Without even a week to recover from the news that the US had been hacking German and Russian embassies, it turns out the EU Parliament has come under attack from an as of yet unnamed group of international penetration testers.
The Strasbourg-based collection of government officials has been threat recently, as staff emails and smartphones were compromised in a series of “man-in-the-middle” cracks intended to gather information on the foreign dignitaries and their day-to-day movements. Luckily it was only the public wifi that was corrupted, usually open to those passing through the area or working from one of several cafes and lunch spots circling the building.
The shutdown will last “until further notice” as IT staff will begin installing certificates on all devices that staff use to access internal IT systems, including email.
However, the usernames and passwords of at least 14 members of European Parliament staff are thought to have been stolen, according to another post by Dimitrios Symeonidis, who works on the technical helpdesk at the European Parliament.
In a public post, Demitrios said his “best guess” was that hackers set up shop nearby to impersonate the network, called “EP-EXT,” and “steal our credentials from the login page.”
“After I type in my credentials, the rogue Wi-Fi is turned off for a minute or more, so my phone re-connects to the real EP-EXT network and I am asked for my credentials again. I would probably think that I mistyped the password or something and not think twice about it. After a minute the rogue Wi-Fi goes back online, waiting for the next victim.”
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