China-Based Hackers Caught Using Facebook For Targeted Spying on Uighurs

NBC Information reviews:

Fb stated Wednesday that hackers based in China used the social media platform as part of a campaign to hack and spy on diasporas of Uyghurs, the minority group the nation has been accused of placing in “re-education” camps. The hackers used Fb to determine, observe and ship malicious hyperlinks to Uyghur activists, dissidents and journalists residing within the U.S., Australia, Canada and Turkey, amongst different international locations, Fb stated.

Fb stopped in need of straight blaming the Chinese language authorities for sponsoring the marketing campaign. “We are able to see geographic attribution based mostly on the exercise, however we won’t really show who’s behind the operation,” the corporate’s head of cybersecurity coverage, Nathaniel Gleicher, stated in a telephone name with journalists. However Fb did say the hackers are a part of the identical operation that the cybersecurity firm Volexity cited in 2019 as being affiliated with the Chinese language authorities. It published research that exposed that the nation’s hackers had gone to excessive measures to hack and spy on Uyghurs. They used subtle, beforehand unknown instruments to load malicious code into a number of Uyghur information websites in order that they’d hack and spy on practically any smartphone that visited.

“Who else would have the assets, the effort and time to go after these folks? If you happen to advised me it was Iceland I would be fairly shocked,” Volexity CEO Steven Adair stated in a telephone name Wednesday…

Fb’s head of cyberespionage, Mike Dvilyanski, stated on the decision that whereas it had discovered and eliminated fewer than 500 accounts that despatched malicious hyperlinks to Uyghurs, it was “a particularly focused operation… We had been seeing them create personas on Fb which are designed to appear to be journalists that target points important to the Uyghur neighborhood, which are designed to appear to be activists that is perhaps standing up for the Uyghur neighborhood, designed to appear to be members of the neighborhood,” Dvilyanski stated. “Then use that as a solution to trick them into clicking into these hyperlinks to reveal their units.”
The article additionally cites “multiple investigative reports” displaying China “maintains re-education camps that detain an estimated 1 million Uyghurs

“With omnipresent cameras, face recognition know-how and intense assortment of residents’ knowledge, it is one of many most heavily surveilled areas in the world.”

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