Russia is being accused of yet another attack on the US Department of Defense. This time, the country's government supposedly used Twitter to send malware-laced messages to more than 10,000 DoD employees.
According to a report published by Time, the messages offered links to stories on recent sporting events or the Oscars. When clicked, the links led to a Russian-control server that downloaded malware allowing hackers to take control over the victim's device, be it phone or computer, as well as the Twitter account.
While email phishing campaigns have normally been used for such purposes, it seems that this time they're moving towards Twitter's Direct Messages.
The information published by Time comes from a report created for US counterintelligence officials in Washington. The fact that the malware-via-Twitter campaign targeted DoD employees, had the intelligence officials wondering what kind of damage could Russia do with thousands of Twitter handles from the US armed forces speaking in the same voice, sending the same message.
On top of this new phishing method, other details about the Russian operations in the United States are revealed. For instance, a Russian soldier based in Ukraine impersonates a 42-year-old American housewife posting on social media to influence political debates.
This type of masquerade has been quite a problem during the US elections last year. In fact, networks of bot accounts have been discovered on Twitter. These accounts had no followers and were impersonating American teens, while constantly retweeting pro-Trump messages.
"Using these technologies, it is possible to undermine democratic government, and it's becoming easier every day," Rand Waltzman of the Rand Corp told Time. Waltzman ran a Pentagram research program to understand the propaganda threats posed by social media.
It has long been known that Russia had a hand in the results of the 2016 US Presidential elections, especially as Trump is being investigated for colluding with the Russians.
网络安全法网络宣传片 002 国家网络安全的现状与重要性概述