Belgacom: It Was The Brits

The recent “nation-state hacker” attack on the Belgian telco Belgacom was the handiwork of British SIGINT mavens GCHQ. A “Cheltenham-in-the-middle” attack, as The Reg put it.

Using an advanced technique called a “Quantum Insert,” traffic from several Belgacom employees was redirected to malicious websites that planted malware.

It seems man-in-the-middle attacks are nation-state hackers’ stock in trade. The goal of the hack was to co-opt the Belgacom central router in order to MITM smartphone users.

The term “Quantum Insert” certainly sounds alluring. Beyond-advanced quantum chips that entangle their way into random users’ data streams? Could be. Would be quite sexy.

Or, it could just be a BGP attack, as covered here many times.

There is one mystery remaining. Why call it “Operation Socialist?” Anyway, considering the “ultimate goal” of compromising an entire national telecommunications provider was not to snoop on calls or even snarf text messages… but to *attack smartphones…*

Maybe you should wait two weeks and stage your own October Revolution:

– rally the proletariat under a banner, “You have nothing to lose but your data bill!”
– rent a Soviet APC and make like the Lithuanians. ( – set your ringer to the Internationale and leave the thing at an NRA meeting

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