The media has been abuzz for these past few months with news of various hacking attempts. And no wonder, since we’re living in the age of information. Even though all hacking attempts are bad, as they are aimed at stealing your information, those backed by the state are even worse. So, following Google’s and Facebook’s suit, Yahoo is to warn users about state sponsored hacking attempts.
Google and Facebook – the first ones in on the action
Google started the movement way back in 2012, when they sent an e-mail to their users in which they promised that they would be informed in case they were the victims of a state sponsored cyber attack.
No explanation was given as to the reason behind the move, but speculators have come up with a number of theories.
Regardless, the company kept its promise, and that was the end of that. Until about two months ago.
In October, Facebook also promised that they would inform their users in case they were targeted by a hacking attempt prompted by the state.
They didn’t offer any explanation to what prompted their decision, but they did offer a number of reasons as to why Facebook hacks are potentially very dangerous to the account’s owner and to their friends and family.
Warning users about the government
Now, in December, yahoo also decided to get in on the action, and start warning their customers if a state backed hacking attempt is made against their accounts.
Yahoo’s chief information officer wrote in a blog post that users who happen to be targets will receive, along with the warning, steps to ensure that their account is not further compromised.
When asked how they can differentiate between state sponsored hacking attempts and regular hacking attempts, the company refused to go into details, giving a very legitimate reason for that.
As they put it, if they were to divulge how they can tell where the attacks come from, the attackers will know what to avoid. They continued by assuring their customers that they will not notify them unless they are certain of the source of the cyber attack.
The move, despite all appearances to the contrary, might have an ulterior purpose. It’s difficult to gauge the reason why the company will inform users of hacking attempts made by the government, but not by other parties.
It’s probably just a move to show the state all of these companies’ stances on net neutrality and to – putting it informally – fight the power.
Image source: Wikimedia