West should be wary of ‘Green Hat Hackers’

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Western Countries especially United States and UK, need to think about the newly emerged ‘Green Hat Hackers’ who can prove devastative any time. Hamas, the militant group comprising Palestinians, has developed a cyber offensive force and named them as ‘Green Hat Hackers’ or shortly known as GHH.

A special report produced before Atlantic Council suggests that their prime focus is to infiltrate critical infrastructure operating in the west and cripple it or infiltrate it to such as extent that intelligence can be gathered for days.

Unlike what is known about the hacking groups operating from Russia, China, Iran and North Korea; very little is known about Hamas who are discovered taking part in digital espionage and information gathering operations to caress internal and external political objectives.

Their theme of operation is simple: to break into national infrastructures and cause both geopolitical and financial chaos.

Earlier, security companies treated GHHs as non-threatening hackers who are naïve and new in their duty. Lack of experience, not being well-versed in the hacking subject and always an enthusiasm to learn new things, was touted to be their primary aim.

According to a survey conducted by Microsoft Threat Intelligence group, green hat hackers possess great programming degrees and have computer certification background. That means they can work for a good or bad cause and earn in millions within no time.

However, the way their talent is being used depends a lot on the guys who are paying or nurturing them. If they are being nurtured by government, obviously they will be used to down the opponent or adversary.

Hamas group, who ruled Gaza once and named as a terrorist organization in 1997 by the US, UK and Canada, seems to emerge as a decisive force to rule the cyber domain. So, it’s high time for European Union along with other Western Powers should start a cyber statecraft initiative having the potential to neutralize the effects of newly emerged cyber terrorism.

Note- In the year 2012, Hamas played an active role in launching a cyber espionage campaign on the then organized FIFA World Cup. Now, they might also plan a similar campaign on the 2022 FIFA Football World Cup Tournament, if left ignored.

 

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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