900 Chinese Accounts Removed by Meta Due to Hacking Issues | Technology news
New Delhi: Social media giant Meta has taken down over 40 accounts run by an Indian firm CyberRoot Risk Advisory, allegedly involved in hacking-for-hire services, the online giant said in a report.
Meta also took down a network of around 900 fake accounts on Instagram and Facebook operated from China by an unknown entity.
These accounts were focused on collecting data on people in Myanmar, India, Taiwan, the United States and China, including military personnel, pro-democracy activists, government employees, politicians and journalists, according to the company’s surveillance-for-hire threat report. Industry released on 15 December.
“We took down a network of more than 40 accounts on Facebook and Instagram run by an Indian firm called CyberRoot Risk Advisory Private. Instead of sharing malware directly on our apps, this group’s activity manifested itself primarily in social development and phishing , often intended to trick people into giving up their credentials to various online accounts across the internet,” the report says.
According to Meta, CyberRoot used fake accounts to create fictitious personas tailored to gain the trust of the people they targeted around the world and to appear more credible, these personas impersonated journalists, business executives and media personalities.
In some cases, CyberRoot also created accounts that were very identical to accounts associated with their targets such as friends and family members, with only slightly changed usernames, likely in an attempt to trick people into getting involved, the report said.
Meta said they found CyberRoot targeting people around the world involved in various industries, including cosmetic surgery and law firms in Australia, real estate and investment companies in Russia, private equity firms and pharmaceutical companies in the United States, environmental and anti-corruption activists in Angola, gambling entities in Great Britain and mining companies in New Zealand.
“They were focused on business leaders, lawyers, doctors, activists, journalists and members of the clergy in countries such as Kazakhstan, Djibouti, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and Iceland,” the report said.
Meta said it continues to investigate and take action against spyware vendors around the world, including in China, Russia, Israel, the United States and India, who targeted people in about 200 countries and territories.
The social media firm has found in its research that the global surveillance industry continues to grow and indiscriminately target people ? including journalists, activists, litigants and political opposition ? to gather intelligence, manipulate and compromise their devices and accounts over the internet.