NSA and CIA use ad blocking technology


Earlier this year, a CNET report explored the current state of ad blockers. Among the data cited was a study by software company Blockthrough, which estimated that 40% of adults in the United States use ad blocking technology. It might not surprise you as much, but another recent report from Vice provides a fascinating window into some of the people and organizations using ad blocking technology.

In the Vice article, Joseph Cox explained how the U.S. intelligence community began to use ad blocking technology. This includes the CIA and the NSA, among a number of other agencies. Last week, Senator Ron Wyden wrote a letter to the Office of Management and Budget calling on them to “protect federal networks from spies and foreign criminals who abuse online advertising for the purpose of hacking and surveillance.”

Wyden cited NSA and Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency guidelines recommending the use of ad blocking software. Wyden goes on to quote the CIO of the Intelligence Community, who said: “IC has implemented network-based ad blocking technologies and uses information from multiple layers, including information from the network. domain name system, to block unwanted and malicious advertising content. “

A CrowdStrike report released earlier this year warned of the dangers of “malvertising” – which has emerged on legitimate websites and has been used to give control over computers and mobile devices to one. third. This is quite alarming in itself, so it’s not hard to see why people dealing with classified information would be particularly worried. Will Wyden’s letter find a welcome response? It could be the difference between an ordinary day and a looming crisis.

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