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Microsoft, FBI Flatten Monster Botnet
June 07, 2013
A coalition comprising Microsoft, the FBI, and financial-industry and tech firms has taken out more than 1,400 botnets that used the Citadel Trojan to steal victims' online banking information and information about their identities. Microsoft filed a civil suit last week against 82 alleged botnet operators and cut communications between the botnets and millions of infected PCs they controlled.
China Jumps the Gun on Cybersecurity Talks
June 06, 2013
This coming weekend's cybersecurity talks may have already started. China's state-run newspaper ran an article claiming that the government has "mountains of data" proving it has been the victim cyberespionage at the hands of the United States. The report precedes the upcoming landmark meeting between Chinese president Xi Jinping and President Obama; cybersecurity is expected to be a key talking point.
Your iPhone Could Be Poisoned by Its Charger
June 04, 2013
Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have developed a way to hack into iOS devices through a modified charger. Billy Lau, a research scientist at the institute, together with two Ph.D. students, will present a paper on it at Black Hat USA 2013. It took only 1 minute for an iOS device to be compromised after being plugged into a malicious charger.
A New Approach for Blocking Zero-Day Threats
May 18, 2013
Cybercriminals use zero-day and unpatched application vulnerabilities to install data-stealing malware on corporate endpoints because these are -- and will continue to be -- an issue with virtually all software applications. Zero-day exploits that take advantage of unknown vulnerabilities are the hardest to defend.
The Real Mozilla Stands Up to Firefox-Cloaked Spyware
May 02, 2013
Mozilla, the creator of the Firefox browser, has sent a cease-and-desist letter to Gamma International, a German company that sells spyware to governments and law enforcement agencies. The move was a reaction to the news that a booby-trapped Microsoft Word document -- sent out for upcoming Malaysian elections -- embeds a copy of Gamma's FinSpy spyware that masquerades as a Firefox executable.
Report: Criminals Put a Bull's-eye on Web Infrastructure
April 29, 2013
Cybercriminals have begun focusing their malicious endeavors on the sinew of the Internet to reap greater rewards. For months now, Net bandits have targeted key infrastructure elements -- from the domain-naming service to certificate-issuing authorities to hosting services -- in order to spread cash-producing malware. "They're going after the infrastructure of the Internet," said Dave Jevans, chairman of Marble Security.
Bing Tops Google in Malware-Ridden Search Results
April 13, 2013
Bing may be engaged in a "Scroogled" marketing campaign, but an 18-month study by an antivirus security firm shows that Microsoft's search engine may need to play some defense, thanks to results showing more malware-infected links popping up in its search results than for Google.
Yontoo Trojan Unleashes Adware Assault on Mac Browsers
March 21, 2013
New malware is making the rounds with Mac users in its sights: Yontoo.1 can download and install an adware browser plug-in to an infected system. Adware for Mac OS X has been increasing since the beginning of this year, according to Doctor Web, the antivirus company that identified Yontoo.1, but so far it is the most prominent of them all.
RIP Android: Google Loses Its Steve Jobs
March 18, 2013
Andy Rubin was Google's Steve Jobs, and with him now booted off the Android product, that platform in its current form will pass. It is kind of funny to see the spin on this, which suggests this was Andy's decision. Yeah right, and I'll be buying that bridge in Brooklyn shortly.
Hackers Escalate Reign of Malware Terror on Android
March 08, 2013
Android has become a mobile malware magnet, according to F-Secure. A whopping 79 percent of all mobile malware targeted the Google OS in 2012, based on a new report from the firm. That was up from 66.7 percent in 2011 and just 11.25 percent in 2010. The fourth quarter of 2012 was particularly bad, it said, with attacks on Android spiking to account for 96 percent of all mobile malware.
Hacks, Hijacks and Hunts for Chinese Data Thieves
February 25, 2013
Still smarting from a recent attack on its systems, Facebook started its week with a discovery by researchers at Bitdefender that an infected add-on at the Chrome Web Store was planting malware on its members' computers. The malware, among other things, was padding the Like counts on dummy Facebook pages.
Inside the Hunt for Chinese Hackers
February 23, 2013
A recent report by Mandiant, a U.S. information security firm, has added an important new chapter to the discussion about cybersecurity -- and put China on the defensive. In chronicling the massive, years-long espionage campaign conducted by the People's Liberation Army Unit 61398, the report implicates the Chinese government and military.
Despite Denials, China No Doubt Sponsored Hacks, Insists Mandiant
February 20, 2013
A study on Chinese hacking practices issued by U.S. security firm Mandiant sent shock waves Wednesday through the technology and business worlds. A large number of cyberattacks on American corporations, organizations and government agencies are coming from a building near Shanghai, the study found.
Joint Effort Snares Gang of Cyberthugs
February 14, 2013
Europol announced Wednesday the breakup of a gang of cybercriminals who allegedly ran a ransomware scheme to extract money from online users in 30 countries. Spanish police, working alongside Europol's European Cybercrime Center, made 11 arrests in an action dubbed "Operation Ransom."
Europol Cybercops Take Down Ransomware Ring
February 14, 2013
The European police agency, Europol, announced Wednesday that it had dismantled a Russian-led, Spain-based cybercrime organization. The organization reportedly extorted millions of euros across more than 30 countries, mostly in Europe. The group's plan was to convince Internet users to pay fines, supposedly to authorities, for trumped-up infractions.
Secret Review Gives Obama License to Cyberkill
February 05, 2013
President Obama can order a preemptive strike if there's credible evidence of a pending major cyberattack from abroad, a secret legal review reportedly has found. New policies will dictate how intelligence agencies can monitor remote computer networks elsewhere for signs of potential attacks on the U.S.
NYT Hack Shows Gaping Holes in Traditional Security Systems
February 04, 2013
After The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal revealed last week that their systems had been compromised by Chinese hackers, the Journal reported that the FBI has been probing attacks on U.S. media -- part of a long-running pattern by a "foreign entity" to compromise security at major U.S. companies -- for more than a year.
New York Times Exposes Chinese Hackathon
January 31, 2013
The New York Times reported on Thursday that it was the victim of a four-month cyberattack that originated in China. The intrusions may have been part of a shift by Chinese hackers to apply the same sophisticated infiltration techniques on foreign media that have been used in recent years to steal data from international corporations.
Taking the Java Bull by the Horns
January 31, 2013
The United States Department of Homeland Security Computer Emergency Readiness Team has recently been advising computer users to update or switch off Java in browsers. Oracle's Java is a programming language that's used in browser plug-ins. It's used by vendors to make applications function across operating systems.
Brace Yourself for the Post-PC Threat Era
January 28, 2013
It was inevitable. As computing has evolved, so has its nemesis: malware. "2012 is truly the year we entered the post-PC era as cybercriminals moved to embrace Android, social media platforms, and even Macs with their attacks," Trend Micro declared in its annual Security Roundup last week. A characteristic of the post-PC threat landscape is the accelerated growth of malware.
Oracle's Java Headache Worsens
January 24, 2013
For Oracle and its Java programming language, the hurt just keeps on coming. Fresh vulnerabilities have been discovered less than a week after Oracle updated Java to address two security flaws being exploited by hackers -- but wait, there's more. Net bandits launched a phishing campaign pushing bogus security updates for the software.
Saudi Blogger Won't Face Death on Apostasy Accusation
January 23, 2013
A court in Saudi Arabia reportedly has declined to hear the case of Raif Badawi, a liberal blogger who was accused of apostasy. Apostasy,defined as the abandonment of one's faith, is a particularly grievous charge in Islam. Had it been so inclined, the court that turned down the case could have sentenced Badawi to death. As it stands, Badawi's charge was referred to a lower court.

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