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Cyberespionage operation 'The Mask' compromised organizations in 30-plus countries

Lucian Constantin | Feb. 11, 2014
A cyberespionage operation that used highly sophisticated multi-platform malware went undetected for more than five years and compromised computers belonging to hundreds of government and private organizations in more than 30 countries.

"Nation-state-level cyber-offensive operations can lurk in the dark for many years before being discovered and fully analyzed," said Igor Soumenkov, principal security researcher at Kaspersky Lab, via email. "Sometimes, samples are detected, but the researchers lack the data to make a 'big picture' out of it. With Careto, we tried not just to analyze the attack against Kaspersky products, but to understand what is the big picture."

Soumenkov believes the use of the Spanish language and the compilation date of the oldest sample suggest that state-sponsored attackers from countries other than China, Russia or the U.S. have been running cyberespionage attacks longer than previously thought.

 

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