The Shadow Brokers – the hacker group who claimed to have stolen a large cache of National Security Agency (NSA) hacking tools – is disappointed to find that it’s the wallflower at the stolen-stuff prom: nobody’s asking it to dance.
On Saturday, the group put up yet another Borat-esque rant, this one about its conclusion that “peoples is not thinking auction is being real.”
The group is also pouting over the lack of media fawning at its feet, whining about “media no make big story” about the second message it posted onto Pastebin.
At the time that Motherboard covered the auction’s lackluster progress – on Saturday, at 4 p.m. EST – the Shadow Brokers had received bids totaling only 1.76 bitcoins, or about $1,082.
Two days later, at the time of writing of this article – Monday at 10:51 am EST – that total hadn’t budged.
Sheesh, I guess the group is right: nobody’s bidding on the pilfered files!
The group is conjecturing that people may be too stupid to bid on stolen files:
This is just being typical “I’m the smartest guy” dumbass mentality of talking heads. If I don’t understand it then it can’t be done and it isn’t real.
I’m going to make up a more reasonable sounding but still fantasy story to sound smart and make myself feel better!
…or that they are too wimpy:
TheShadowBrokers … is thinking peoples is having more balls, is taking bigger risks for to make advantage over adversaries. Equation Group is pwning you everyday, because you are giant [f*cking] pussies.
The group has implied that the files are worth more than $500 million.
Its briefing document is entitled “Equation Group Cyber Weapons Auction – Invitation,” and it claims that it’s found “cyber weapons made by creators of stuxnet, duqu, flame,” and is ready to sell them on the open market.
The Shadow Brokers initially posted a sample that contained exploit code matching the names and functionality of several previously revealed NSA hacking tools.
Experts have concluded that the files are legitimate and that 3 years ago they were carelessly left behind on a remote server once used as a staging area by an NSA-linked hacking organization called Equation Group.
Last week, Reuters confirmed that theory, after speaking with “four people with direct knowledge” of an FBI investigation into the leak.
Whatever employee or contractor made the mistake owned up to it shortly after.
NSA responded by tuning its sensors to detect use of the tools, especially foreign adversaries such as China and Russia that have strong cyber espionage operations, Reuters reports.
So not only are the files dusty: they’re also radioactive. Using the hacking tools would be extremely risky, since a user would stand out like a sore thumb.
Motherboard has reached out to the Shadow Brokers, but the group said in its most recent message that it would only grant interviews if somebody pays for one.
Well, if nobody pays the group the big bucks it’s demanding, at least it’s being crooned at.
Make that Rick Astley’ed at. Yes, the Shadow Brokers group has been Rickrolled!
Someone rickrolled the #ShadowBrokers #EQGRP_Auction bitcoin adress https://t.co/14aqnRSZ2e pic.twitter.com/PdxwQiStuT
— AnonOps (@Anonops_Live) August 17, 2016
Image of NSA courtesy of Shutterstock.
9 comments on “No-one wants to buy the Shadow Brokers’ stolen NSA tools”
Seriously. No one wants these things. Either because the group can’t translate into English so they sound like amateurs or because every one of those tools would be radioactive at scale – the NSA would be all over your operation as soon as you used it.. they designed it, they know the signature.
Not to mention the tools are old (at least three years old), which is practically a lifetime in the world of exploits. For all we know, the exploits have already been patched and are useless by now. No-one is going to take a $500m risk on such old tools.
that’s funny… especially the part about being rickrolled 🙂
“The group has implied that the files are worth more than $500 million.”
They are mistaken, a thing is only worth what people will people will pay for it.
In this case it’s 1.76bc
Part of the issue may be that it’s not a regular auction. In a regular auction, only the winner pays, but the way they want to do it, everyone that bids will part with their money regardless if they win or not. I don’t see the incentive for anyone to bid in that kind of situation.
That does sound like a poor auction model.
I guess Sealed Bid Second Price doesn’t translate easily for Bitcoin.
Some of us think it’s what might very (very, very) loosely be called “satire.” As the carefully and Yodastically pidginated English of the so-called hackers said back when this started:
Auction? Sure! Also, bridge for sale (buyer to collect from Sydney), plus iconic tower (buyer to collect from Paris).
There are a lot of auction scams like this one especially for the likes of ipads and iphones, hopefully most people are wise to this sort of scam by now. Also most of the language in this article went over my head, got the jist but didnt really make much sense.
Please, all they would need to do is release one little piece of information that hasn’t been previously seen by the public. It would go a long way to authenticating their position beyond boisterous bit-scammer.