Malware / Recently Commented

Canadian Government Quietly Pursuing New ISP Code of Conduct

If approved, the code would technically be voluntary for Canadian ISPs, but the active involvement of government officials suggests that most large providers would feel pressured to participate. The move toward an ISP code of conduct would likely form part of a two-pronged strategy to combat malicious software that can lead to cybercrime, identity theft, and other harms. First, the long-delayed anti-spam legislation features new disclosure requirements for the installation of software along with tough penalties for non-compliance. more»

ICANN and Your Internet Abuse

In spite of the material we were presented with in Durban something has gone very wrong inside of ICANN Compliance. KnujOn has published a report which demonstrates that ICANN Compliance appears to completely collapse between September 2012 and December 2012. Following December 2012, ICANN seems to stop responding to or processing any complaints. It is around this time certain compliance employees start disappearing. This was not limited to the Sydney office as some would have us believe... more»

How to Stop the Spread of Malware? A Call for Action

On Webwereld an article was published following a new Kaspersky malware report Q1-2013. Nothing new was mentioned here. The Netherlands remains the number 3 as far as sending malware from Dutch servers is concerned. At the same time Kaspersky writes that The Netherlands is one of the most safe countries as far as infections go. So what is going on here? more»

The Spamhaus Distributed Denial of Service - How Big a Deal Was It?

If you haven't been reading the news of late, venerable anti-spam service Spamhaus has been the target of a sustained, record-setting Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attack over the past couple of weeks... Of course, bad guys are always mad at Spamhaus, and so they had a pretty robust set-up to begin with, but whoever was behind this attack was able to muster some huge resources, heretofore never seen in intensity, and it had some impact, on the Spamhaus website, and to a limited degree, on the behind-the-scenes services that Spamhaus uses to distribute their data to their customers. more»

Three New Cyber Security Threats in One Day

Internet crooks never cease to surprise me. The inventiveness in being bad is super. If these guys lent their thinking power to the economy, the economic crisis would be solved within a week. Today I ran into three brand new cyber security threats that were reported on. In one day. So I thought to share them with you. more»

Why Vint Cerf is Wrong

At the Internet Governance Forum in Baku, I made an intervention on behalf of NL IGF, reporting on the recommendations given by the participants of Workshop 87... I concluded that more regulatory and law enforcement bodies need to become part of the IGF discussions, as they are an integral part of governing the Internet from a safety and security perspective. Mr. Cerf responded with a one-liner: "I can't help observing, if we keep the regulatories confused, maybe they will leave us alone". more»

Lessons Behind the Microsoft Takedown

The Microsoft action against, a Chinese company, started with the news that computers were infected during the production phase. Stepping away from the controversy surrounding the approach, there are important lessons that cyber security officials and upper management, deciding on the level of and budget for cyber security in organisations should learn and take into account. I'm writing this contribution from a premise: China uses the fact that most IT devices are built in China to its advantage. Allow me to start with an account from personal memory to set the stage. more»

Report On National Online Cybercrime and Online Threats Reporting Centres

Today I released a report on 'National cyber crime and online threats reporting centres. A study into national and international cooperation'. Mitigating online threats and the subsequent enforcing of violations of laws often involves many different organisations and countries. Many countries are presently engaged in erecting national centres aimed at reporting cyber crime, spam or botnet mitigation. more»

Eugene Kaspersky: World Needs International Agreements On Cyber-Weapons

Eugene Kaspersky has warned global leaders that the world needs international agreements about cyber-weapons in the same way as it needs agreements about nuclear or biological weaponry. The chairman and chief executive officer of Kaspersky Lab, warned delegates at CeBIT Australia that cyber-warfare and terrorism was the number one internet threat facing the world today. He said the Stuxnet industrial virus had demonstrated that cyber-weapons were capable of damaging physical infrastructure, and were "a thousand times cheaper" to develop than conventional weaponry. more»

Spam from Mobile Networks? Who Woulda Thought…

Mobile networks aren't usually thought of as sources of spam, but a quick look at some of the resources that track spam reveals they actually are. This is counter intuitive at first glance because when most people think of mobile they think of smartphones, and those aren't known to be sources of spam (at least not yet). What's really going on is PCs connected to mobile networks with air cards, or tethered with a smartphone where it's permissible, are the culprits more»

Mac Hit by Another Wave of Malware… Users in Denial?

In case you haven't been watching cyber news recently, last week various security researchers published that Macs were infected by the Flashback Trojan and that the total number of infections worldwide was 600,000. This number was published by a couple of blogs. I debated writing about this topic since we had a previous Mac outbreak last year that initially spiked up, caused Apple to go into denial about the affair before issuing a fix, and then the malware kind of went away. Will this follow the same pattern? more»

Global Payments Breach Confirmation

This morning, Global Payments held a conference call with investors and analysts covering their earlier breach announcement and projected earnings. Global Payments had also released an update advisory yesterday stating that "the company believes that the affected portion of its processing system is confined to North America and less than 1,500,000 card numbers have been exported" and that only Track 2 card data may have been stolen. more»

Most Abusive Domain Registrations are Preventable

As the WHOIS debate rages and the Top-Level Domain (TLD) space prepares to scale up the problem of rogue domain registration persists. These are set to be topics of discussion in Costa Rica. While the ICANN contract requires verification, in practice this has been dismissed as impossible. However, in reviewing nearly one million spammed domain registrations from 2011 KnujOn has found upwards of 90% of the purely abusive registrations could have been blocked. more»

The Top 3 Emerging Threats on the Internet

Last week at RSA, Bruce Schneier gave a talk on the top 3 emerging threats on the Internet. Whereas we in the security field usually talk about spam, malware and cyber crime, he talked about three meta-trends that all have the potential to be more dangerous than the cybercriminals. Here are my notes. more»

Feds Ask for DNSChanger Deadline Extension As Millions of PCs Could Be Cut Off from the Web

Brian Krebs reporting in Krebs on Security: "Millions of computers infected with the stealthy and tenacious DNSChanger Trojan may be spared a planned disconnection from the Internet early next month if a New York court approves a new request by the U.S. government. Meanwhile, six men accused of managing and profiting from the huge collection of hacked PCs are expected to soon be extradited from their native Estonia to face charges in the United States." more»