Cyberattack

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Cyberattacks Will Be Disruptive, Not Destructive, Says Howard Schmidt

In a recent interview by Krish Raghav, from Wall Street Journal's LiveMint.com, Howard Schmidt, an information networks expert and a senior cyber-security adviser in the Bush administration, talked about several hot Internet issues, including net neutrality and cyber-attacks. In this report, Raghav starts with the following statement: "In the last 12 months, some 10 Indian government ministry websites have been targets of cyber-attacks. Recently, security experts with Boston-based Core Security Technologies said such attackers could "gain control
of countries' water treatment plants, natural gas pipelines and other critical utilities". more

Why Passive DNS Matters in Cybersecurity

Imagine a scenario. Your website analysis shows that your page has stopped receiving visitors, yet there are no complaints that your domain is unreachable. Strange, isn't it? You are certainly wondering: What's going on? Where are my customers? You see, what happened is that you are facing the consequences of the lack of domain name system (DNS) security. more

Cyberwar Against Britain Waged by Criminals and Terrorists

Britain's Government has warned that computer networks controlling electricity supplies, telecommunications and banking are under constant attack at a rate of thousands of times a day. According to reports, the cyberwar against Britain is waged by criminals and terrorists some of whom are backed by foreign stats. "If you take the whole gamut of threats, from state-sponsored organizations to industrial espionage, private individuals and malcontents, you're talking about a remarkable number of attempted attacks on our system -- I'd say in the thousands," Lord West of Spithead, the Security Minister said. "Some are spotted instantly. Others are much, much cleverer." more

NYT: US Weighing Risks of Civilian Harm in Cyberwarfare

John Markoff and Thom Shanker reporting in the New York Times: "It would have been the most far-reaching case of computer sabotage in history. In 2003, the Pentagon and American intelligence agencies made plans for a cyberattack to freeze billions of dollars in the bank accounts of Saddam Hussein and cripple his government's financial system before the United States invaded Iraq. He would have no money for war supplies. No money to pay troops... But the attack never got the green light. Bush administration officials worried that the effects would not be limited to Iraq but would instead create worldwide financial havoc..." more

Microsoft Offers $250K Reward for the Arrest of Conficker Computer Warm Authors

Microsoft is trying to put some pressure on the criminals responsible for the worst Internet worm outbreak in years, offering a $250,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of Conficker's creators. The software vendor said it was also working with security researchers, domain name registrars and the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to try to take down the servers that have been launching the Conficker attacks. ICANN is the nonprofit corporation that oversees Internet addresses. more

U.S. Congress Fears Cyberattack on Electric Power Grids

The potential for "cybersecurity" attacks on the United State's electric power grids has spurred politicians to consider legislation to broaden federal authority over electric companies.

Congress already has been consulting with federal agencies and industry associations over how to craft such legislation. On Thursday, legislators sought further input at a hearing before the House Energy and Commerce's subcommittee on energy and air quality. more

Mysterious Hacker Claims to Have Hacked a Group Linked to the NSA

A mysterious hacker or hackers going by the name 'The Shadow Brokers' claims to have hacked a group linked to the NSA and dumped a bunch of its hacking tools. In a bizarre twist, the hackers are also asking for 1 million bitcoin (around $568 million) in an auction to release more files. more

US States Taking Increasingly Active Role Against Cybercrime

It's unclear whether cyber crime is increasing or simply being reported more often -- or a combination of the two. But as the number of cyber crime cases increase, state and local law enforcement agencies are taking an increasingly active role in investigating them. The number of complaints that individuals filed with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) jumped more than 30 percent from 2007 to 2008 and corporate cyber crimes continues to make headlines. The FBI, nonprofit National White Collar Crime Center and Bureau of Justice Assistance jointly operate the IC3... more

United States and Britain to Conduct Financial Cyber-Security Test

U.S. and Britain plan to conduct a test later this month to assess how regulators for the world's two biggest financial centers in New York and London would communicate in the event of a major cyberattack or broader IT problems, a spokesman for British government cybersecurity body CERT-UK said on Monday. more

Security Experts Criticize Obama's New Cybersecurity Plan, Say It's Full of Holes

Despite being a respectable start, security experts call the report overheated and "clear as mud"... while many experts applaud this new focus as vital to protecting critical U.S. infrastructure and economic institutions, some analysts have noted that the report fails to answer many key questions, contains a number of inconsistencies and possible inaccuracies, and generally exaggerates the threat to the country. "It's a plan for a plan," said O. Sami Saydjari, chairman of the Professionals for Cyber Defense. "Given how bureaucracies work, they tend not to come up with bold plans in 60 days. The hard problems have yet to be grappled with." more

Reported Cyberattack Against Israel Only Ransomware to Regulatory Body, Electric Grid Not In Danger

Ransomware via a phishing attack was sent to Israel Electric Authority, not the power grid, as was heavily reported in mainstream media today. According to a cyber analyst in Israel (Eyal Sela) the media reporting so far is misleading with regards to the context around the incident, reports Robert M. Lee of SANS Institute. more

Sophisticated Maleware Found Aimed to Target Energy Companies

"The threat uses sophisticated techniques to evade detection and prepares the ground for more malware components," Lucian Constantin reporting in CIO: "Security researchers have discovered a new malware threat that goes to great lengths to remain undetected while targeting energy companies." more

Over Half of Critical Infrastructure Providers Report Politically Motivated Cyber Attacks

A recent study released today suggests 53 percent of critical infrastructure providers have experienced what they perceived as politically motivated cyber attacks. According to Symantec's 2010 Critical Information Infrastructure Protection (CIP) Survey, participants claimed to have experienced such an attack on an average of 10 times in the past five years, incurring an average cost of $850,000 during a period of five years to their businesses. more

U.S. Senate Modernizes Cyber-Crime Laws

The U.S. Senate has passed legislation to modernize the nation's computer crime laws and give prosecutors more leeway in pursuing cyber crooks, reports Brian Krebs of The Washington Post. "Under current federal cyber-crime laws prosecutors must show that the illegal activity caused at least $5,000 in damages before they can bring charges for unauthorized access to a computer. Under the bill approved today, that threshold would be eliminated." more

WHOIS Database Download: Proactive Defense Against the Rising Tide of BEC Fraud

How many times have you heard that humans are the weakest link in cybersecurity? The headlines have proven that over and over again. In particular, business email compromise or BEC (also known as email account compromise or EAC) scams, which typically target an employee with access to the financial resources of his company -- this could be a C-level executive or any high-ranking officer -- for fraud are still on a constant uphill trend. more