Symantec Security Breached

symantecThe hacker group Anonymous claimed last Monday that they had acquired and shared source code for Symantec’s PCAnywhere and Norton Antivirus. If confirmed, this would represent a major breach in the company’s security.

It appears that in mid-January a Symantec employee offered a hacker who used the name Yamatough $50,000 in exchange for reassurances that the software code had been destroyed. In an interview with Reuters, Yamatough said “We tricked them into offering us a bribe so we could humiliate them.”

In a strange turn, it appears the employee who was offering the money was actually a decoy set up by a law enforcement agency in an attempt to catch the hacker in an extortion plot.

The company is apparently looking into the alleged breach and is refusing to comment, as an investigation is currently under way.

In the final message of the email correspondence back and forth between Yamatough and the Symantec employee, the hacker announced that the deal was off and the code would be released on Feb. 7.

This will be a huge setback for Symantec. As of 2007, Norton Antivirus held a 61 percent share of the market for antivirus software.

This comes on the heels of Anonymous’ attack on the United States Dept. of Justice web site at the end of January. That attack was in response to the proposed SOPA and PIPA legislation that was being considered in the House. The group has also made a name for itself by crashing web sites from credit card companies who supported the indictment of Wikileaks brain trust Julian Assange.

Logan, a self-professed technophile, specializes in PC news, social media strategies and the best ways to use an HP coupon code.

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