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FBI officials posed as a fake Symantec employee

‘Hackers attempted to extort money’ reveals Symantec

The Security firm has revealed that hackers tried to extort money in exchange for keeping source code private.

Symantec contacted US law enforcement after being approached by hackers last month, the FBI then pretended to be the security firm in order to ‘offer’ the hackers $50,000. Officials posed as a fake Symantec employee named Sam Thomas, which after offering the money, told hackers to “make a public statement on behalf of your group that you lied about the hack (as you previously stated).”

Unfortunately it seems not all went to plan as more code has allegedly been released after the email negotiations apparently broke down. The hackers suspected FBI involvement and replied to the money offer with: “say hi to FBI agents.”

In a statement, the company said: "Symantec conducted an internal investigation into this incident and also contacted law enforcement, given the attempted extortion and apparent theft of intellectual property.

"The communications with the person(s) attempting to extort the payment from Symantec were part of the law enforcement investigation.

"Given that the investigation is still ongoing, we are not going to disclose the law enforcement agencies involved and have no additional information to provide."

It is suspected that the hackers are from the India-based group the Lord of Dharmaraja, part of the wider Anonymous collective.

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