitting government targets with a secret exploit that has, until now, been completely untraceable. This security hole affects all versions of Windows as well as Windows Server 2008 and 2012.

The hack was discovered by iSIGHT, a cybersecurity research team collaborating with Microsoft. The exploit lets hackers stuff malware into PowerPoint slideshows. Once installed, the virus lets hackers steal files and snoop on a computer.

If you haven't done it already, be sure to check out every app you should update for today's Patch Tuesday. Click here to do just that.

iSIGHT identified six primary targets:

iSIGHT_Partners_sandworm_targets_13oct2014

  • NATO
  • Ukrainian government organizations
  • Western European government organizations
  • European telecommunications firm
  • Polish energy sector firms
  • An unnamed U.S. academic organization

The scary part about this hack is that this vulnerability has been present in every Windows machine during August of 2013. While the only way for a hacker to get this malware onto a computer is through social engineering, it appears that the hackers may have been successful.

That means that amateur revolutionaries can commit dangerous hacks online. After the latest wave of dangerous retail hacks, I think that this is something that we should all be worried about.

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