Following the hacking of LoopPay, a Massachusetts startup which Samsung bought up for $250 million in February, cybersecurity analysts reveal the hackers may have been targeting top individuals using the service rather than trying to acquire consumer data for profit.
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Samsung agreed to the fact that LoopPay’s security was breached; the electronics company uses LoopPay’s technology for its Samsung Pay service. Samsung however disclosed that the hackers accessed LoopPay’s office network, and not the systems for Samsung Pay. No personal payment information is compromised, and the affected systems have been isolated for repairs.
It is speculated that the Codoso Group might have been behind the attack. Based in China, this group has been known to carry out massive cyber attacks on financial and defense organizations around the world, and they are also linked to attacks on the Uyghur minority of the country. They are alleged to be affiliated with the Chinese government.
Senior security analyst at TripWire – a cyber threat detection software company, Ken Westin, believed the hackers only probably wanted to access LoopPay’s code so as to be able to track certain individuals with massive credit worth or having some political significance, but not necessarily to steal consumer information for sales.
Alex Holden, CEO of Hold Security, a consultancy firm, agrees with Westin.
Westin however noted that Samsung or LoopPay should still remain worried, because even though they have covered the base of this particular attack, the hackers may have laid the groundwork for future invasions and continues to probe for weak points in the company’s network and infrastructure. But this shouldn’t necessarily prevent consumers from using Samsung Pay.
"I would be cautious, as you should be with any new sort of payment service, but I don't think this is a reason not to use the service at this time," Westin said.
Just a few weeks before Samsung bought LoopPay in February, the latter’s network was compromised and hackers were within the infrastructure for close to five months before a group tracking Codoso was able to detect the breach in LoopPay’s systems. This shows that LoopPay may have strong intrusion-prevention capabilities but week detection tools for knowing about intrusions.
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