U.S. Authorities have identified a major suspect in the so-called “Vault 7” leak that has released a huge cache of information detailing the Central Intelligence Agency’s cyber-tools, including software exploits targeting iPhone and Mac devices.
Owing to the newly unearthed court documents, the government authorities believe Joshua Adam Schulte provided WikiLeaks with top-secret CIA cyber weapons and espionage tools and techniques. The former CIA employee is being held in a Manhattan jail on unrelated charges as federal prosecutors attempt to build a case worthy of filing charges.
Schulte ex CIA left the organization for a private sector job in 2016. Schulte worked in agency’s Engineering Development Group. He was responsible for writing and crafting code that can be used to break into computers, smartphones, and other devices that are generally owned by terrorists and other dangerous organizations.
This code was suspiciously obtained by WikiLeaks. The company went on to subsequently make the code public and titled “Vault 7” which was released in March 2017. The code inside had various different types of shortcomings in the software used in the mobile systems and other gadgets. It has Attack vectors which unearthed the flaws from iOS exploits, both physical and remote, to malware impacting Windows and Android. The code was so powerful that it could easily turn smart TVs into eavesdropping devices which can later be used for hacking purposes.
Following a week after the March’s WikiLeaks revelation. The Federal Bureau of Investigation conducted a search of Schulte’s New York City. However, the FBI found no evidence of any malicious attempts. Schulte, however, was charged last August for a completely different wrongdoing. He was charged with possessing child pornography after investigators discovered illegal content on a server he created in 2009.
Schulte claims he reported “incompetent management and bureaucracy” to the CIA’s inspector general and a congressional oversight committee. He says this was the move cast him in a bad light. Prior to the FBI search last year, Schulte said he was planning on a vacation in Mexico, with his brother which ended up to FBI that he was about to flee the country.