MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Kaspersky IT security company has announced that access to information on the home computer of the employee of the US National Security Agency (NSA) could have been obtained by an unknown number of hackers.
According to the Kaspersky Lab probe that is linked to media reports about the company’s software allegedly having been used to search and download classified information from the home computer of a NSA employee, the user’s computer was infected with Mokes backdoor, a malware that allows the hackers to obtain access to a device.
“The malware… was a full blown backdoor which may have allowed third parties access to the user’s machine,” the Kaspersky Lab has stated.
However, it is possible that Mokes was not the only malware that infected the computer in question, the company said, adding that while Kaspersky software on the computer was enabled, it reported 121 alarms on different types of malware.
“The interesting thing about this malware is that it was available for purchase on Russian underground forums in 2011. Also noteworthy is that the command-and-control servers of this malware were registered to a (presumably) Chinese entity going by the name ‘Zhou Lou’ during the period of September to November 2014,” the statement explained.
Allegations Against Kaspersky Lab
The internal investigation by Kaspersky Lab was launched after The Wall Street Journal reported in October that a group of hackers allegedly working for the Russian officials had stolen classified data through the National Security Agency (NSA) contractor, which used antivirus software made by the Russian software producer.
Shortly later, the New York Times reported that Israeli intelligence services have hacked into the network of Kaspersky, and warned their US colleagues that the Russian government was allegedly using Kaspersky software to gain access to computers around the world, including in several US government agencies.
Both reports came a month after the US Department of Homeland Security ordered state agencies and departments to stop using Kaspersky Lab software within the next 90 days, with the company’s CEO Eugene Kaspersky refuting all the allegations spread by the media regarding the Russian cybersecurity company’s involvement in spying on US users through its products and calling such claims groundless and paranoiac.
When commenting on the situation in an interview to Die Zeit newspaper, Eugene Kaspersky has, “There is a feeling that we just had been doing our job better than others, that we had been protecting our clients better than others … Probably, someone in the United States is very unhappy about it.”
Most recently, Wikileaks has revealed that the CIA had written a code to “impersonate” Russia-based Kaspersky Lab, which had been used at least three times.
READ MORE: WikiLeaks: CIA Wrote Code to ‘Impersonate’ Russia-Based Kaspersky Lab
Kaspersky Lab is one of the largest private cybersecurity companies in the world, with its technologies protecting over 400 million users and 270,000 corporate clients.