archives
November 2010

Stuxnet Code: Chicken Licken or Chicken Run?

…given the amount of detailed analysis that’s already available (and I mean substantial blocks of reverse-engineered code, not high-level analysis and code snippets and descriptions), I’m not sure that anyone with malicious intent and a smidgen of technical skill would need the original code…

ROFLing Around The Christmas Tree*

…conceptually there is a direct line of succession from this worm to the social engineering worm/Trojan hybrids of the early noughties. Clearly, the line continues through to the social network malware (real and memetic) of today…

Stuxnet Splits the Atom

…an article suggests that “Stuxnet was developed to improve the quality of enriched uranium, so that it no longer can be used for the production of atomic bombs.” It’s an interesting theory, and I’m certainly not going to say it’s wrong…

Fake Support: the War Drags On

After quite a few months of trying to raise public awareness of the problem of fake support cold-calling both here [and elsewhere, it's good to see other vendors also starting to publicize the issue. I've previously cited an article by Symantec's Orla Cox that describes one exchange of civilities with one of the scammers, and

IM to Spread Malware: the Butterfly Effect

This weekend, an unnamed worm forced Microsoft to temporarily suspend active links  in Live Messenger 2009, in order to prevent the aggressive worm from spreading further. This is quite a surprising measure, because worms spreading through Instant Messaging (IM) such as Skype, Yahoo! Messenger and Microsoft Live Messenger are not new at all! For example,

Vogon spam is even worse than the poetry

If you read my previous blogs about P2P/inbox-mediaone/traclickmedia spam offering the currently-defunct Limewire (though some sort of replacement has been promised), you'll be glad to know that not only have they caught up with the latest news, but are now offering an alternative that is cleaner, faster, friendlier and safer. Yeah, right… In fact, looking

Stuxnet Unravelled…

…Eric Chien … tells us that “Stuxnet requires the industrial control system to have frequency converter drives from at least one of two specific vendors…”

Support Scams: This Time It’s Personal

Speaking of the October 2010 ThreatSense report, which includes an article on fake support and AV… A few days ago I wrote an article about fake support scams, a topic I've addressed before for Security Week – Fake AV, Fake Support  -and here on the ESET blog. What was missing, I guess, was that extra edge

October ThreatSense Report

…ESET’s October ThreatSense report is available on the Threat Center page …

VPN, SSL, and HTTPS

In response to my recent cookie theft blog a reader asked the following questions: What is VPN, what is SSL and what is the significance of https? What precautions can we take if we need to do Internet banking from a public computer, Internet café for example? VPN, SSL and https are all about encryption.

Cookie Theft (SideJacking or Session Hijacking) for Normal People.

Yeah, usually these things are titled “for Dummies”, but you’re not a dummy if you don’t understand, you’re normal. This is related to the program “Firesheep” and I will attempt to make it very easy to understand the problem. The solution is a bit more complex. It all comes down to trust and discretion. Unfortunately

Let’s Pull the Wool Over Your Eyes

Recently a tool called “Firesheep” was released. Firesheep makes it so that virtually anyone can hijack Facebook, and some other accounts when they are being used on unsecured public wireless networks. Firesheep takes advantage of the fact that Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo, and scores of other companies really couldn’t care less about your privacy or

Why is Unsecured Wi-Fi So Risky?

I’m sure that at some point you have listened to the radio. A signal goes out and all radios in range can tune in to the broadcast. WI-FI is essentially a radio signal that transmits and receives data. The access point and your computer exchange information, but all computers with wireless capabilities can receive the

Dr. Zeus: the Bot in the Hat

…behaviour like this has been observed in other versions of Zeus. The really interesting discovery in this case is associated with the way in which these samples search for logical devices attached to an infected computer….

Firesheep, Idiocy, Ethics and the Law

This isn’t a highly technical post by any means, but in a follow up I will explain some basics for less technical users and provide some information on protection. Recently a Firefox extension called Firesheep was released. Firesheep makes account hijacking easy enough that highly unskilled users can do it. Here’s how it works. A

The AMTSO subscription model: a clarification

The AMTSO press release about its newly announced cheap subscription model, which I previously referred to here, has been misunderstood in some quarters. I therefore tried to clarify the issues in my latest Security Week article: Once More 'Round the AMTSO Wheel of Pain. The article is also linked from the ESET white papers page.

Stuxnet Paper Updated

…the “Stuxnet under the microscope” has been updated.today on the white papers page: details as following…

Virus Bulletin Seminar

Our friends at Virus Bulletin are hosting a seminar later this month … organized by the security-knowledgeable but vendor-agnostic magazine whose annual conference is one of the major highlights of an anti-malware researcher’s year.

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