Photo Gallery 'Operation Socialist' Cyber Attack on Belgacom

A cyber attack on Belgacom raised considerable attention last week. Documents leaked by Edward Snowden and seen by SPIEGEL indicate that Britain's GCHQ intelligence agency was responsible for the attack.
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A slide from a "top secret" presentation from Britain's GCHQ intelligence agency. The abbreviation "CNE" stands for Computer Network Exploitation, meaning spying on computer systems. GRX routers make roaming between different mobile phone networks possible. MiTM is short for "Man in the Middle attacks," a complex form of Internet attack.

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QI is short for "Quantum Insert," a technology developed by the NSA to identify computers with spying software (see text). VPN means Virtual Private Network, the term for specially secured Internet connections. According to the slide, the GCHQ wants, among other things, to investigate VPN links from the Belgacom subsidiary Bics to other telecommunications providers.

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This slide reveals the internal codename for Belgacom: "Merion Zeta." The operation is described as a "success."

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Belgacom's headquarters in Brussels: Belgian Prime Minister Elio di Rupo spoke of a "violation of the public firm's integrity."

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