Targeted Threats

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Investigations into the prevalence and impact of digital espionage operations against civil society groups.

Latest Research

Group5: Syria and the Iranian Connection

This report describes a malware operation against the Syrian Opposition. We name the operator Group5, and suspect they have not been previously-reported. Group5 used “just enough” technical sophistication, combined with social engineering, to target computers and mobile phones with malware.

Packrat: Seven Years of a South American Threat Actor

This report describes an extensive malware, phishing, and disinformation campaign active in several Latin American countries, including Ecuador, Argentina, Venezuela, and Brazil. The nature and geographic spread of the targets seems to point to a sponsor, or sponsors, with regional, political interests. The attackers, whom we have named Packrat, have shown a keen and systematic interest in the political opposition and the independent press in so-called ALBA countries (Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas), and their recently allied regimes.

Pay No Attention to the Server Behind the Proxy: Mapping FinFisher’s Continuing Proliferation

This post describes the results of Internet scanning we recently conducted to identify the users of FinFisher, a sophisticated and user-friendly spyware suite sold exclusively to governments. We devise a method for querying FinFisher’s “anonymizing proxies” to unmask the true location of the spyware’s master servers. Since the master servers are installed on the premises of FinFisher customers, tracing the servers allows us to identify which governments are likely using FinFisher. In some cases, we can trace the servers to specific entities inside a government by correlating our scan results with publicly available sources.

تماس از لندن: فیشینگ رمز عبور دو مرحله‌ای از ایران

این گزارش به کمپین رو به رشد حملات فیشینگ علیه کاربران در گستره ایران و حداقل یک حمله به یک فعال غربی می‌پردازد. این حمله‌ها تلاش دارند تا امنیت مضاعفی که از طریق رمز عبور دو مرحله‌ای در گوگل فراهم شده است را دور بزنند و به شکل گسترده‌ای مبتنی بر تماس‌های تلفنی و تلاش برای ورود در زمان حقیقی از سوی مهاجم است. جالب اینجاست که این حمله‌ها عموما با یک تماس تلفنی از کشور انگلستان شروع می‌شده و هکرها به یکی از دو زبان فارسی و یا انگلیسی ارتباط برقرار می‌کرده‌اند.