Flame I'm Gonna Live Forever
Eugene Kaspersky’s security researchers at Kaspersky Lab have sleuthed out a new “cyber-espionage weapon.” The Russian supervillain’s (or awesomely cool billionaire, depending on your point of view) labs say this weapon has nearly as cool a name as previously discovered cyber worms Flame and Duqu–”Gauss.” It also has a specific and potentially telling target: Lebanese lending institutions. Bloomberg tells us more:
Yesterday, we pointed out Wired‘s extensive profile of Eugene Kaspersky, the larger-than-life CEO of Russian antivirus firm Kaspersky Labs–a.k.a., one of the world’s largest computer security firms and the folks on the front lines of the Flame and Stuxnet cyberattacks. (The firm proved they were connected.)
We found the piece’s title–”Russia’s Top Cyber Sleuth Foils US Spies, Helps Kremlin Pals”–apt, as it goes into great detail about Mr. Kaspersky’s company’s role as “unofficial geek squad” to Russia’s Federal Security Service or FSB–better known as the successor to the KGB. His background as an intelligence officer in the Soviet Army is also explored.
Well, it appears that the colorful billionaire is, shall we say, not a happy camper.
Let’s say, hypothetically, that you are the founder and CEO of a major antivirus company, and you’ve a history of close ties to Russia’s intelligence community, and you’re being profiled by a writer from Wired. What’s the shadiest thing you can imagine saying? Does it perhaps sound anything like this?
This week, in questionable partnerships: The antivirus makers at Kaspersky Labs have teamed up with The Dark Knight Rises for “The People of Gotham City Sweepstakes.” The winner gets to be Batman for a day (though without the onerous crime-fighting responsibilities), because why not?
If the name Kaspersky Labs sounds familiar, that’s probably because it’s the company that figured out the connection between the Flame and Stuxnet viruses.
The contest posits that the villainous Bane has unleashed a devastating computer virus on Gotham, and humbler Interneters like yourself must fight back, by entering this contest. We’re envisioning a frustrated Batman, suited up to bash heads but instead peering over the shoulder of a computer technician, which just sounds thrilling.
In a statement released yesterday, founder and CEO Eugene Kaspersky sounded really, really excited about this contest and about The Dark Knight Rises in general:
Flame I'm Gonna Live Forever
We already suspected this to be the case, and now the Washington Post has confirmation from unnamed officials that yes, the U.S. was behind the Flame virus infecting computers across the Middle East, as part of a campaign to slow the development of Iran’s nuclear weapons program. In other news, America’s cyber weapons program apparently has more leaks than a watering can.
The Post reports: