Social distancing ruins a group of hackers’ cyberattack plans, Zoom removes the code that sends data to Facebook after everyone pointed it out, and there’s no shortage of chatter about the increased strain the internet is experiencing right now.
Apparently COVID-19 is disrupting the work of hackers. A story from Business Insider about a group of hackers in China has caught fire on Reddit. Apparently, a major Chinese cyberattack on American companies was ground to a halt during China’s coronavirus lockdown because the state-sponsored hackers couldn’t work from home. The APT41 group of Chinese hackers, also known as Double Dragon, reportedly logged into a server connected to American companies and set up a “backdoor” potentially leading to what experts describe as the broadest corporate hacking attempts in years. Then something weird strange occurred – nothing happened. For weeks. Cybersecurity firm FireEye that monitored APT41’s progress said the pause in activity was likely due to the COVID-19 quarantine measures in China.
Days after Motherboard reported on how Zoom shares data with Facebook even if Zoom users don’t have a Facebook account, Zoom pulled a 180. The video conferencing giant issued an update to its iOS app which stops it from sending certain pieces of data to Facebook. In a statement to Motherboard, Zoom said “Zoom takes its users’ privacy extremely seriously. We originally implemented the ‘Login with Facebook’ feature using the Facebook SDK in order to provide our users with another convenient way to access our platform. However, we were recently made aware that the Facebook SDK was collecting unnecessary device data.”
And lastly, LinkedIn is buzzing about the added strain the internet is suddenly experiencing. Video-conferencing tools, office messaging apps and enterprise software are booming in popularity as businesses implement strict working-from-home policies due to the coronavirus. Connectivity software from Zoom, Slack, Microsoft Teams and Google Cloud’s G Suite has shown some of their largest increases in users ever in recent weeks. Meanwhile, internet service providers like TekSavvy are being forced to increase their subscription fees just to keep up.