Cybercrime / Featured Blogs

The Emotional Cost of Cybercrime

We know more and more about the financial cost of cybercrime, but there has been very little work on its emotional cost. David Modic and I decided to investigate. We wanted to empirically test whether there are emotional repercussions to becoming a victim of fraud (Yes, there are). We wanted to compare emotional and financial impact across different categories of fraud and establish a ranking list (And we did). more»

Exploiting Video Console Chat for Cybecrime or Terrorism

A couple of days ago there was a lot of interest in how terrorists may have been using chat features of popular video console platforms (e.g. PS4, XBox One) to secretly communicate and plan their attacks. Several journalists on tight deadlines reached out to me for insight in to threat. Here are some technical snippets on the topic that may be useful for future reference. more»

ICANN Compliance Lends a Hand to a Violent Criminal While Trashing a Legitimate Business

Imagine a California non-profit corporation providing material assistance to a criminal wanting to do you physical and financial harm. Then, imagine that corporation is ICANN. Imagine no longer, because that is precisely what the ICANN Compliance department managed to pull off this week, in an all-too-common demonstration of the havoc they can cause by sheer ineptitude, without apology or concern. This is the situation which crossed my desk this week. more»

The Cyber Security Ecosystem: Collaborate or Collaborate - It's Your Choice

As cyber security as a field has grown in scope and influence, it has effectively become an 'ecosystem' of multiple players, all of whom either participate in or influence the way the field develops and/or operates. It's increasingly evident that, more than ever, it is crucial for those players to collaborate and work together to enhance the security posture of communities, nations and the globe. more»

Whither Passwords

The primary means of authentication on the Internet is the password -- a half-century old, shared secret mechanism that is difficult to use (especially on mobile devices) and has acknowledged security flaws including attacks at scale. Even so, passwords remain the most prevalent form of authentication with efforts to enhance security typically relying on "bolt on" solutions that increase user friction. more»

World Body Declares Cyber Security Top Issue

Sovereign nations around the globe have clearly defined borders, but as attendees were shown at a UN Conference several years ago, cybercrime is a borderless phenomenon. In 2011 Norton Security released statistics that showed that every 14 seconds an adult is a victim of cybercrime and the numbers are growing. As internet use grows, so does the amount and type of information streaming across the web. This information crosses transnational lines, public and private sectors. more»

Global Paradigms We Relied Upon Were Destroyed Overnight - How Prepared Are You for New Realities?

Unprecedented new Political and Cyber Security Threats are happening at a scale that has never been witnessed before. These threats are large and malicious enough to take down nuclear programs, render oil refineries inoperable, and take billion-dollar websites offline (not to mention smaller ones). Recent events confirm that NO ONE IS IMMUNE. Despite the obvious warning signs, Internet business stakeholders the world over continue to act as if nothing has changed, and seem unaware that global paradigms have undergone a seismic shift almost overnight. more»

Understanding the Threat Landscape: Indicators of Compromise (IOCs)

I previously provided a brief overview of how Verisign iDefense characterizes threat actors and their motivations through adversarial analysis. Not only do security professionals need to be aware of the kinds of actors they are up against, but they should also be aware of the tactical data fundamentals associated with cyber-attacks most commonly referred to as indicators of compromise (IOCs). Understanding the different types of tactical IOCs can allow for quick detection of a breach... more»

Managing (in)Security Through Regulation: A Key Phase for Nation States

Not so long ago, the notion of introducing laws and other regulatory responses to address cyber security issues was regarded with significant hesitation by governments and policy makers. To some extent, this hesitation may well have stemmed from a general perception by those who do not work directly in the field that the world of cyber security is somewhat of a 'dark art'. More recently, however, there has been a substantial shift in this attitude, with proposals to regulate a range of cyber security related matters becoming increasingly numerous. more»

Understanding the Threat Landscape: Cyber-Attack Actors and Motivations

The threat landscape has rapidly expanded over the past few years, and shows no signs of contracting. With major establishments in both the public and private sectors falling victim to cyber-attacks, it is critical for organizations to identify the motivations, modus operandi (MO) and objectives of adversaries in order to adequately and effectively defend their networks. Understanding the taxonomy of cyber-attacks is the first step in preparing an organization against exposure to them. more»