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Thread: NSA announces decision to switch to Norton Antivirus

  1. #1
    SEÑOR Member Aimless's Avatar
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    Default NSA announces decision to switch to Norton Antivirus

    Seeing the Kaspersky scandal unfold over the past few months has been pretty scary. I've been meaning to post about it in the Vulnerabilities thread but I think it merits its own thread given the scale and the potential consequences:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/10/t...a-hacking.html
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    That's no moon. EyeKhan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aimless View Post
    Seeing the Kaspersky scandal unfold over the past few months has been pretty scary. I've been meaning to post about it in the Vulnerabilities thread but I think it merits its own thread given the scale and the potential consequences:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/10/t...a-hacking.html
    I honestly cannot believe anyone in our government ever thought it would be a good idea to use such critical software from a company based in Moscow, run by a former Russian intelligence officer. What. The. Fuck. were they thinking???? I hear Kaspersky adds on NPR all the time and from the day I found out where the company was located, every time I think "yeah, right." To be honest, I was thinking the software would have back doors to be exploited by Russian military hackers if a cyber war erupted. I didn't even consider virus scanning software's utility as an espionage tool...
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    Local talking head LittleFuzzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EyeKhan View Post
    I honestly cannot believe anyone in our government ever thought it would be a good idea to use such critical software from a company based in Moscow, run by a former Russian intelligence officer. What. The. Fuck. were they thinking????
    Probably that it has consistently been the winning or ranking AV suite for some time.
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    That's no moon. EyeKhan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleFuzzy View Post
    Probably that it has consistently been the winning or ranking AV suite for some time.
    So. What. That's not ever remotely been the key factor here.
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    Senior Member GGT's Avatar
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    This is obviously Fake News, because it comes from the NYT.

  6. #6
    Its important to note that the files found were not taken from NSA systems by the anti-virus program. They were mishandled and loaded onto a 3rd party laptop, which had Kaspersky on it. And virus scanners doing what virus scanners do, it took a file of unknown intent and sent to home base to be deconstructed. There is no evidence that Kaspersky simply handed the files over to the motherland. Instead it looks like they themselves had rather shit security considering they are one of the biggest and most important targets in the world to attack. Infiltrated by at least Israel and Russia.

    There are several different ways sensitive systems can use anti-virus without giving up their secrets. From only using code thats been inspected and approved to denying any outbound traffic. Doesn't matter who the NSA goes with, its procedure that would be followed regardless.
    Last edited by Ominous Gamer; 10-13-2017 at 03:09 AM.
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    You would think for secret stuff the government would actually develop something themselves.

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    Local talking head LittleFuzzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EyeKhan View Post
    So. What. That's not ever remotely been the key factor here.
    But it is a very credible and normal reason to use someone's product, which is the question you asked.
    Last night as I lay in bed, looking up at the stars, I thought, “Where the hell is my ceiling?"

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    That's no moon. EyeKhan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleFuzzy View Post
    But it is a very credible and normal reason to use someone's product, which is the question you asked.
    From what I've read, some government agencies were using Kaspersky products. Given where the company is located and the work history of the company's founder, I believe that should have been regarded as an unacceptable risk.

    @ OG: I'm suspicious that the Russians hacking into Kaspersky and secretly using the antivirus software to search US computers is a ruse to give the company plausible deniability. Yes, maybe it's paranoid conspiracy theory, but it looks very fishy and I think anyone with any intellectual property worth stealing would be crazy to use that software.
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    Local talking head LittleFuzzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EyeKhan View Post
    From what I've read, some government agencies were using Kaspersky products. Given where the company is located and the work history of the company's founder,
    You think orgs like State should research the backgrounds for the founders of any company one of its offices decides to use as a vendor?
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  11. #11
    Senior Member RandBlade's Avatar
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    Where the product concerns critical data security? Yes.

    There's not that many data security applications being used surely, a background check on the products authorised to access data should be every bit as comprehensive as the background checks on the people authorised to access data.

    The offices should use authorised software only. It breaches data security to allow unauthorised and unapproved software to be installed at will on critical systems.
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  12. #12
    That's no moon. EyeKhan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleFuzzy View Post
    You think orgs like State should research the backgrounds for the founders of any company one of its offices decides to use as a vendor?
    Of course the answer to any non-nonsensical absolute statement like that is no. But in this case, the software is critical to computer system security, the company is obviously Russian, and the background of its founder and leader as a "former" Russian intelligence officer is no secret. The software should never have been used.
    The Rules
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