The terror group Hamas launched a cyberattack aimed at entrapping Israel soldiers by setting up fake social media accounts allegedly of beautiful young Israeli women attempting to lure the young men into a relationship, the IDF has discovered.
This was Hamas’ latest attempt and at least the third such cyberattack in recent years in an effort to obtain military intelligence. The IDF and Shin Bet said it thwarted the attack over the weekend, taking down the servers used by the terror organization.
The hackers, posing as recent female immigrants, promised to sent the soldiers nude photos if they would download specific software, which was actually programming that would give the hackers access to the soldiers’ phones.
The IDF said that just a few hundred soldiers were affected and did not believe that Hamas obtained any significant intelligence.
An IDF colonel, who could not be named for security reasons, said Hamas used more sophisticated methods this time than in two previous efforts. She said they also posed as new immigrants in order to avoid phone calls and to excuse any grammatical and spelling errors in their Hebrew.
The Hamas hackers created profiles for these women using Israeli names and creating multiple social media accounts in order to make them appear more realistic. They offered photos of themselves which would only be sent via certain apps.
“Once the application was downloaded onto the phone, they’d get a fictitious notification that the application wasn’t supported by the phone and it would disappear. But the phone would be infected,” Col. “Resh” said.
The spyware connected the phone to Hamas servers where the hackers could activate its camera to take pictures, download files and see the soldiers’ contacts and GPS data. At that point, Hamas’ hackers would cut off communication with the soldiers and the non-existent women would disappear.
Col. Resh said soldiers have been warned to voice contact with people on social media that they do not know.