Israel’s intelligence community is investigating a mysterious but failed hack that targeted about 20 Israeli cryptocurrency executives in early September, according to Haaretz.
Executives reportedly lost access to their Telegram and email clients and consequently had their identities stolen, in the likely SMS spoofing incident that only appears to have hit users of the telecom giant known as Partner.
The hackers demanded crypto payments in exchange for returning account access, but cyber intelligence firm Pandora Security told Haaretz no payments appear to have been made.
It’s not clear who the hacker was or where he was based, but Pandora’s co-founder Tzahi Ganot said he suspects state-sponsored actors may have mounted the attack from the U.K.’s E.E. network.
He told Haaretz that Mossad and Shin Bet agents “were involved” in investigating the incident, as Israel considers its telecom networks to be “critical infrastructure.”
Partner denied any wrongdoing in a statement to Haaretz. It said hacks like this can happen to ” clients of other firms as well.”