The Washington Post

Hackers take a swipe at intelligence alliance

Hackers, it seems, are out to pester the spies and ex-spies.

Over the past few months, the CIA, the Mossad and even some corporate types, including those at Booz Allen Hamilton, all have been targeted online. In some cases, hackers have stolen proprietary information; in others, intruders have crashed servers through “denial of service” attacks.

The latest victim is the Intelligence and National Security Alliance, a group of several hundred former intelligence, military and government officials that just happened to have released a paper this week calling for a government strategy to prevent cyber attacks through better information sharing.

The group, whose current chairwoman, Frances Fragos Townsend, was the Bush administration’s top homeland security adviser, said Friday that the hackers got off with the names, e-mail addresses and phone numbers of its members. Among the group’s board members are Charlie Allen, a former CIA assistant director, and Steve Cambone, the first undersecretary of defense for intelligence.

There’s been no claim of responsibility, unlike in some other recent cyber attacks.

A spokeswoman for INSA said the group didn’t think the timing of the attack was a coincidence.

“Our interpretation of this is someone thought this would be cute,” said Karen Nussle.

Ellen Nakashima is a national security reporter for The Washington Post. She focuses on issues relating to intelligence, technology and civil liberties.



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