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This article was published on April 7, 2017


WikiLeaks reveals Grasshopper, the CIA’s Windows hacking tool

WikiLeaks reveals Grasshopper, the CIA’s Windows hacking tool
Rachel Kaser
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Rachel Kaser

Internet Culture Writer

Rachel is a writer and former game critic from Central Texas. She enjoys gaming, writing mystery stories, streaming on Twitch, and horseback Rachel is a writer and former game critic from Central Texas. She enjoys gaming, writing mystery stories, streaming on Twitch, and horseback riding. Check her Twitter for curmudgeonly criticisms.

In case you haven’t had your dose of paranoia fuel today, WikiLeaks released new information concerning a CIA malware program called “Grasshopper,” that specifically targets Windows.

The Grasshopper framework was (is?) allegedly used by the CIA to make custom malware payloads. According to the user guide:

Grasshopper is a software tool used to build custom installers for target computers running Microsoft Windows operating systems.

Grasshopper is designed to detect the OS and protection on any Windows computer on which it’s deployed, and it can escape detection by anti-malware software.

If that was enough for you to put your computer in stasis, brace yourself for a doozy: Grasshopper reinstalls itself every 22 hours, even if you have Windows Update disabled.

As if this wasn’t alarming enough, the Grasshopper user guide even states upfront that Grasshopper uses bits from a toolkit taken from Russian organized crime.

I’d give some advice on how to duck any potential Grasshoppers, but I’m honestly at a loss. And considering I’m writing this from a Windows computer, I guess all I can say is, “Good luck.”

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