Hackers have repeatedly been able to penetrate the computers which operate the Nasdaq Stock Market over the past year. Now, federal investigations have begun looking for who is responsible for it and what precisely their end goal is.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the people familiar with the investigations said that the computers that run Nasdaq's trading platform, which controls the trades by investors, were not compromised in any way but it was impossible to pinpoint exactly which other parts of the network were accessed.
The Wall Street Journal's sources said that "[s]o far, [the perpetrators] appear to have just been looking around" and that, in respect to a computer network, this is 'the equivalent of someone sneaking into a house and walking around but... not taking or tampering with anything.'"
Secret Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), which are working to find who's behind the infiltration by reportedly opening an investigation with the New York-based Nasdaq OMX Group, are growing wary of the matter; they have tried to fix all security gaps and exploits but still remain unsure if it will work, since typically hackers find new ways to breach systems. Unfortunately, they have not been able to trace the intrusion to a specific country or individual, nor have they been able to ascertain a motive. Despite that fact, however, evidence trails to Russia as the source of the attacks even if the hackers could be using Russian computers to mask their actual location.
Nasdaq has declined to comment.