Syria

Syria Targets Activists With Malware

Lures them in with a fake anti-hacking tool

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As the violence escalates across Syria, so do the campaigns of targeted malware attacks against Syrian activists, journalists, and members of the opposition, which covertly install surveillance software on their computers. Syrians are growing more aware of the danger these campaigns pose to their security and the security of their friends and loved ones. On Facebook, the Union of Free Students in Syria group has started an album of students holding up signs warning against phishing attacks and malware, with messages that such as, "Assad supporters are sending dangerous files with hacked accounts. Check with your friends before opening an attachment."

The latest malware campaign plays into users' concerns about protecting their security by offering a fake security tool called AntiHacker, which promises to provide "Auto-Protect & Auto-Detect & Security & Quick scan and analysing."[sic] EFF's analysis indicates that this campaign is the work of the same actors behind several malware campaigns that lured their targets in using fake revolutionary documents and a fake Skype encryption tool–campaigns that date back to at least November 2011.