NEWS FROM THE LAB - Friday, December 9, 2011

Trade Fair... For Trojans Posted by Mikko @ 13:16 GMT

Trojans, backdoors, keyloggers and eavesdropping is used by online criminals. The same techniques are also used by governments. Some government do this to spy on their own people or to find dissidents. Other governments do this while investigating criminal suspects.

Most of the technology used in such intrusions are not developed by the governments themselves. They are made by private companies which are specializing in providing exploits, infection proxies and backdoors to governments.

For more background, see our blog posts:

  •  Egypt, FinFisher Intrusion Tools and Ethics
  •  Possible Governmental Backdoor Found ("Case R2D2")
  •  More Info on German State Backdoor

Where do governments buy this stuff from? Well, there's a conference and a trade fair on this very topic. It's called ISS World and it runs five times a year.

However, you can't simply walk into these events, as they are "by invitation only", and available only to "Telecommunication service providers, government employees and Law Enforcement Officers".

Nevertheless, we couldn't resist taking a peek when ISS World was in Kuala Lumpur this week.

ISS World Kuala Lumpur

Here's examples of the talks that were delivered:

ISS World Kuala Lumpur

The event was in a local Hilton, behind closed doors:

ISS World Kuala Lumpur

List of sponsors:

ISS World Kuala Lumpur

And here's the FinFisher booth, showcasing their IT Intrusion wares:

ISS World Kuala Lumpur

For more coverage on this mysterious event, see stories by WSJ (2011) and Wired (2006).