theIntercept, This Spy agency have obtained a special warrant from the foreign office to use the "Reverse Engineering" technique to spy which is illegal. For this Purpose, they are using the Antivirus software, Hosting Platforms and Bulletin Board software. In their warrant renewal application for Reverse engineering, they said about reverse engineering,
Critical Flaws in the Antivirus software always helps the Security Agencies to spy over the people. ESET antivirus companies had many flaws in their Products which are patched now, May be. These flaws were more useful for the spying groups rather than the hackers or the bad guys. Recently a Vulnerability in the ESET Antivirus attracted the U.K and U.S spy groups to use the technique of Reverse Engineering and Bypass their detection. This vulnerability was found by Google security engineer Tavis Ormandy.
is essential in order to be able to exploit such software and prevent detection of our activities,
"Because it's so easy for attackers to trigger emulation of untrusted code, it's critically important that the emulator is robust and isolated," Ormandy said in a blog post.
The vulnerability that he found was very dangerous it helped to run arbitrary commands with highest privilege like opening a website in browsing and downloading the email in local email client etc. The vulnerability affects ESET Smart Security for Windows, ESET NOD32 Antivirus for Windows, ESET Cyber Security Pro for OS X, ESET NOD32 For Linux Desktop, ESET Endpoint Security for Windows and OS X and ESET NOD32 Business Edition.
This is not the first time when the Security researchers found vulnerability in Antivirus Products. Some of the recent stories are,
- Tavis Ormandy discovered critical vulnerabilities in the antivirus product developed by U.K.-based security firm Sophos - PCWorld
- A vulnerability allows attackers to disable Microsoft’s antimalware products by sending specifically crafted files to users via websites, email, or instant messaging applications. - PCWorld
- Joxean Koret, a researcher at Singapore security firm COSEINC, antivirus programs are as vulnerable to attacks as the applications they're trying to protect and expose a large attack surface that can make computers even more vulnerable. ComputerWorld
If the Security software are also effected then how to protect ourselves against potential threats?? We still rely on Antiviruses for our security. But keep following pre-installation and post-installation things about Antiviruses
- Check the Reviews of Security Researchers about that Antivirus Software.
- Check the list of security features included in that package.
- Check the Involvement of company in any spying activity of the govt ( Kaspersky is accused for working with Russian Spying groups)
- Check their trac for bugs they had in past.
- How frequently they update their software.
- Don't go for Crack, Even Free version is better than the cracked.
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