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Hacking & Security Posts - Page 14

Syrian Electronic Army claims successful hack of U.S. Central Command

Members of the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) hacker group reportedly compromised part of the United States Central Command network, launching the effort due to President Obama's "decision to attack Syria with electronic warfare."


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The group said it successfully gained access to central repositories, including a screenshot of unauthorized access to the network.


In a recent Tweet, here is what the group had to say:


Continue reading 'Syrian Electronic Army claims successful hack of U.S. Central Command' (full post)

Cancer scam e-mail installs Zeus malware on user PCs

A new spam hoax imitating a message from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) organization told recipients they have cancer, and is sent with the following subject line: "Important blood analysis result.


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The e-mail includes Zeus malware and has been sent to thousands of users, and anyone that downloads the attachment could lead to their PC being hijacked. After the attachment is unzipped and runs, an error screen appears and quickly disappears, with the downloader working to hijack the PC. Next, Microsoft Outlook passwords and other login credentials are stolen.


The e-mail reads:


"We have been sent a sample of your blood analysis for further research. During the complete blood count (CBC) we have revealed that white blood cells is very low, and unfortunately we have a suspicion of cancer."

Continue reading 'Cancer scam e-mail installs Zeus malware on user PCs' (full post)

Russian Kremlin gets slammed by 'powerful' cyber attack

The cyberwar between Russia and Ukraine is accelerating, and hackers recently brought down the Russian Kremlin and Central Back websites. Russian news sites also are being targeted, with RT saying the Anonymous Caucasus has taken credit for downing Russian Channel One.


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"A powerful cyberattack is underway on the (Kremlin) site," a Russian government spokesperson said. "A serious DDoS attack is currently underway, not only on the Kremlin site, but also a number of other Web portals."


According to a Tweet from Anonymous Russia:


Continue reading 'Russian Kremlin gets slammed by 'powerful' cyber attack' (full post)

Russian government blocks four opposition sites criticizing Putin

President Vladimir Putin's government has reportedly banned four websites operated by Kremlin opponents and critics. Opponent Alexei Navalny had his website blocked for Russian Internet users, along with online newspaper Grani, an opposition information website, and a radio station website (despite it being state-operated).


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The Russian government defended its actions by saying the websites helped organize "illegal" protests, according to reports in the region. Navalny is serving a two-month house arrest punishment because he violated five-year probation for an embezzlement-related charge.


Over the past two years, Putin has continually put the squeeze on media outlets located in his country - most recently, the editor of, a major Russian independent news site, resigned due to increased pressure from Moscow.

Continue reading 'Russian government blocks four opposition sites criticizing Putin' (full post)

McAfee makes Antivirus & Security free for Android and iOS

Intel-owned McAfee wants to keep mobile users more secure by offering its Antivirus & Security suite available to Apple iOS and Google Android users.


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There are plenty of free software products available designed for smartphones and tablets, but paid versions provide a more complete suite. The McAfee Labs collected 2.47 million Android malware samples in 2013, with 744,000 in Q4 alone.


"With India placed on the tip of mobile device explosion, there is an overwhelming need of adoption of security and privacy protection in our digital lives," said Jagdish Mahapatra, McAfee Managing Director in India, in a statement. "With free access to our award-winning mobile security product, Indian consumers will be empowered to access all the benefits of this connected world and enjoy a safe mobile life."


India is adopting smartphones faster than any other nation, with an estimated 185 million mobile Web browsers within the next three months.

Tax season leads to easy pickings for cybercriminals, scammers

Tax season 2014 is well underway, and while some of you likely have filed your taxes, most Americans are still digging through receipts, plugging away on spreadsheets, and hoping they file accurately to get some cash. Cybercrime levels spike during this period, as hackers and scammers prey on taxpayers frantic to try and file their taxes in peace.


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Identity theft and phishing are the top threats facing people this tax season, according to the Protect Yourself from Tax Season Identity Theft Scams document from the Center for Internet Security (CIS). Taxpayers need to be especially aware of e-mails and phone calls from people claiming to be from the IRS - and security experts need to be careful when opening e-mails, receiving phone calls, or receiving unsolicited correspondence.


If paper documents are no longer needed, they should be disposed of properly:


"One of the easiest ways to prevent the crime is by immediately shredding no-longer needed confidential documents," said Nancy Heaton, Fellowes Director of Global Marketing. "Fellowes offers a variety of shredders to suit every home office need that are perfect for tax season."

Stronger effort to try and keep your mobile device secure from attack

Businesses and users are increasingly relying on mobile technologies for a wide variety of tasks, and that has created a market with untapped potential for cybercriminals.


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As mobile banking, e-commerce, and similar sensitive activities rise further, it's important to adopt next-generation securities and understand the changing threat landscape, according to a recent study released by ThreatMetrix.


"Mobile device usage for e-commerce and banking will continue to rise and in order to prevent the associated risks, businesses must have the capabilities to effectively analyze mobile activity to detect returning authentic customers and device anomalies that indicate malicious behavior," said Mustafa Rassiwala, ThreatMetrix Director of Product Management, in a statement. "This includes differentiating between normal and jailbroken devices, as users with jailbroken devices are more likely to engage in criminal activity."

Continue reading 'Stronger effort to try and keep your mobile device secure from attack' (full post)

Target missed multiple warnings of major data breach underway

Popular retailer Target had multiple warnings that a credit and debit card breach was underway, but still didn't do enough to try and stop the problem.


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A recent series of interviews with more than 10 former Target employees, and a handful of people familiar with the attack indicate the company was aware of a data breach underway - and the alert system worked - signaling malware was installed before being publicly disclosed.


"I don't think it is about not paying attention to the technologies as much as fine tuning for actionable, relevant information from the technology," said Joe Schumacher, Neohapsis security consultant, in a statement to SCMagazine. "Many security systems (e.g. Web application firewall, log monitoring, intrusion Detection/Prevention Systems, etc.) correlate large amounts of data into a single repository. Unfortunately, a lot of companies and professional services stop here."


Six months before the successful data breach, Target installed a $1.7 million security platform, the report indicates.

Continue reading 'Target missed multiple warnings of major data breach underway' (full post)

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg calls Pres. Obama to complain about NSA

To show his displeasure over continued revelations of organized spying from the National Security Agency (NSA), Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently called President Obama to discuss the matter.


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This was the first time that Zuckerberg expressed his concerns directly with Obama, while Facebook, Google and other companies improve encryption and security efforts.


"The US government should be the champion for the Internet, not a threat," Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook blog post. "They need to be much more transparent about what they're doing, or otherwise people will believe the worst. I've called President Obama to express my frustration over the damage the government is creating for all of our future. Unfortunately, it seems like it will take a very long time for true full reform."

Continue reading 'Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg calls Pres. Obama to complain about NSA' (full post)

NSA denies posing as Facebook to compromise user HDDs

Of all the spying programs revealed by former IT contractor Edward Snowden, the National Security Agency (NSA) was quick to deny exploiting users by impersonating Facebook.


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Shortly after reports surfaced accusing the NSA of mimicking a Facebook server to help infect user PCs, users were upset - and the NSA wanted to offer a public statement.


"Recent media reports that allege NSA has infected millions of computers around the world with malware, and that NSA is impersonating U.S. social media or other websites, are inaccurate," the NSA said via its Public Affairs Office. "NSA uses its technical capabilities only to support lawful and appropriate foreign intelligence operations, all of which must be carried out in strict accordance with its authorities."

Continue reading 'NSA denies posing as Facebook to compromise user HDDs' (full post)

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