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Russian Hackers Behind DNC Email Leak Now Target NGOs, Political Think Tanks

By Lynn Palec, | November 15, 2016

Chrysaor is said to have been designed to uninstall itself if it is spotted. (YouTube)

Chrysaor is said to have been designed to uninstall itself if it is spotted. (YouTube)

The Russian hackers, who were allegedly behind the Democratic email leaks, are now targeting some United States political think tanks and several non-government organizations (NGOs). Tech and security analysts claim that these hackers are also planning to attack the British government to influence the possible Brexit vote of the Parliament.

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Security firm Volexity believed that the group responsible for the U.S. attacks is called Cozy Bear. This is the same group that leaked massive amounts of email hacked from the Democratic National Committee. Some political analysts believe that the leaked classified emails helped catapult Republican Donald Trump into the presidency, according to The Mirror.

Volexity's investigation revealed that the team behind the attack are creating cleverly crafted messages to make their phishing scheme more attractive. The firm added that the attackers are also becoming selective with their targets, rather than just mass releasing it to potential victims.

The hackers use emails with enticing subjects such as "the truth about election rigging" or documents that will reveal "why American elections are flawed," according to Forbes. Once the victim opens the malicious attachment, it will automatically trigger a malware could that will infect the user's computer system.

Volexity said that the hacker group's phishing scheme are becoming more complicated compared to their past attack methods. The firm said that the hackers former methods were more subtle as they simply sent a casual email disguised in such a way that it appears to be sent by a colleague. Some of these malicious emails even use compromised hardvard.edu email addresses.

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