Authorities Alert to Persistent Cyber-Attacks Targeting Think Tanks

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and FBI reported that there were persistent continued cyber intrusions by advanced persistent threat (APT) actors targeting US think tanks.

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and FBI reported that there were persistent continued cyber intrusions by advanced persistent threat (APT) actors targeting US think tanks.

According to their Alert (AA20-336A), APT actors used spearphishing emails and third-party message services directed at both corporate and personal accounts to compromise their targets. 

The attackers reportedly may utilize virtual private networks (VPNs) and other remote work tools to gain initial access or persistence on a victim’s network. 

“Given the importance that think tanks can have in shaping U.S. policy, CISA and FBI urge individuals and organizations in the international affairs and national security sectors to immediately adopt a heightened state of awareness and implement the critical steps listed in the Mitigations section of this Advisory,” said CISA  bulletin.

APT actors have usually attacked think tanks that employ advisers who consult with presidential candidates, to look into what policies a new administration could implement. 

To prevent such breaches from happening, CISA and FBI urged individuals and organizations in the international affairs and national security sectors to be more cautious and implement the critical steps listed in the Mitigations section of their Advisory.

According to recent findings from Google and Microsoft, suspected Iranian and Chinese hackers have already targeted senior policy experts in recent months including organizations and individuals who are part of President-Elect Joe Biden’s campaign.


© Fourth Estate® — All Rights Reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.