Computer Crime Research Center


SOCA's XP hack hit Microsoft

Date: November 14, 2007
Source: ZDNet UK

Microsoft has described the ease with which two officers from the UK's Serious Organised Crime Agency managed to hack into Windows XP as both "enlightening and frightening".

At a Get Safe Online event on Monday aimed at heightening security awareness among small businesses, officers connected a machine running Windows XP Service Pack 1 (SP1) to an unsecured wireless network. The machine was running no antivirus, firewall, or anti-spyware, and contained a sample target file of passwords to be stolen.

The Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) officers, who are e-crime specialists, wished to remain anonymous. A SOCA spokesperson explained that to make covert operations easier "all SOCA officers below a certain level are anonymous, as it is not helpful to have our identities known".

One of the officers, "Mick", remained behind a screen while connecting to the unsecured wireless network and carrying out the hack into the unpatched computer of fellow officer "Andy".
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