Cyberattack

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Spamhaus Tells Us That Botnets Are Getting Worse

The Spamhaus Project just published a long article about the botnets they've been watching during 2014. As this chart shows, we're not making any progress. They also note that the goals of botnets have changed. While in the past they were mostly used to send spam, now they're stealing banking and financial information, engaging in click fraud, and used for DDoS and other malicious mischief. more»

We Are All Sony

"Nobody knows anything," screenwriter William Goldman (think "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" and "The Princess Bride") said famously of Hollywood. The same may be said of enterprise security. Word now comes that the Sony hack for which the FBI has fingered North Korea may, in fact, be the work of some laid-off and disgruntled Sony staff. But that's not clear, either. more»

Did the DPRK Hack Sony?

My Twitter feed has exploded with lots of theorizing about whether or not North Korea really hacked Sony. Most commentators are saying "no", pointing to the rather flimsy public evidence. They may be right -- but they may not be. Worse yet, we may never know the truth. One thing is quite certain, though: the "leaks" to the press about the NSA having concluded it was North Korea were not unauthorized leaks; rather, they were an official statement released without a name attached. more»

Can Big Companies Stop Being Hacked?

The recent huge security breach at Sony caps a bad year for big companies, with breaches at Target, Apple, Home Depot, P.F.Changs, Neiman Marcus, and no doubt other companies who haven't admitted it yet. Is this the new normal? Is there any hope for our private data? I'm not sure, but here are three observations... This week Brian Krebs reported on several thousand Hypercom credit card terminals that all stopped working last Sunday. Had they all been hacked? more»

One Year Later: Lessons Learned from the Target Breach

As the autumn leaves fall from naked trees to be trampled or encased in the winter snow, it reminds us of another year quickly gone by. Yet, for organisations that were breached and publicly scrutinised for their security lapses, it's been a long and arduous year. It was about this time last year that the news broke of Target's mega breach. Every news outlet was following the story and drip feeding readers with details, speculation and "expert opinion" on what happened, why it happened and who did it. more»

Why OIRA Needs to Coordinate Federal Cyber Security Regulation

Two quick facts about American industry's resilience against cyber-attack, (1) our critical infrastructure is inadequately protected and (2) federal regulation will be required to fix the problem, reliance on market forces alone will not be sufficient irrespective of whether or not Sony Pictures survives. Although regulation is needed, it needs to be coordinated and, above all, cost-effective. Which agency is charge of regulating cybersecurity? Right now, it's a free for all with agencies staking out turf and claims of authority. more»

Which Domains Stand the Strongest Against Phishing Attacks?

The latest Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) Global Phishing Survey, which analyzed over 100,000 phishing attacks in the first half of 2014, examines the progress that top level domains (TLDs) are making in responding to phishing attacks that use their TLDs. The report finds the .INFO domain has the lowest average phishing uptimes as compared to other TLDs, such as .COM and .NET. more»

Nameserver Operators Need the Ability to "Disavow" Domains

Yesterday's DDoS attack against DNSimple brought to light a longstanding need for DNS nameserver operators to have an ability to unilaterally repudiate domains from their nameservers. The domains under attack started off on DNSMadeEasy, migrated off to DNSimple and took up residence there for about 12 hours, causing a lot of grief to DNSimple and their downstream customers. more»

If It Doesn't Exist, It Can't Be Abused

A number of outlets have reported that the U.S. Post Service was hacked, apparently by the Chinese government. The big question, of course, is why. It probably isn't for ordinary criminal reasons: The intrusion was carried out by "a sophisticated actor that appears not to be interested in identity theft or credit card fraud," USPS spokesman David Partenheimer said. ... But no customer credit card information from post offices or online purchases at usps.com was breached, they said. more»

Cigarette Smuggling and Cyber Security: Low-Tech Crimes Fund High-Tech Threats

You may not connect the cheap cigarettes sold under the counter (or out of a trunk, bodega or by a street vendor) with the mysterious charges on your credit card that you don't remember making or the cash that has, somehow, just disappeared from your bank account. You also may not connect that website selling cheap cigarettes made in second and third world countries with Shellshock or whatever the fashionably scary cyber-threat of the day is when you're reading this. more»