A group of Russian hackers have successfully hacked servers of Dow Jones, the parent company and owner of Wall Street and other news publications. The motive behind the hack according to investigations so far was to seek trading tips.
In an investigation that has lasted over a year already, the Secret Service, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are looking into a case of Russian hackers infiltrating the servers of Dow Jones & Co, according to Bloomberg.
Dow Jones, an arm of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp suffered a breach recently that exposed the details of paying subscribers. According to sources close to the incident however, the news of the breach caused by Russian hackers is far more serious than the one previously reported.
As things stand, it is unclear if both intrusions are related or if the publication’s news-reporting service was affected with a suspicion of insider-trading. Two sources, as described by Bloomberg note that hackers tried to find information about stories that were due for publication. Altogether, Bloomberg reports that four people familiar with the investigation have confirmed that Dow Jones’ servers have been infiltrated by Russian hackers.
Information that is under embargo by corporations and other entities to restrict publication until a later time could prove to be inherently valuable to those making bets and looking for insider information that could lead to better gains.
Additionally, Dow Jones proves to be a particularly ripe target for hackers as Dow Jones provides a news service for global business content to about 1.1 million active users. According to the publication’s own annual report, “more than 4,000 sources make information available via Factiva on or before the date of publication by the source.”
The FBI and SEC have reportedly spent months in trying to figure how the intruders could potentially profit from the breached data and the White House has also been briefed by the agencies.
In a statement, Dow Jones said:
“To the best of our knowledge, we have received no information from the authorities about any such alleged matter, and we are looking into whether there is any truth whatsoever to this report by a competitor news organization.”