Cyberattack

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Building a Secure Global Network

Recently, the DNS has come under an extensive attack. The so-called "DNSpionage" campaigns have brought to light the myriad methods used to infiltrate networks. These attacks employed phishing, system hopping via key exfiltration, and software zero day exploits, illustrating that many secure networks may not be fully protected. more

Routing Security - Getting Better, But No Reason to Rest!

In January 2018, I looked back at 2017 to figure out how routing security looked globally and on a country level. Using the same metrics and methodology, I've recently taken a look at 2018 to see if we're making improvements. The good news is, it seems like the routing system is doing better! But there is still much work to be done. Using BGPStream.com, a great public service providing information about suspicious events in the routing system, I analyzed the number of incidents... more

Lessons Learned from the Namejuice/DROA/DROC Outage

Last week an ICANN registrar, Namejuice, went off the air for the better part of the day -- disappearing off the internet at approximately 8:30 am, taking all domains delegated to its nameservers with it, and did not come back online until close to 11 pm ET. That was a full business day and more of complete outage for all businesses, domains, websites, and email who were using the Namejuice nameservers -- something many of them were doing. more

Continued Threats from Malware

As part of my job, I manage an incident response team that was engaged by a significant organization in Georgia whose network was infected by the QBOT (a.k.a. QAKBOT) malware. The customer had been infected for over a year, several teams before ours had failed to solve the problem, and they continued to get reinfected by the malware when they thought they had eradicated it. Over time it had spread to more than 1,000 computers in their ecosystem stealing user credentials along the way. more

The Economics of Hacking an Election

There have been many news stories of late about potential attacks on the American electoral system. Which attacks are actually serious? As always, the answer depends on economics. There are two assertions I'll make up front. First, the attacker -- any attacker -- is resource-limited. They may have vast resources, and in particular, they may have more resources than the defenders -- but they're still limited. Why? more

Why You Must Learn to Love DNSSEC

It's been nearly two months since the high profile BGP hijack attack against MyEtherwallet, where crypto thieves used BGP leaks to hijack MEW's name servers, which were on Amazon's Route53, and inserted their own fake name servers which directed victims to their own fake wallet site, thereby draining some people's wallets. It generated a lot of discussion at the time... What isn't fully appreciated is that attack has, in fact, changed the game somewhat... more

A Trebuchet Defence in the Age of the Augmented Reality Cyberwarrior

I've been ruminating on this for a while, this follow-up that was a decade in the offing. My article Trench Warfare in the Age of The Laser-Guided Missile from January 2007 did pretty good in terms of views since I wrote it. Less so in terms of how well the ideas aged or didn't, but that's the nature of the beast. Everything gets worse, and simultaneously, better, and so here we are: Using embarrassingly ancient approaches to next-generation threats. Plus ça change. more

Schneier and Kerr on Encryption Workarounds

Bruce Schneier is a famous cryptography expert and Orin Kerr a famous cyberlaw professor. Together they've published a law journal article on Encryption Workarounds. It's intended for lawyers so it's quite accessible to non-technical readers. The article starts with a summary of how encryption works, and then goes through six workarounds to get the text of an encrypted message. more

Is Blockchain Causing More Cybersecurity Attacks in the Financial Industry?

There's a lot of misunderstanding about blockchain. A recent study by HSBC, for example, found that 59 percent of customers around the world had never heard of it. Yet, while that alone is quite telling, it's probably more alarming to consider the fact that very same poll revealed that 80 percent of people who had hard of blockchain did not understand what it is. This level of confusion isn't confined to the general population either. more

Routing Attacks on Internet Services

This post was co-authored by Yixin Sun, Annie Edmundson, Henry Birge-Lee, Jennifer Rexford, and Prateek Mittal. In this post, we discuss a recent thread of research that highlights the insecurity of Internet services due to the underlying insecurity of Internet routing. We hope that this thread facilitates important dialog in the networking, security, and Internet policy communities to drive change and adoption of secure mechanisms for Internet routing. more

1 Terabit DDoS Attacks Become a Reality; Reflecting on Five Years of Reflections

Reflection amplification is a technique that allows cyber attackers to both magnify the amount of malicious traffic they can generate, and obfuscate the sources of that attack traffic. For the past five years, this combination has been irresistible to attackers, and for good reason. This simple capability, of turning small requests into larger, 'amplified' responses, changed the Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack landscape dramatically. more

Humming an Open Internet Demise in London?

In mid-March, the group dubbed by Wired Magazine 20 years ago as Crypto-Rebels and Anarchists - the IETF - is meeting in London. With what is likely some loud humming, the activists will likely seek to rain mayhem upon the world of network and societal security using extreme end-to-end encryption, and collaterally diminish some remaining vestiges of an "open internet." Ironically, the IETF uses what has become known as the "NRA defence": extreme encryption doesn't cause harm, criminals and terrorists do. more

Why Is It So Hard to Run a Bitcoin Exchange?

One of the chronic features of the Bitcoin landscape is that Bitcoin exchanges screw up and fail, starting with Mt. Gox. There's nothing conceptually very hard about running an exchange, so what's the problem? The first problem is that Bitcoin and other blockchains are by design completely unforgiving. If there is a bug in your software which lets people steal coins, too bad, nothing to be done. more

The Over-Optimization Meltdown

In simple terms, Meltdown and Spectre are simple vulnerabilities to understand. Imagine a gang of thieves waiting for a stage coach carrying a month's worth of payroll. There are two roads the coach could take, and a fork, or a branch, where the driver decides which one to take. The driver could take either one. What is the solution? Station robbers along both sides of the branch, and wait to see which one the driver chooses. more

A Year in Review: 14,000 Routing Incidents In 2017

How was the state of the Internet's routing system in 2017? Let's take a look back using data from BGPStream. Some highlights: 13,935 total incidents (either outages or attacks like route leaks and hijacks); Over 10% of all Autonomous Systems on the Internet were affected; 3,106 Autonomous Systems were a victim of at least one routing incident; 1,546 networks caused at least one incident. more

News Briefs

Russia to Disconnect Entirely From the Internet as Part of Cyber-Defense Measure

Cryptominers Infected 10x More Organizations Than Ransomware in 2018

US Government and Businesses Need Collaborative Procedures Against Major Cyberattacks, Warns Report

China, Russia Posing More Aligned Cyberattack Threats to the US, Says Chief of National Intelligence

An Investigation Shows How Bomb Threat Scammers Hijacked Thousands of Big-Name Domains

US Department of Homeland Security Issues Emergency Directive Ordering Agencies to Audit DNS Records

Global DNS Record Manipulation, Hijacking Campaign at Massive Scale Linked to Iran

McAfee Labs 2018 Report Reveals 480 New Threats Per Minute, Sharp Increase in IoT-Focused Malware

Latest Wave of Organized Phishing Attacks Beat Two-Factor Authentication

Chinese Hackers Have Infiltrated US Navy Contractors to Steal Range of Data Including Missile Plans

Criminals Using New Phishing Techniques to Hide from Victims and Investigators, Reports APWG

Hackers Behind Marriott Breach Left Clues Suggesting Link to Chinese Government

Strange Email Used to Inform Marriott Customers About the Massive Data Breach

Paris Cyber Agreement Has Grown to More Than 450 Signatories

US, Russia and China Stay Out of Paris International Cybersecurity Pact

Weekend Cyberattack on Pakistani bank reported to be a Historic $6 Million Loss, Bank Denies Claim

Yahoo Agrees to Pay $50M and Other Costs for the Massive Security Breach Disclosed in 2016

Most Cyberattacks Are From Hostile States, Reports U.K.'s National Cyber Security Centre

Facebook Security Vulnerability Allowed Attackers to Steal User Access Tokens Affecting 50 Million

Trump Administration Says US Will Start Using Offensive Strategy Towards Cyberattacks

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