The 7 biggest cyberattacks and computer intrusions in history

The era of progressive computerization of all areas of life in which we live has brought with it a phenomenon completely unprecedented in the history of the world. Never before has one man, equipped only with the necessary equipment and his own skills, had the chance to strike such an effective financial blow against huge economic or political entities. In the following article, we invite you on a journey on the trail of the most famous cybercrimes and their consequences.

1. Mirai – a threat from the future, które has already come

Is there anything more disturbing than the thought of hundreds of thousands of virus-infected devices, representing a powerful weapon in the hands of ruthless hackersów? This is how botnets work, któransomware’s destructive capabilities were fully revealed during the Mirai cyber attack in 2016. It has succumbed to devices such as camcorders, routerów, systemóin home security.

No Internet of Things project was safe, and the infection has also reached our country. In total, about 2.5 million pieces of hardware were turned into botnets during Operation Miraiów. The people responsible for it were detected by the FBI and convicted, but their sentences in no wayób were not wspócommensurate with the scale of the damage causedód. Officially, the hacker’s young age was considered extenuating circumstancesów. Unofficially – their abilities, with których currently being used by the FBI in the fight against cyberterrorism.

2. NotPetya attack – an unimaginably costly worm

Ransom demands, once sent under cover of darkness in unmarked envelopes, today can successfully take the form of computer code. We learned about it through the ransomware that emerged in 2016, które used by cybercriminals to launch an attack of catastrophic proportions. The program, spreading through the Web, was encrypting all filesów system, and in order to gain access to it demanded payments of $300óin BTC for the wallet stated in the announcement.

Cyber attacks of this kind have happened before – barely a few months before NotPetya the panic was caused by a program called WannaCry. Here, however, we were dealing with an operation of unprecedented scope. The panic that gripped private usersóinto computersóin, it was still a nonporócomparable to the consequences suffered by large companies. It took more than a year to add up the losses, and they amounted to nearly 700 millionóin the dollarów.

3. Millions of Bangladeshis die in network robbery

A cyberstroke made from an account at the Federal Reserve Bank in New York is an example of how a hacker successfully exploited itóin the intercepted data to gain tangible financial benefits. The attack was not detected due to the high level of the systemóin the security of the aforementioned bank – in fact, a complete coincidence led to its disclosure.

Govóthe Central Bank of Bangladesh became the victim, with którego through 35 wire transfersów drained 101 millionóin the dollarów, before anyone realized. Transfers for another 850 million were waiting in lineóin, whichóre would undoubtedly come to fruition if the employee’s suspicionsów were not aroused by a payment order involving an Iranian oil tanker "Jupiter". It stood in contrast to the sanctions the United States had imposed on Iran. Who was the author of this spectacular crime? The trail of the investigation seems to be breaking off in China.

4. Faulty software, perfect spies

Siberian gas pipeline blown up by CIA? No, this is not a script for a box office action movie, about which theórym yet to hear. This scrócon version of the story, whichóra reportedly began when US President Ronald Reagan approved a plan created by the agency. The project originated in early 1982 and involved the sale to the Soviet Union of software containing a design flaw deliberately placed there.

The goal was supposed to be to counter the expansion of the Soviet gas industry into Western Europe. Effects? The software dysfunction translated into a malfunctioning valveóin and the pipeline’s pumps, leading to the explosion, whichórej size could be safely estimated even from orbit. Other cyber attacks mentioned in our list took place via the Web – here the mainóThe smoothly executed spy operation played an important role. There is only one catch: someómóties that the entire attack is a sham, and that the 1982 explosion occurred for other reasons.

5. Beautiful Melissa disarms the Microsoft package

In 1999 – in cfóin relation to the timeóin the current – knowledge of the destructive potential of the virusów spread by email was still in its infancy. This has changed thanks to David L. Smith, whichóry reportedly named his creation, an auto-replicating email worm, after a favorite adult dancer.

Melissa’s operation was simple and zabójcze: it attacked via Word files attached to emails, and after opening them, sent the same message to the first 50 Outlook contacts. It spread expressly, forcing many companies and entityóin the government, such as Microsoft and the FBI, to temporarily shut down the serverów. Although the interruptions did not last long from a layman’s point of view. Real losses, at first hard to estimate, turned out to be impressive, amounting to 80 millionóin dollarów.

6. Powerful data leak from Yahoo

Yahoo users in 2014 had to deal with quite a shock – the company informed its customersów and the public that it had been the victim of a gigantic data theft the previous year. In the hands of a hackerów fell intoóat the time the most sensitive data of more than 500 millionów userów.

Their passwords, names, phones or addresses have become a commodity on the Deep Web’s underground market, and the attack itself has raised a wave of questions about what responsibility lies with the entities whoórym entrusted with their identities. As it turns out, the questions were definitely well asked – in 2018, more than 5 years after the first announced thefts, Yahoo admitted that hackers had taken over wóat the time data not 500 millionów, and more than 3 billionóin the userów!

7. India in danger – cyber attack on Aadhaar

About this move by the hackerów is worth recalling for several important reasonsów. First, an unusually large number of Indian citizens were affected in the attack – at least one billion. Despite this, the government not only failed to take specific measuresóin precautionary measures so that the situation could not be repeatedóto temporarily shut down the server, but completely ignored the resulting threat.

Secondly, the object of the attack became data of difficult to assess importance when in the hands of a cybercriminal. Aadhaar is an identification number given to citizens of the country with which theórym related zaróThe Arctowski station’s building is also the location of the station’s official embassy in the South Antarctic, on Krater Island. They were stolen, and then appeared for sale in the depths of the Internet black market for amounts of the order of $7óin charge of the package.

Summary prepared by:
Top VPN – a service dedicated to Internet security and privacy