NIA initiates probe into malware attack on e-devices of defence personnel

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NIA initiates probe into malware attack on e-devices of defence personnel

  • The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has launched a probe into the use of a fake Facebook profile through which several defence personnel were contacted and their communication devices accessed using malware for security sensitive information.
  • The agency suspects that the account was being operated from Pakistan.

About the recent attack

  • As alleged, information related to national security was stolen by remotely injecting a concealed malware into the electronic devices, including mobile phones and computers, of the defence personnel and some others working in defence establishments through the Facebook account
  • The targeted individuals’ gadgets were infected using the malware to “gain unauthorised access to the restricted data of the computer resources and to steal sensitive information with an intention to commit terrorist act and endanger the unity, integrity and sovereignty of India

Malware attacks

  • It is an intrusive software that is designed to damage and destroy computers and computer systems.
  • It is a contraction for “malicious software.”

Types of Malware

  • Virus: It is a malicious software that is attached to a document or file and uses macros to run its code and spread from one host to another.
    • It will remain dormant once downloaded until the file is opened and used.
  • Worms: These are harmful programmes that duplicate quickly and spread to every device on a network.
    • Worms, unlike viruses, do not require host programmes to spread.
    • Before multiplying and dispersing at an exponential pace, a worm infects a system via a downloaded file or a network connection.
  • Trojan viruses: These are viruses that are camouflaged as useful software.
    • However, once the Trojan virus is downloaded, it can obtain access to sensitive data and modify, block, or erase it.
    • Trojan viruses, unlike other viruses and worms, are not designed to multiply themselves.
  • Spyware: it is a malicious software that hides on a computer and sends information to a remote user.
    • It targets sensitive data and can provide predators remote access.
    • It is frequently used to steal personal or financial information.
  • Adware: It is a malicious software that collects information about your computer activities in order to serve you with relevant advertising.
    • Adware can lead you to potentially dangerous websites and even contain Trojan horses and spyware.
  • Ransomware: it is a type of malicious software that acquires access to sensitive data on a computer, encrypts it so that the user cannot access it, and then demands a monetary payment in exchange for the data's release.

Exam Track

Prelims Takeaway

  • Malware attacks
  • Type of Malware attacks
  • NIA