13:43 GMT +322 September 2019
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    The US National Security Agency and the UK Government Communications Headquarters have worked to undermine computer security software.

    US, UK Spy Agencies Look Into Breaching Anti-Virus Software to Track Users

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    British and US spy agencies use reverse engineered software products under questionable legal authority to infiltrate networks and track users, media reported on Monday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The US National Security Agency and the UK Government Communications Headquarters have worked to undermine computer security software, including Kaspersky Lab’s anti-virus programs, to infiltrate networks and track users.

    “The spy agencies have reverse engineered software products, sometimes under questionable legal authority, and monitored web and email traffic in order to discreetly thwart anti-virus software and obtain intelligence from companies about security software and users of such software,” a report from The Intercept read.

    The NSA and GCHQ in particular looked into breaching software produced by the Moscow-based cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab that protects more than 400 million people, according to the report.

    The Intercept argued the Russian company is “the sharpest thorn” in the side of government hackers because it has been successfully uncovering state-sponsored malware, such as the NSA’s espionage tools hidden on computer hard drives.

    Kaspersky Lab reported a virus attack on its internal corporate network on June 10. The company claimed that an Israeli intelligence service had been behind the attack. The virus targeted the firm's ongoing investigations and analytical tools to gain an understanding of its malware-detection methods, according to Kaspersky Lab.

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    Tags:
    espionage, software, security breach, Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), Kaspersky Lab, National Security Agency (NSA), Russia, United States, United Kingdom
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