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Shadow Brokers teases more Windows exploits and cyberespionage data

21 May 2017

In typically broken English, the group said this week (16 May): "TheShadowBrokers is launching new monthly subscription model".

"Shadow Brokers is feeling like being very responsible party about Windows dump", it claimed.

It claimed to have exploits for web browsers, routers, operating systems (including Windows 10), compromised data from banks and Swift providers and stolen network data from Russian, Chinese, Iranian, and North Korean nuclear missile programs. "What members doing with data after is up to members".

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The Shadow Brokers eventually called it quits in January and disabled its online accounts, only to return in April in a surprise move that involved publishing the password for an encrypted archive containing many Linux and Windows exploits, as well as malware implants supposedly used by the Equation.

According to Reuters, Shadow Brokers promised in a blog on Tuesday to release from June tools every month to anyone willing to pay for access to some of the tech world's biggest commercial secrets starting next month. The leaks, and the global WannaCry ransomware attack that they led to, have renewed debate over how and when intelligence agencies should disclose vulnerabilities used in cyber spying programs so that businesses and consumers can better defend themselves. It is not known who is behind the Shadow Brokers.Derek Manky, global security strategist at cyber security firm Fortinet, said he thinks WannaCry is probably the worst that will come from the Shadow Brokers' publicly dumped toolkit, though the group may have held back from public revealing everything it obtained "Out of that batch, it is probably a high-water mark", Manky said.

The WannaCry attack stoked fears that the spy agency's powerful cyber weapons could now be turned to criminal use, ratcheting up cyber security threats to a new level.

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The group first appeared online in August and claimed that it had access to the arsenal of a cyberespionage group known in the security industry as the Equation, widely believed to be a hacking division of the NSA.

It is unknown whether the Shadow Brokers genuinely have further tools stolen from the NSA or whether the group will make good on its threats. However, as researcher Marcy Wheeler points out, simply threatening these leaks can strain relationships between Microsoft and the United States government, which may be the real aim. Microsoft president and chief legal officer Brad Smith said earlier this week the WannaCry attack used elements stolen from NSA cyber warfare operations. "An equivalent scenario with conventional weapons would be the USA military having some of its Tomahawk missiles stolen."Some major technology companies, including Alphabet Inc's Google (GOOGL.O) and Facebook Inc (FB.O), declined comment on the Microsoft statement".

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