Saturday, October 16, 2021

Italian police arrest suspects in Leonardo Army, defense data theft

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A former worker and collaborator are accused of siphoning off sensitive data for nearly two decades.

Italian authorities have detained a former worker of Leonardo SpA and the other person for the theft of sensitive military and corporate info.

Last week, Italian law officials said that the set — among which was an IT director for Leonardo — were detained for allegedly undermining the company’s network by implementing malware capable to gently exfiltrate sensitive information.

The malware, called a Trojan version, was packed through USB sticks plugged in the workstations and stayed undetected from approximately May 2015 to January 2017.

In 2017, Leonardo’s cybersecurity team discovered anomalous network traffic coming from such workstations that were led to some command-and-control (C2) host, fujinama.altervista.org. The internet domain has been captured by Italian authorities.

Italian police arrest suspects in Leonardo Army, defense data theft
Image:fujinama.altervista.org

The malware managed to quietly exfiltrate categorized and precious company information, such as military info, and preserved persistence by automatically executing each workstation.

Initially, the defense contractor thought the information exfiltration was a small and somewhat insignificant episode, however, Italian law enforcement states a subsequent investigation showed a”more extensive and severe situation.”

Reconstructions of this episode conducted by law enforcement imply that around 10GB of information — or 100,000 documents — have been stolen during the effort concerning security and protection plan, HR, merchandise supply, and element design for military and civil aircraft, in addition to employee credentials.

Italian prosecutors have accused the set of”violent accessibility to computer systems, unlawful interception of digital communications, and [the] illegal processing of personal information “

The mind of Leonardo’s cybersecurity group has also been put under house arrest for allegedly deceptive and penalizing investigative efforts regarding the cyberattack.

In a statement, Leonardo explained that the arrests link to a person who isn’t an employee of the business, in addition to a”non-executive” former member of staff.

“The organization, which is the injured party in this event, has supplied maximum collaboration since the start and will continue to do so to allow the researchers to explain the episode, and also for its defense,” Leonardo added.

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Priyanshu Vijayvargiya
Founder and Editor-in-Chief of 'Virtualattacks Inc' Priyanshu Vijayvargiya is a cybersecurity analyst, Information Security professional, developer, and a white hat hacker.

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