Friday, March 7, 2014

COTTONMOUTH-II: NSA Exploit of the Day

Today's item from the NSA's Tailored Access Operations (TAO) group implant catalog:
COTTONMOUTH-II (TS//SI//REL) COTTONMOUTH-II (CM-II) is a Universal Serial Bus (USB) hardware Host Tap, which will provide a covert link over USB link into a target network. CM-II is intended to be operate with a long haul relay subsystem, which is co-located within the target equipment. Further integration is needed to turn this capability into a deployable system.
(TS//SI//REL) CM-II will provide software persistence capability, "in-field" re-programmability, and covert communications with a host software implant over the USB. CM-II will also communicate with Data Network Technologies (DNT) software (STRAITBIZARRE) through a covert channel implemented on the USB, using this communication channel to pass commands and data between hardware and software implants. CM-II will be a GENIE-compliant implant based on CHIMNEYPOOL.
(TS//SI//REL) CM-II consists of the CM-I digital hardware and the long haul relay concealed somewhere within the target chassis. A USB 2.0 HS hub with switches is concealed in a dual stacked USB connector, and the two parts are hard-wired, providing a intra-chassis link. The long haul relay provides the wireless bridge into the target's network.
Unit Cost: 50 units: $200K
Status: Availability -- September 2008
Status: Availability -- January 2009
Unit Cost: 50 units: $1,015K
Page, with graphics, is here. General information about TAO and the catalog is here.

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