NSA Surveillance Infected 50,000 PCs With Malware

Mathew J. Schwartz

The National Security Agency (NSA) has hacked into more than 50,000 PCs to install malware that monitors US government targets.

So said a report, published Saturday by Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad, that included a top secret NSA presentation that dates from 2012. The newspaper said the document was furnished by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

The leaked presentation, which is labeled as restricted for dissemination to the United States, Australia, Canada, Great Britain, and New Zealand – the countries that comprise the “five eyes” surveillance network – highlights the NSA’s “classes of access,” which include third-party agreements or liaisons with 30 countries and 20 high-speed optical cable access programs, and the ability to eavesdrop on 12 foreign and 40 regional satellites.

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