A group of hackers known as the Shadow Brokers have released documents and files believed to provide a blueprint for how the United States National Security Agency exploited weaknesses in commercially available software to gain access to global systems of interbank transfers.
This had only been the latest of several disclosures by the group in recent months.
Although the authenticity of the documents are yet to be officially verified, the comments of Matt Suiche, founder of cybersecurity firm Comae Technologies does give some credence to it, Mr. Suiche suggests that the NSA took advantage of the vulnerability of the windows servers of some Swift affiliates in 2013. Hackers use them to insert back doors for continued access, eavesdropping or to insert other tools.
“As soon as they bypass the firewalls, they target the machines using Microsoft exploits, we now have all of the tools the NSA used to compromise SWIFT (via) Cisco firewalls, Windows,” Suiche said.
The NSA could not be reached for comments, but Cisco systems Inc. had earlier admitted that its firewalls were susceptible to attacks and Microsoft also acknowledged the vulnerabilities.