Looking back at the first spam messages sent in the 1800s, Virus Bulletin editor Martijn Grooten said that in the 1980s spam was impolite, in the 1990s it was a nuisance, in the 2000s it was a threat but in the 2010s spam was apparently ‘solved.’
He said that statistics have proved that email spam was “something we could not keep up with no matter how good your spam filter is.”
Grooten said that spam “exists as people like to break the law” and the issue of dealing with unsolicited bulk email remains a challenge as solutions do not work.
He pointed to “solutions” such as only accepting email from people you have previously approved, calling this “unworkable as you would need global approval system, and some sort of PKI.”
Hackers are taking full advantage of the upcoming holiday season to prey on people looking to buy gifts online.
This was confirmed by Kaspersky Lab, who said people looking to buy gifts online should be extra careful, especially people in Italy, Germany, the US, Russia who seem to be ‘particularly at risk’.
Hackers are using well known e-commerce brands, spoofing their websites as they try to steal people’s credentials and other vital information.
They are mostly using Betabot, Panda, Gozi, Zeus, Chthonic, TinyNuke, Gootkit2, IcedID and SpyEye. Kaspersky Lab says so far it has spotted 9.2 million attempted attacks by the end of Q3, 2018, compared to 11.2 for the whole of 2017.
Elections Quebec is warning voters that fraudulent messages are going around indicating that today’s election has been postponed.
The agency took to Twitter Sunday evening, a little more than 12 hours before voters are supposed to head to the polls, to say that the election is most definitely not postponed and that people should disregard any automated calls that suggest otherwise.
Des appels automatisés véhiculeraient de l’info indiquant que les élections sont reportées. Il s’agit d’une fausse information. Les élections auront lieu comme prévu demain, le 1er octobre. Le site officiel pour toute info: https://t.co/bMhCHRYQeZ#polqc#assnat#QC2018
The infamous Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) is one of the most-dreaded sights for Windows users.
Adding insult to injury, a new malware is making the rounds that fakes a BSOD, and then tries to swindle victims into paying for tech support tools.
According to Malwarebytes, the malware, appropriately dubbed Troubleshooter, announces itself with a faux BSOD that appears to lock out the user. Then, a “troubleshooting wizard” pops up, masquerading as a Windows utility. It detects “issues” on the PC, and then recommends that the victim pony up $25 via PayPal to buy a package called Windows Defender Essentials to take care of them.
The malware disables shortcut keys, so that users can’t close the pop-up windows. It also takes a screenshot of the user’s desktop and sends it to a remote IP address. If a victim pays the $25, they are redirected to a “thank you” webpage and the malware is terminated. However, users can also fix the problem for free by rebooting the PC into Safe Mode and then removing the file.
A new malware masquerading as the infamous Blue Screen of Death tries to swindle victims into paying for tech support tools.
Amazon is offering a refund to customers who bought counterfeit eclipse glasses to watch the solar eclipse next week. The retail giant says the glasses may not come from a recommended manufacturer.
On Aug. 21, people will be flocking to parts of the United States to watch as the sun disappears behind the moon. The rare solar eclipse will span from South Carolina to Oregon and last up to three hours, according to NASA.
Many people have bought protective eyewear on Amazon, as you need the glasses in order to look directly up at the sky while the eclipse happens (or else you can permanently damage your eyes). However, Amazon has not been able to verify all of the glasses comply with industry standards and are from reputable sources. The company issued some customers refunds last week.
“Out of an abundance of caution and in the interests of our customers, we asked third-party sellers that were offering solar eclipse glasses to provide documentation to verify their products were compliant with relevant safety standards,” an Amazon spokesperson told Global News.
What glasses should you buy?
If you’re still looking for some protective eyewear (or need to replace yours), the American Astronomical Society has a list of reputable vendors of solar eclipse glasses.
According to NASA, the eye gear must have certification, with a “designated ISO 12312-2 international standard”. The company who created the product and its contact information should be clearly printed on the glasses.
ISO 12312-2:2015 applies to all afocal (plano power) products intended for direct observation of the sun, such as solar eclipse viewing.
With more than 1,200 breaches and a massive 3.4 billion records exposed already, 2017 is on pace to be yet another worst year on record for breach activity.
Risk Based Security’s Q1 2017 DataBreach QuickView Report found that in particular, the practice of emulating a trusted party and requesting copies of W-2 forms has clearly become a favorite money-making scheme for the first quarter.
“The trends that drove the extraordinary activity in 2016 are continuing unabated in 2017,” said Inga Goddijn, EVP at Risk Based Security. “We have seen the return of widespread phishing for W-2 details, large datasets continue to be offered for sale, and misconfigured databases remain a thorny problem for IT administrators.”
Targeting information useful for filing false tax returns is not a new practice and neither is phishing unsuspecting employees in order to obtain it; however, the trend came to prominence last year, when more than 60 organizations fell for the specialized phishing scam in Q1 of 2016. Known as business email compromise, or BEC, the practice generally involves sending an email impersonating a trusted colleague, business partner or C-suite executive, requesting either a funds transfer or personal information.
Another 2016 trend that continued into Q1 2017 is the sale of large datasets. The report found that one particular seller was especially active this past quarter, offering for sale various username and password combinations gathered from 11 different organizations and impacting a whopping 1.5 billion records in total.
“What is clear is that as long as organizations rely on the traditional username and password combination for authentication, datasets like these will continue to have value to malicious actors,” the report noted.
“In the most striking example of misconfiguration problems, River City Media LLC, an organization with a somewhat checkered reputation, accidentally exposed 1,374,159,612 records containing personal information as well as sensitive internal business documents in a faulty Rsync backup. Not only is this the largest misconfiguration incident on record, it is now the single largest breach disclosed through Q1 2017.”
With breach activity showing no signs of slowing down, it’s become more important than ever to understand the drivers behind data loss.
With more and more organisations wanting to learn about the EU General Data Protection Regulation, it’s been difficult for me to find the time to keep up to date with the month’s breaches and hacks.
When I started compiling April’s list, I hoped that there weren’t many breaches this month, but unfortunately I was wrong.
However, while this month’s list is long, there doesn’t seem to be as many records leaked as in previous months. I’m still searching deeper to find the total number of records affected, but at the moment we’re looking at fewer than 10 million.
Two tech companies who were victims of a $100 million payment scam have been revealed to be Facebook and Google.
According to an investigation by Fortune, Lithuanian Evaldas Rimasauskas allegedly forged email addresses, invoices, and corporate stamps in order to impersonate a large Asian-based manufacturer with whom the tech firms regularly did business.
Over two years, he is alleged to have convinced accounting departments at the two tech companies to make transfers worth tens of millions of dollars. By the time the firms figured out what was going on, Rimasauskas had coaxed out over $100 million in payments, which he promptly stashed in bank accounts across Eastern Europe.
Spokespeople for Google and Facebook this week confirmed that they were the victims in question. Facebook claimed that it “recovered the bulk of the funds shortly after the incident and has been cooperating with law enforcement in its investigation”, while a Google spokesperson said: “We detected this fraud against our vendor management team and promptly alerted the authorities. We recouped the funds and we’re pleased this matter is resolved.”
Mark James, IT security specialist at ESET, said: “It’s a fact in today’s digital world that there is always someone trying to scam you. We fight it, we delete it, we even highlight it and use it to teach others what to look out for, but there is one thing humans are good at and that’s adapting. Most spam or phishing attacks end up a failure, but that’s the nature of these types of attacks they don’t all have to succeed.
“For us to be safe we have to detect or block 100% of those attempts but they only need to get one right. If someone puts their mind to doing something there is a good chance they will succeed, whether that’s education, business or foul deeds. The good thing about the latter is most of the time people get caught. This particular plan involved forging email addresses, invoices, and corporate stamps in order to trick some big companies into believing they are dealing with the ‘right’ company and handing over thousands, it just goes to prove that all companies large and small can be scammed.”
Lee Munson, security researcher at Comparitech, said: “Phishing or, more appropriately in this case ‘CEO Fraud’, poses a huge problem to organizations of all sizes. While technical controls have a small part to play in reducing the likelihood of such an attack being successful, it is staff awareness training that is key here.
Fake Email phishing attack are hitting LinkedIn users via Mail and LinkedIn inbox’s and ask them to attach CV.
Since its looks like an original link, which come from official LinkedIn, its leads to many users to be victimized by this email phishing attack. It is decent to believe that beneficiaries of the false message would detect various cautioning signals when they open the correspondence in their email inbox.
Attackers have spammed out email messages posing as communications from LinkedIn, claiming that a company is “urgently seeking workers matching your qualifications in your region”.
The site to which the underlying messages indicated has as of now been brought down, yet you can make certain that the scammers have already set up new ones, and changed the connection in hence sent messages.
According to HELPNETSECURITY, the scammers are attempting to impersonate the well known employment-oriented social networking service. However cautious clients will instantly spot numerous things that indicate the email being fake:
the email sender address that has nothing to do with LinkedIn
the lack of certain design elements and the “unsubscribe” footer usually contained in LinkedIn emails
the email not addressing the recipient by name
a sense of urgency that the email is designed to create
March is coming to an end, which means it’s time for this month’s list of breaches and cyber attacks.
There have been a lot of data breaches this month, and that’s just considering the ones that I’ve been making a note of throughout the month.
I calculate the number of compromised records this month as 74,643,434. This number should be taken as an estimate and not the definitive number. The real number of compromised records is likely to be much higher.
Remember, this is the list of breaches and attacks that were discovered/announced this month, but did not necessarily take place this month.
It’s the shortest month of the year, but it has not been short of breaches or cyber attacks.
The list is the usual mix of ransomware attacks and careless employees causing data breaches.
Our US readers, however, will be well aware that tax day is fast approaching, so W-2 phishing is rife. Earlier this month, the IRS sent out an urgent alert warning employers that this W-2 phishing scam had spread beyond the corporate world to other sectors, including school districts, tribal organisations and non-profits.