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HomePoliticsIndiaFacebook: Pakistan hackers targeted Afghan users amid Taliban takeover

Facebook: Pakistan hackers targeted Afghan users amid Taliban takeover

Facebook said the group, known in the security industry as SideCopy, shared links to websites hosting malware which could surveil people's devices

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Hackers from Pakistan used Facebook to target people in Afghanistan with connections to the previous government during the Taliban’s takeover of the country, the company’s threat investigators said in an interview.

Facebook said the group, known in the security industry as SideCopy, shared links to websites hosting malware that could surveil people’s devices. Targets included people connected to the government, military and law enforcement in Kabul, it said. Facebook said it removed SideCopy from its platform in August.

The social media company, which recently changed its name to Meta, said the group created fictitious personas of young women as “romantic lures” to build trust and trick targets into clicking phishing links or downloading malicious chat apps. It compromised legitimate websites to manipulate people into giving up their Facebook credentials.

“It’s always difficult for us to speculate as to the end goal of the threat actor,” Facebook’s head of cyber espionage investigations, Mike Dvilyanski, said. “We don’t know exactly who was compromised or what the end result of that was.”

Major online platforms and email providers like Facebook, Twitter Inc, Alphabet Inc’s Google and Microsoft Corp’s LinkedIn have said they took steps to lock down Afghan users’ accounts during the Taliban’s swift takeover of the country this past summer.

Facebook said it had not previously disclosed the hacking campaign, which it said ramped up between April and August, due to safety concerns about its in the country and the need for more work to investigate the network. It said it shared information with the US State Department at the time it took down the operation.

Investigators said Facebook had last month disabled the accounts of two hacking groups which it linked to Syria’s Air Force Intelligence.

Facebook said one group, known as the Syrian Electronic Army, targeted human rights activists, journalists and others opposing the ruling regime, while the other targeted people linked to the Free Syrian Army and former military personnel who had joined opposition forces.

Facebook’s head of global threat disruption, David Agranovich, said the Syria and Afghanistan cases showed cyber espionage groups leveraging periods of uncertainty during conflicts when people might be more susceptible to manipulation.

The company said a third hacking network in Syria, which it linked to the Syrian government and removed in October, targeted minority groups, activists and members of the People’s Protection Units (YPG) and Syria Civil Defense, or White Helmets.

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OMICRON CONCERNS
Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan has emphasised in the Centre's COVID review meet with the states, that Omicron does not escape RT-PCR or rapid antigen testing. States have been asked to ramp up testing, screening & home isolation. Times Network’s Sherine reports!

#COVID19 | Today’s Vaccination Update - The latest #CovidVaccination equation for Tuesday, November 30.

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कहीं सुना था कि दुनिया का सबसे छोटा संविधान अमेरिका का है - महज 13 पन्नों का!

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वास्तव में दुनिया का सबसे छोटा संविधान हमारे योगी बाबा का है -

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Reutershttps://www.sirfnews.com/
Reuters is an international news organization owned by Thomson Reuters. It employs some 2,500 journalists and 600 photojournalists in about 200 locations worldwide. The agency was established in London in 1851 by the German-born Paul Reuter. It was acquired by the Thomson Corporation in 2008 and now makes up the media division of Thomson Reuters.

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