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TikTok Assures U.S. Lawmakers it's Working to Safeguard User Data From Chinese Staff

TikTok Assures U.S. Lawmakers it's Working to Safeguard User Data From Chinese Staff

July 01, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Following heightened worries that U.S. users' data had been accessed by TikTok engineers in China between September 2021 and January 2022, the company sought to assuage U.S. lawmakers that it's taking steps to "strengthen data security." The admission that some China-based employees can access information from U.S. users came in a letter sent to nine senators, which further noted that the procedure requires the individuals to clear numerous internal security protocols. The contents of the letter, first  reported  by The New York Times, shares more details about TikTok's plans to address data security concerns through a multi-pronged initiative codenamed "Project Texas." "Employees outside the U.S., including China-based employees, can have access to TikTok U.S. user data subject to a series of robust cybersecurity controls and authorization approval protocols overseen by our U.S.-based security team," TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew wrote in the m
Microsoft Warns About Evolving Capabilities of Toll Fraud Android Malware Apps

Microsoft Warns About Evolving Capabilities of Toll Fraud Android Malware Apps

July 01, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Microsoft has detailed the evolving capabilities of toll fraud malware apps on Android, pointing out its "complex multi-step attack flow" and an improved mechanism to evade security analysis. Toll fraud belongs to a category of billing fraud wherein malicious mobile applications come with hidden subscription fees, roping in unsuspecting users to premium content without their knowledge or consent. It's also different from other  fleeceware threats  in that the malicious functions are only carried out when a compromised device is connected to one of its target network operators. "It also, by default, uses cellular connection for its activities and forces devices to connect to the mobile network even if a Wi-Fi connection is available," Dimitrios Valsamaras and Sang Shin Jung of the Microsoft 365 Defender Research Team  said  in an exhaustive analysis. "Once the connection to a target network is confirmed, it stealthily initiates a fraudulent subscription
Google Improves Its Password Manager to Boost Security Across All Platforms

Google Improves Its Password Manager to Boost Security Across All Platforms

July 01, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Google on Thursday announced a slew of improvements to its  password manager  service aimed at creating a more consistent look and feel across different platforms. Central to the changes is a "simplified and unified management experience that's the same in Chrome and Android settings," Ali Sarraf, Google Chrome product manager,  said  in a blog post. The updates are also expected to automatically group multiple passwords for the same sites as well as introduce an option to manually add passwords. Although Google appears to be not ready yet to make Password Manager as a standalone app, users on Android can now add a shortcut to it on the homescreen. In a related change on iOS, should users opt for Chrome as the  default autofill provider , Password Manager now comes with the ability to generate unique, strong passwords. The built-in Password Checkup feature on Android is receiving an upgrade of its own too. Beyond checking for hacked credentials, it can further hig
New 'SessionManager' Backdoor Targeting Microsoft IIS Servers in the Wild

New 'SessionManager' Backdoor Targeting Microsoft IIS Servers in the Wild

July 01, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A newly discovered malware has been put to use in the wild at least since March 2021 to backdoor Microsoft Exchange servers belonging to a wide range of entities worldwide, with infections lingering in 20 organizations as of June 2022. Dubbed  SessionManager , the malicious tool masquerades as a module for Internet Information Services ( IIS ), a web server software for Windows systems, after exploiting one of the ProxyLogon flaws within Exchange servers.  Targets included 24 distinct NGOs, government, military, and industrial organizations spanning Africa, South America, Asia, Europe, Russia and the Middle East. A total of 34 servers have been compromised by a SessionManager variant to date. This is far from the first time the technique has been  observed in real-world attacks . The use of a rogue IIS module as a means to distribute stealthy implants has its echoes in an Outlook credential stealer called  Owowa  that came to light in December 2021. "Dropping an IIS module a
Solving the indirect vulnerability enigma - fixing indirect vulnerabilities without breaking your dependency tree

Solving the indirect vulnerability enigma - fixing indirect vulnerabilities without breaking your dependency tree

July 01, 2022The Hacker News
Fixing indirect vulnerabilities is one of those complex, tedious and, quite frankly, boring tasks that no one really wants to touch. No one except for  Debricked , it seems. Sure, there are lots of ways to do it manually, but can it be done automatically with minimal risk of breaking changes? The Debricked team decided to find out.  A forest full of fragile trees So, where do you even start? Firstly, there needs to be a way to fix the vulnerability, which, for indirect dependencies, is no walk in the park. Secondly, it needs to be done in a safe way, or, without anything breaking.  You see, indirect dependencies are introduced deep down the dependency tree and it's very tricky to get to the exact version you want. As Debricked's Head of R&D once put it, " You are turning the knobs by playing around with your direct dependencies and praying to Torvalds that the correct indirect packages are resolved. When Torvalds is in your favour, you have to sacrifice some cloud
Amazon Quietly Patches 'High Severity' Vulnerability in Android Photos App

Amazon Quietly Patches 'High Severity' Vulnerability in Android Photos App

July 01, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Amazon, in December 2021, patched a high severity vulnerability affecting its  Photos app  for Android that could have been exploited to steal a user's access tokens. "The Amazon access token is used to authenticate the user across multiple Amazon APIs, some of which contain personal data such as full name, email, and address," Checkmarx researchers João Morais and Pedro Umbelino  said . "Others, like the Amazon Drive API, allow an attacker full access to the user's files." The Israeli application security testing company reported the issue to Amazon on November 7, 2021, following which the tech giant rolled out a fix on December 18, 2021. The leak is the result of a misconfiguration in one of the app's components named "com.amazon.gallery.thor.app.activity.ThorViewActivity" that's defined in the  AndroidManifest.xml file  and which, when launched, initiates an HTTP request with a header containing the access token. In a nutshell, it
Microsoft Warns of Cryptomining Malware Campaign Targeting Linux Servers

Microsoft Warns of Cryptomining Malware Campaign Targeting Linux Servers

June 30, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A cloud threat actor group tracked as 8220 has updated its malware toolset to breach Linux servers with the goal of installing crypto miners as part of a long-running campaign. "The updates include the deployment of new versions of a crypto miner and an IRC bot," Microsoft Security Intelligence said in a series of tweets on Thursday. "The group has actively updated its techniques and payloads over the last year." 8220, active since early 2017 , is a Chinese-speaking, Monero-mining threat actor so named for its preference to communicate with command-and-control (C2) servers over port 8220. It's also the developer of a tool called whatMiner, which has been co-opted by the Rocke cybercrime group in their attacks. In July 2019, the Alibaba Cloud Security Team uncovered an extra shift in the adversary's tactics, noting its use of rootkits to hide the mining program. Two years later, the gang resurfaced with Tsunami IRC botnet variants and a custom "
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