WikiLeaks releases CIA project Athena

After the release of 'AfterMidnight', WikiLeaks published documents of 'Athena', a project of CIA, on 19 May on their official website.

This time, the group has published documents based on CIA's Athena tool in their Vault 7 leaks that already holds eight CIA tools and secrets in the archive. Followed by Dark Matter document leak on 23 March of this year, the group has leaked Marble Framework (31 March), Grasshopper (7 April), Hive (14 April), Weeping Angel (21 April), Scribbles (28 April), Archimedes (5 May), AfterMidnight (12 May) and now Athena is in ninth place.

According to WikiLeaks, the implant works similar to Hera system, which provides remote beacon and loader capabilities on targeted computers.  Starting from Microsoft XP to the company's latest OS Windows 10,  the versions are all vulnerable to this implant. And the group claims that, the newly leaked tool, Athena, is developed by CIA and Siege Technologies - a private cyber security firm.

After the havoc last week, leaks made Assange's team find another devastation in the weeks. Unlike WannaCry, the tool can be used to target the entire OS of Microsoft. Because, recent reports of Kaspersky Lab and other cyber security researchers proves that Windows 7 is more vulnerable than other operating systems; the good news is that Windows 10 is safer than other versions of Microsoft.

There are chances that the security implant may bring privacy threat to online users across the world. Because, this tool has the capability to copy, delete files on the victim's system.

"As soon as it is installed, the malicious tool simulates beckoning capability (including configuration and task handling), the memory loading / unloading of malicious payloads for specific tasks and the delivery and retrieval of files to / from a specified directory on the target system. It allows the operator to configure settings during runtime (while the implant is on target) to customize it to an operation," as mentioned in the post.

Also, in an e-mail from HackingTeam, published by WikiLeaks, three years before, Jason Syversen, founder of Siege Technologies, with a background in cryptography and hacking, said he set out to create the equivalent of the military’s so-called probability of kill metric, a statistical analysis of whether an attack is likely to succeed.

"I feel more comfortable working on electronic warfare," he said. "It’s a little different than bombs and nuclear weapons -- that’s a morally complex field to be in. Now instead of bombing things and having collateral damage, you can really reduce civilian casualties, which is a win for everybody."

As of now, the list holds nine hacking tools, but the assumptions are that, the whistleblower group will release more hacking tools.


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