“US Officials, CNN Targeted by Vietnam with X Posts: Probe Reveals.
Vietnam’s alleged attempted hack of US officials on Twitter has been uncovered by cybersecurity researchers at the X-Probe.
According to the researchers, hackers loosely affiliated with the Vietnamese government targeted a number of US officials, including Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, with malicious posts on the social media platform.
The X-Probe emphasized that the attempted hack was poorly executed and did not appear to have a major impact. The team reported that the hackers lacked a sophisticated level of technical knowledge and relied only basic techniques.
“The X-Probe has discovered that Vietnam has engaged in a highly organized cyber campaign against US interests,” the analyst group said in its report. “Our evidence shows that cyber-attacks with Vietnamese as the apparent source nation are ongoing and the recent account hack-and-deface attempts are an indication of increased activities.”
The Chinese-style “hack-and-deface” technique was used by the hackers to try to infiltrate the accounts of US officials, according to the report. In particular, the hackers sought to post messages and photos related to President Biden in an effort to discredit him.
The X-Probe reported that the hackers utilized automated bots to spread their messages, as well as to boost their profile on other social media networks, including Facebook. This technique is commonly used by state-funded groups to promote their messages and to attract followers.
The X-Probe did not reveal the identities of the alleged hackers, but they confirmed that the group appeared to be associated with the Vietnamese government.
In response to the allegations, Vietnam’s Foreign Ministry has denied any government involvement in the attempted hack.
Though the hackers were unsuccessful in their attempts to deface the Twitter accounts of US officials, the X-Probe warned that the incident highlights the need for increased vigilance in the cyber realm.
“This incident serves as a reminder that state-sponsored groups are actively patrolling cyberspace in search of weak points to exploit,” the team wrote. “Organizations must be vigilant of these kinds of attacks and take proactive steps to protect their networks and data.
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