Secret Service, FBI Investigating Multiple Hacks of NASDAQ Computer Networks
According to the Wall Street Journal (link below), "hackers have repeatedly penetrated the computer network of the company that runs the Nasdaq Stock Market during the past year".
According to one person "involved in the matter", the hackers have not done anything malicious (so far) during their exploits - instead, they have simply "looked around".
The FBI and Secret Service are both currently involved in trying to nab the hackers and figure out what their motives might be.
According to the WSJ article, the NASDAQ's trading platform wasn't compromised.
In 1999, at the height of the dot-com boom, the NASDAQ and AMEX web sites were both hacked. Hackers reportedly gained access to the web sites through flaws in Microsoft's Internet Information Servers. The attack, which was reportedly carried out by the hacker group "United Loan Gunmen" (ULG), resulted in a mock news story being posted on both sites. According to Wired.com, the front page of NASDAQ.com was changed to read:
"The Elite Computer Hacking group ULG [United Loan Gunmen] uprooted the Nasdaq Stock Market Web Site... Their goal was to attempt to make stocks rise drastically, thus making all investors happy, hopefully ending with the investors putting bumper stickers on their Mercedez [sic] that say 'Thanks ULG!"
At the time, NASDAQ officials denied that any break-in had taken place, leading many people to say - Huh?
Thankfully for the NASDAQ and AMEX, the hackers were unable to gain access to internal networks that could have resulted in much greater damage taking place.
Although the NASDAQ's trading platform was reportedly not compromised, this most recent hack is certainly more serious than the one that took place in 1999. This was not just a case of hackers gaining access to the NASDAQ.com web site and leaving an annoying message - instead, this was a much more serious breach that could have potentially had very dire consequences.
According to the WSJ, investigators have been unable as of yet to identify who carried out the attacks, though preliminary evidence might point to the attacks being carried out by Russian hackers.
One thing is for sure - the NASDAQ is going to have to do a very expensive and thorough revamping of their security controls, as they are obviously not adequate enough.
Source: WSJ.com - Hackers Penetrate NASDAQ Computers
Filed under: General Knowledge