Yahoo has started to warn its web services users of state sponsored hacking attacks, mimicking Facebook and Google’s priorities. The 20-year old web giant will notify its Yahoo mail and messenger users if the company strongly suspects that a user’s account may have been targeted by a state sponsored actor.
It has to be notified over here that Facebook started a similar process almost two months back and Google from mid 2012- way before NSA Prism activity of internet surveillance was revealed by Edward Snowden.
Yahoo has however declined to reveal the specifics behind a state sponsored attack and a normal practice of hacking by a cyber criminal/s. Its blog post added that in order to prevent the “state sponsored actors” from learning the company’s detection methods, it is not sharing any details publicly about the attacks.
Now, coming to the difference between a normal hack and a nation sponsored actor’s attack, the former is an attack performed by a hacker or a hacking group. But a state sponsored attack by an actor is the one which is being done by National Security Agencies like NSA Prism. They do it in the name of National Security when they find any suspected activity in the internet surfing or telephonic activity of an individual or group.
Note- Microsoft is also in plans to do the same i.e to notify its users about state sponsored attacks from January 1st, 2016.