Diplomatic cables from the European Union were successfully intercepted (and presumably read) by “hackers,” as they’re being characterized. Area 1 is credited with discovering the intrusion. There’s not official attribution, yet, but experts say the techniques employed were characteristic of those used by Chinese services. This is of course circumstantial evidence, but many are persuaded (BBC).
To further complicate attribution, Recorded Future notes a trend in state intelligence operations: dumbing down your craft to make a hack look like the work of criminals or hacktivists (Daily Swig). This happens linguistically as well—it’s worth noting that the Internet Research Agency’s performance on Instagram and Twitter show that, had it chosen to use them, Moscow had an American English fluency available that never appeared (except perhaps by inversion) in ShadowBrokerese.
The New York Times reported yesterday that Facebook gave various Big-Tech partners, including Apple and Amazon, extensive access to user data. Facebook replies that the partnerships were benign, that user data weren’t handed over without user consent, and that in any case the more aggressive forms of sharing stopped as Facebook tightened its privacy policies over the past year. But eroding trust in the company seems to have made it impossible for Facebook to avoid another black eye. It’s running out of eyes: Facebook’s British nemesis, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, has starchily requested an explanation (TechCrunch).
In the US, NASA reports a server breach with possible personal data compromise.
Huawei- and ZTE-skepticism surfaces in India (Business Today).