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Business as Usual after Nasdaq Confirms Cyber Attack

Exchanges and traders said they will continue normal business with Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. at today’s market open despite revelations that its systems had been hacked, Dow Jones reported.

Nasdaq OMX in a statement Saturday confirmed that its computer network had been breached by unidentified parties who installed malware on a Web-accessible system called Director’s Desk, a communications platform that stores critical data for more than 10,000 board members of several hundred Fortune 500 companies.

Writing for Forbes, security expert Jeffrey Carr said the length of time involved of the intrusion “strongly suggests state-sponsorship because it takes skill to continually persist within a network for that long and skill costs money.”

“Since the value of the target must exceed the cost of the attack (my pet theorem), and considering the nature of the information stored in Directors Desk LLC servers . . . this falls within the scope of an Advanced Persistent Threat attack,” he writes.

The intrusion occurred late last year, but Nasdaq OMX said it had held off on notifying customers at the request of the Justice Department, The New York Times reported.

Although Nasdaq said in a release there was no evidence any Directors Desk customer information has been accessed or acquired by hackers, Carr suggested that because of the scope of the breach, the company should consult with security experts who understand and work APT attacks as soon as possible.

“If you're a Directors Desk LLC customer, you should probably do the same,” he urged.

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