A hacking group called the Shadow Brokers claims to have turned the tables on the US National Security Agency (NSA) by hacking into its servers, stealing information and auctioning it off.
Reports have it that the Shadow Brokers broke into the NSA by exploiting a team of in-house hackers at the agency called the Equation Group.
Once they solved this puzzle they were able to maraud through servers and pluck them for their goodies, and they are now trying to sell this information to the highest bidder.
The online response to the leak suggests that the package is small but powerful, and includes some of the NSA's elite hacking tools.
I just published “Shadow Brokers: NSA Exploits of the Week” https://t.co/fZs3Co5cIF— Matt Suiche (@msuiche) August 15, 2016
It is easy to see the appeal of such a haul to some parties. One post on Twitter suggested that demand has been so high that no-one has really been able to buy anything.
A Tumblr blog operated by the hacker outfit has apparently been wiped clean. "There's nothing here. Whatever you were looking for doesn't currently exist at this address. Unless you were looking for this error page, in which case: Congrats! You totally found it," says a holding page.
However, a cached version seemingly shows that the group is offering the haul on an auction basis and calling out the Equation Group, which is an outfit that Russian security company Kaspersky once went on about.
"Attention government sponsors of cyber warfare and those who profit from it. How much you pay for enemies [sic] cyber weapons? Not malware you find in networks. Both sides, RAT + LP, full state sponsor tool set? We find cyber weapons made by creators of stuxnet, duqu, flame," the Tumblr post said in broken English.
"Kaspersky calls Equation Group. We follow Equation Group traffic. We find Equation Group source range. We hack Equation Group. We find many many Equation Group cyber weapons.
"You see pictures. We give you some Equation Group files free, you see. This is good proof no? You enjoy!!! You break many things. You find many intrusions. You write many words. But not all, we are auction the best files."
The NSA press and media website is currently unavailable in what may be an unrelated issue, but the organisation has yet to comment on the incident.
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