Boston hackers Attacked on Trump and Biden campaigns: Google says state-based Hackers have attacked on the campaigns of both President Donald Trump and previous Vice President Joe Biden, in spite of the fact that none of the attempts was successful.
The company confirmed the findings on Thursday after Shane Huntley, director of its threat analysis group, revealed the efforts on Twitter.
Huntley said a Chinese group known as Hurricane Panda targeted Trump campaign staff, while an Iranian organisation known as the Charming Cat tried to breach Biden campaign workers’ accounts. Such phishing attempts usually involve fake emails with links that cut passwords or infect malware.
The effort targeted personal e-mail accounts of staff in both campaigns, according to the company. A Google spokesman added:
“The timeline is current and one or two people have been targeted in both campaigns.” He did not say how many.
Google said it sent “warning to our standard government-backed attack” to target users and referred incidents to federal law enforcement.
Graham Brooke, director of the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab, called the announcement
“a major revelation of potential cyber-influencing operations, as we saw in 2016.”
His tweet referred to the Russian hacking of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and the subsequent online release of internal emails – some documented – that U.S. investigators were trying to help the Trump campaign. Of
Neither Biden nor the Trump campaign will say how many staff members were targeted as a result of the effort, whether the phishing was successful or not.
Both campaigns have been extremely reluctant to discuss cyber security.
“Trump’s campaign has been told that foreign actors have tried unsuccessfully to infringe on our staff technology,” the campaign said in a statement.
“We are vigilant about cybersecurity and take any precautionary measures. Don’t discuss. “
The Biden campaign also did not confirm the attempt.
“We are aware of reports from Google that a foreign actor has made unsuccessful attempts to access campaign staff’s personal e-mail accounts,” he said in a statement.
“We are going to be the target of such attacks and we are ready for them.”
Hurricane Panda, also known to security researchers as Zirconium or APT31, stands for “Modern Permanent Threat” – known for focusing on property theft and other spies. The charming kitten, also known as Newscaster and APT35, has also targeted US and Middle Eastern government officials and businesses for information theft and espionage.
In October, Microsoft said hackers affiliated with the Iranian government had targeted the US presidential campaign, and the New York Times and Reuters had targeted Target as a re-election campaign. Campaign spokesman Tim Morto said at the time that
“there is no indication that any of our campaign infrastructure has been targeted.”
Keith Alexander, a former director of the National Security Agency, said during an online seminar on Thursday that he fully expects US geopolitical rivals to take advantage of the COVID-19 crisis and unrest in the United States.
“I think it is a growing time for the opposition to hurt our country and I think they will do so during the election,” he said.