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Hackers target deal-rich pharma sector

Look to gain access to insider information for stock market gain
hackers pharma malware healthcare

Executives at pharmaceutical and healthcare companies are among those being targeted by a group of hackers who want access to confidential deal information.

Security experts warn that the group, known as FIN4, has been collecting information from almost 100 publically-traded companies - or their advisors – with a particular focus on pharma and healthcare.

The sector has seen a notable resurgence in deal-making this year, headed up by the $16bn asset-swap between GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis.

Dan McWhorter, VP of threat intelligence at online security firm FireEye, said: “Advanced threat actors conducting attacks to play the stock market to their advantage has long been a worry but never truly seen in action.

“FIN4 is the first time we are seeing a group of very sophisticated attackers actually systematically acquire information that only has true value to a criminal when used in relation to the stock market.”

FireEye said that, rather than using malware in its attached FIN4 is instead relying on 'weaponised' versions of legitimate corporate files.

Since mid-2013 the hackers are thought to have targeted information on companies' product development, M&A strategies, legal issues and purchasing processes.

4th December 2014

From: Regulatory

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