“The Equation group:” Hackers have infected computers worldwide with the sneakiest malware ever


NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — A shadowy hacking group has infected computers at companies, universities and governments worldwide with the sneakiest malware ever.

That’s according to a report Monday, February 16th by Internet security company Kaspersky, which described a hacking campaign “that exceeds anything we have ever seen before.” The mysterious group, which researchers nicknamed “the Equation group,” uses malware that’s unusually quiet, complex and powerful.

And in some cases, it planted spyware on computers’ firmware, the programming that lives permanently on hardware. It’s an unheard-of move that means the malware can avoid detection by antivirus software. Reinstalling a computer’s operating system or reformatting the hard disk won’t even fix the problem.

If you’ve got this, you might as well throw your computer away.

What’s even more interesting is that Kaspersky’s researchers say that the Equation group uses a hacking tool called “GROK.” That’s a tool used exclusively by the…

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