WikiLeaks said Tuesday that leaked documents published to its site reveal that the CIA has a global covert hacking program through which it can exploit dozens of weaknesses in various popular tech products. CNET is unable to verify whether the documents are real or have been altered. Meanwhile, the CIA said it doesn't comment "on the authenticity or content of purported intelligence documents."
This slideshow offers a look at some of the tech WikiLeaks says is vulnerable. Google's Android mobile operating system is reportedly among the affected systems. Google declined to comment.
WikiLeaks has a long track record of releasing top secret government documents, and experts who've started to sift through the material said it appears legitimate, according to CBS News. It's unclear, though, whether these programs are still running and whether they affect the latest versions of the hardware and software.Gallery published March 7, 2017.
You think the iPhone is safe? Not according to WikiLeaks, which as part of its latest document dump alleges that the Apple gadget, too, is vulnerable to the CIA's spying eyes. Apple declined to comment.
Microsoft's Windows is allegedly accessible. The company said it's looking into the situation.
Apple's iPad is reportedly in the mix. (Again, Apple has declined to comment.)
The CIA's techniques allegedly permit the agency to bypass even the encryption of WhatsApp, a messaging app that's popular around the world. WhatsApp declined to comment.
The CIA's global covert hacking program also tested (but never deployed) a hack that could turn a Samsung smart TVs (the F8000 models) into tappable microphones. A "Fake-Off" mode would supposedly trick the owner into thinking the TV is off when it's on. The television then operates as a bug, recording conversations in the room and sending them over the internet to a covert CIA server. Samsung didn't respond to a request for comment.
The Signal app uses data encryption to send messages that can be read only by the designated receiver. But WikiLeaks says that by hacking the phones Signal runs on, the CIA can collect audio and message traffic before encryption is applied.
"The CIA/Wikileaks story today is about getting malware onto phones, none of the exploits are in Signal or break Signal Protocol encryption," said Moxie Marlinspike, the founder of Signal. "This story isn't about Signal or WhatsApp, but to the extent that it is, we see it as confirmation that what we're doing is working."
The Telegram app is encrypted, too, but WikiLeaks says the CIA can collect audio and message traffic before encryption takes place.
Telegram said on its website that the problem lies with operating systems and not encrypted messaging apps and that naming specific encrypted services is "misleading."