Russian Snake Virus: 8 Years of Data Theft by Uroboros

It has been discovered that the Russian Snake Virus, Uroboros has been stealing data for 8 years. This virus will be present on many systems, and will continue to steal data as it is incredibly difficult to identify.

The virus was not created to steal data from people. The creators had other more ambitious aims. The International Business Times reported that the virus was developed to steal government secrets and strike at telecoms systems.

The precise targets have not all been revealed by the experts who discovered the virus, but another link to Russia comes from the fact that Ukraine was targeted in campaigns 14 times by Uroboros. It seems that the Department of Defense of the United States was also targeted by the Russian Snake Virus in 2010.

The virus is currently being reviewed by UK firm BAE and German firm Gdata. As for the level of sophistication, it is reportedly the same as to Stuxnet. For anyone not familiar with Stuxnet, it was created and used by the U.S. and Israel to destroy Iranian nuclear reactors. It resulted in them spinning out of control until they were destroyed.

Uroboros is a rootkit and masks inside kernel-level processes. Because of this it has remained unnoticed. Anti-Virus engines do not look there, allowing it to remain undetected for such a long period of time.

The review of Uroboros by BAE is secret and, while more is now known, since the virus makes up an element of an ongoing operation few details have been made public. The virus is still on the move and may be attacking or monitoring foreign government systems ath present. What is known is Uroboros targets a vulnerability in Windows along with software running on the Windows platform. The virus has been able to continue working despite new security features being worked into the operating system.


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Elizabeth Hernandez

Elizabeth Hernandez is a news writer on Defensorum. Elizabeth is an experienced journalist who has worked on many publications for several years. Elizabeth writers about compliance and the related areas of IT security breaches. Elizabeth's has focus on data privacy and secure handling of personal information. Elizabeth has a postgraduate degree in journalism. Elizabeth Hernandez is the editor of HIPAAZone.