Yahoo! News - Chris Smith, BGR, 12/30/13
New light has been shed on the extensive scope of the National Security Agency’s spying operations yet again in a couple of reports from German publication Der Spiegel, which reveal various new “features” of the covert intelligence operations conducted by the NSA’s “geek” armies. The agency will apparently pull out all the stops in order to get to the information it seeks, even if that means intercepting shipping of computers purchased online by targets in order to infect them with spyware, or replace components with its own malware-installed hardware.
In addition to sophisticated attacks that target the digital aspects of modern life, the NSA sometimes still has to use “old-school” methods. When it comes to intercepting deliveries – a tactic that’s called “interdiction” – the NSA diverts the shipping delivery to its workshops where “agents carefully open the package in order to load the malware onto the electronics, or even install hardware components that can provide backdoor access for the intelligence agencies,” Der Spiegel writes. All subsequent steps can then be conducted from the comfort of a remote computer.