Malware / Featured Blogs

I Don't Give Damn About My Bad Reputation - Joan Jett

Two friends of mine wrote pieces today about reputation, one about email, the other about real-life stuff. I think they are strangely, tangentially yet inextricably linked. Laura Atkins, email specialist and part-time meteorologist at Word to the Wise aggregated a series of posts about a storm gathering on the email front. Receivers and filter-makers are up in arms about the crappy mail streams they see coming to them from ESPs, email service companies providing sending services for clients of various pedigrees. more»

Cyber Terrorism Is a Real Threat, and for the First Time Both Russia and the US Acknowledge It

Eugene Kaspersky, CEO and co-founder of Internet security giant Kaspersky Lab said last week that "terrorists could build a botnet that could bring down the entire Internet structure". Mr. Kaspersky ended his speech with the statement that "a global cyber police force, and global cooperation between law enforcement agencies and governments is needed". This goes very much in accordance with some of the conclusions in the Cyberspace Policy Review more»

Online Drug Traffic and Registrar Policy

Last month I published an article called "What's Driving Spam and Domain Fraud? Illicit Drug Traffic" which explained how the many of the troublesome online crime issues are related to the online sale of narcotics and dodgy pharmaceuticals. Since this article was published we have witnessed one of the largest international law enforcement efforts against online drug traffic (Operation Pangea II)... more»

Email's Not Dead, Neither is Spam

Over the past few years, we have seen a plethora of over-hyped articles in the popular press and blogosphere crowing wrong-headedly about how 'email is dead'. Social networks like Facebook and Twitter, new and as-yet unproven technologies are the supposed death-knell for our old reliable friend, e-mail. I wrote about the rumours of email's death being exaggerated back in 2007 in response to such inanity. Since then, we've seen such a cornucopia of silliness of the 'Such & such is killing email' variety that Mark Brownlow compiled a bunch of articles, and their rebuttals at his excellent site... more»

China: Is It Our Cyber Defense Red Herring?

There are thousands of articles perpetuating the claim that China is out to get us on the Internet. And yet, all these discussions are begging the question, is it China attacking? Also, are they even the "usual suspects"?
While I can point to real facts of China making active use of information warfare, cyber warfare, or whatever else you choose to call it (such as the release of 0 days being patched by Microsoft and originally reported by the Taiwanese government, search Microsoft's site), I can also point to Germany (intelligence Trojan horse), the US (The Farewell Dossier) and other countries such as North Korea (without much detail, so questioned)... more»

How Do You Do Secure Bank Transactions on the Internet?

Banks love it when their customers do their transactions on line, since it is so much cheaper than when they use a bank-provided ATM, a phone call center, or, perish forbid, a live human teller. Customers like it too, since bank web sites are usually open 24/7, there's no line and no need to find a parking place. Unfortunately, crooks like on line banking too, since it offers the possibility of stealing lots of money. How can banks make their on line transactions more secure? more»

The Story of Conficker and the Industry Response

On November 2, 2009, Microsoft released its seventh edition of the Security and Intelligence Report (SIR). The SIR provides an in-depth perspective on the changing threat landscape including software vulnerability disclosures and exploits, malicious software (malware), and potentially unwanted software. Using data derived from hundreds of millions of Windows computers, and some of the busiest online services on the Internet, this report also provides a detailed analysis of the threat landscape and the changing face of threats and countermeasures and includes updated data on privacy and breach notifications. The following is an excerpt from the SIR, pp 29-32, about the Conficker worm and the industry response that showed an incredible amount of collaboration across vendors. more»

Are Phishing and Malware Separate Threats?

Phishing is when bad guys try to impersonate a trusted organization, so they can steal your credentials. Typically they'll send you a fake e-mail that appears to be from a bank, with a link to a fake website that also looks like the bank. Malware offers another more insidious way to steal your credentials, by running unwanted code on your computer... I like VeriSign's characterization of this kind of malware as an insecure endpoint, the PC which is the endpoint of the conversation with the bank isn't actually under the control of the person who's using it. more»

Canadian Spam Law Update

As you may know, there are two laws currently being discussed in Canadian legislative assemblies: Senate Bill S-220, a private member’s bill with private right of action and criminal remedies; Parliamentary Bill C-27, tabled by the government, with private right of action, coordination between various enforcement agencies... more»

A Few More Thoughts on Email Authentication… errr… Trust

Mike Hammer's thoughtful article, A Few Thoughts on the Future of Email Authentication, should trigger thoughtfulness in the rest of us. Email abuse has been around a long time. Anti-abuse efforts have too. Yet global abuse traffic has grown into the 90+% range, with no hint of trending downward. The best we hear about current effectiveness is for last-hop filtering, if you have the money, staff and skills to apply to the problem... more»