'Cyber attack on hedge fund' turns out to be internal 'scenario' used by BAE Systems

Posted by   Virus Bulletin on   Jul 3, 2014

Story that appeared to be taken from fiction turns out... to have been fiction.

Two weeks after BAE Systems reported its technicians had thwarted an attack against hedge fund servers, the company has fessed up to the fact that this was not a real event, merely a 'scenario' used by experts within the company.

The original story reported that the attack, which was described by BAE Systems' Paul Henninger as "one of the most complex [he'd] seen", used malware to send information on the trades to offsite computers. This would indeed be seriously damaging, given the importance of high-frequency trading for hedge funds.

If you think this sounds familiar, perhaps you've read Rogue Code, Mark Russinovich's latest 'techno-thriller' (or perhaps have read Paul Baccas's review of the book for Virus Bulletin). Indeed, Mark himself saw many similarities between the story and his book:

It is unclear whether the story presented by BAE Systems was indeed inspired by Russinovich's novel. In any case, it provides a good lesson for those working in cybersecurity: thinking of future attack scenarios is a very good idea - but make sure you don't confuse fact and fiction!

Posted on 03 July 2014 by Martijn Grooten

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