The Register - Security

IEEE Spectrum Computing Channel

Sep 23, 2013

4 New Ways to Smuggle Messages Across the Internet

SkyDe, StegTorrent, StegSuggest, and WiPad make hiding messages in plain sight—steganography—untraceable

 By Wojciech Mazurczyk, Krzysztof Szczypiorski & Józef Lubacz

Illustration by Carl De TorresTheir neighbors thought they were just ordinary U.S. residents, but secretly they were spies, sent by Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service to gather information on U.S. policies and programs. For years they thwarted detection partly by hiding secret correspondence in seemingly innocent pictures posted on public websites. They encoded and decoded the dispatches using custom-made software.

But the scheme wasn’t as covert as the spies had assumed. Eventually investigators from the U.S. Department of Justice tracked down the altered images, which helped build a case against the Russians. In June 2010, federal agents arrested 10 of them, who admitted to being secret agents a few weeks later.

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4 New Ways to Smuggle Messages Across the Internet

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