Cybercrime

ESET’s Threat Trends Predictions 2014: The next battle for internet privacy, a new assault on Androids, and a new wave of hi-tech malware

The 2014 threat trends report from ESET’s global network of cybersecurity experts centers on three key trends, the first and foremost being digital privacy, the others being threats to mobile devices, and new, hi-tech malware targeting PCs and other devices in the home.

Malicious Firefox add-on turns thousands of PCs into botnet which “hunts” weak websites

A Firefox add-on has turned 12,500 users of the browser into a botnet which scours every page visited by infected users for vulnerabilities. The ‘Advanced Power’ add-on ensnared 12,500 PCs – and found 1,800 vulnerable websites for its unknown creators.

Small businesses are new target for criminals as attacks double, report warns

The assault by cybercriminals against big businesses continued this year -78% were attacked by outsiders, according to a report by Price Waterhouse Cooper. But small businesses – those with less than 50 employees – are rapidly becoming a target.

NSA saves world from plot to “remotely destroy” PCs, claims NSA director

An international plot which would have turned huge numbers of PCs into “bricks” by using deeply buried malware was foiled by the NSA, according to an interview given to CBS by NSA director Keith Alexander. The attack could have “taken down the U.S. economy”, an NSA official claimed.

All of Android’s top 100 apps have been hacked – and banking apps are now a prime target, report finds

All of the top 100 apps on Google’s Play store have been hacked, and hackers now specifically target financial apps, such as those used by banks – with 53% of Android banking apps having been cracked, according to a report by Arxan.

Reverse charges: How one man turned the tables on PC phone scammers

This week, UK IT worker and social engineering blogger Dale Pearson was targeted – with eight phone calls from a company claiming there was a fault on his PC – but Pearson had both the time and the equipment to fight back.

FBI hacker teams have watched through PC webcams “for years”, court hears

The FBI custom-designs malware to snare suspects, a court has heard, and has been able “for years” to watch suspects through PC webcams, a court has heard. The teams operate “like normal hackers” – and rely on phishing and other criminal techniques.

Phantom menace? A guide to APTs – and why most of us have little to fear from these ‘cyberweapons’

APTs – or Advanced Persistent Threats – are the most menacing cyber attack there is, some say. Built to be stealthy, they penetrate networks, steal secrets – and vanish. ‘Catching’ one was a little like finding Bigfoot – but the much-hyped threat wasn’t quite so scary up close…

Will car-hacking be the “next global cybercrime”? Senator’s letter inspires debate

As wireless technologies and electronic controls are increasingly built into cars, vehicles could become vulnerable to hackers – either stealing information, or injecting malware, a U.S. Senator warned – inspiring debate on how real this threat is.

Microsoft’s new crime-fighting super-team strikes blow against million-strong “zombie army”

Only weeks after Microsoft unveiled a global Cybercrime Center armed with new, hi-tech tools to combat crime, it announced it had carried out a global action leading to “significant disruption” of the Siferef botnet, a network controlling up to two million “zombie” PCs.

JP Morgan warns 465,000 cardholders of data leak after hackers breach defenses

Personal information for up to 465,000 customers of JP Morgan, Chase & Co. may be at risk after hackers breached its network in July, the bank has admitted. Some reports claim that hackers had access to unencrypted, private information.

Millions in Bitcoin stolen from Sheep dark market as user flees

One of the ‘dark marketplaces’ offering illegal and semi-legal services via the anonymized web browser Tor has shut down, according to reports – with a user fleeing with millions of dollars worth of Bitcoin.

Malware attack on Seattle hospital leaves 90,000 patients’ details exposed

Systems at Harborview Medical Center and University of Washington Medical Center were infected with malware in October after an employee opened an infected email. This put thousands of patients’ data at risk.

Most big businesses “still failing” to recognize cyber risks, survey finds

The survey found that just 14% of top firms even took cyber risks into account at board level, according to a survey from the UK’s Department for Business, Innovation & Skills. Only a quarter see cybersecurity as a top priority.

European Parliament switches off Wi-Fi after hacker breaks into politicians’ emails

The European Parliament has switched off its public Wi-Fi system after an anonymous hacker broke into the personal emails of several Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) from outside the building, using only a laptop.

Bitcoin heist nets cybercriminals $1 million after huge DDoS “smokescreen”

A large-scale “heist” targeting Bitcoin site BIPS led to the theft of $1 million in Bitcoin – the second such major attack this month. BIPS was blasted with a massive DDoS attack two days before the theft on November 15.

Popular horse-racing site hit by “aggressive” cyber attack – passwords leaked

A major British horse racing website has been hit by an “aggressive” and “malicious” cyber attack – and user details have leaked, including some passwords which the owners warn “could be deciphered.”

What becomes of the broken hearted? Dating website leaked 42 million usernames and passwords

Dating site Cupid Media left personal details and plain text passwords for 42 million users exposed after an attack earlier this year. The details included names, emails and birthdays for users of the dating service, according to reporter Brian Krebs.

Derivatives trader admits to “cyber intrusion” which leaked customer information

CME, described by Bloomberg as the world’s largest futures trader, said in a statement that “to date” there was no evidence that the unknown attackers had affected trades on CME Globex, but customer information had leaked.

More woes for BlackBerry after “serious” security bug alert

Embattled handset maker BlackBerry has faced another blow, after the company warned users of a security bug affecting the software used to link its BB10 handsets to PCs.

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