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Rise in State-sponsored Cyber Espionage: The Tipping Point of Cyber Warfare?


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News emerged last week that a hacking group known as The Equation Group had itself been hacked by a separate group known as the Shadow Brokers. The release by Shadow Brokers of what now seems almost certainly NSA hacking tools is significant not because it happened, but why it happened. If the hacked Equation Group is in fact connected to the US government; the Shadow Brokers group relate to the Russian government; and the hacked cyber weapons were acquired by Russia in 2013, then the most important question is not what are these cyber weapons, but why has Russia released them now?

If you follow Edward Snowden’s argument, this is a warning shot from Russia. With the tools now in public hands, any hack that can be shown to have used them can be traced directly back to the US government.

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