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Tailored Access Operations

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adroth:
The US government hacking team

https://youtu.be/bDJb8WOJYdA

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Head of NSA's Elite Hacking Unit: How We Hack
By LEE FERRAN  Jan 28, 2016, 12:31 PM ET

http://abcnews.go.com/International/head-nsas-elite-hacking-unit-hack/story?id=36573676

Inside the notoriously secretive National Security Agency is an elite unit made up of some of the best hackers on the planet, charged with breaking into computer networks around the world. Exactly how the Tailored Access Operations (TAO) cell works is a closely-held secret -- despite some recent leaks -- but in a rare public appearance, TAO’s chief shed some light on how America’s top cyber spies do their thing.

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adroth:
How the NSA’s Secret Elite Hacking Unit Works
MAY 29, 2014 / by EVAN WEXLER •  ELIAS MALLETTE

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/article/how-the-nsas-secret-elite-hacking-unit-works/

Snowden documents leaked to Der Spiegel in December 2013 describe a different type of NSA program from the sort that is usually publicized.

Rather than revealing software developed by the agency in order to access computers, these revelations describe a secret elite hacking unit, dubbed Tailored Access Operations, or TAO.

FRONTLINE asked security expert Bruce Schneier to break down its capabilities:


The NSA is thought to deploy the TAO unit for specific hard-to-get targets — for example, to hack systems, tap cellular phone networks, or intercept routers and servers at shipping ports — in order to implant them with surveillance devices.

Still, the extent of the unit’s capabilities remain somewhat unknown.

TAO is apparently a mystery even to many NSA employees, who require special security clearance to get access to its command center at the NSA’s headquarters in Fort Meade, Maryland.

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