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Experts Warn of Privacy Risks Caused by Link Previews in Messaging Apps

Experts Warn of Privacy Risks Caused by Link Previews in Messaging Apps

October 26, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers over the weekend disclosed new security risks associated with link previews in popular messaging apps that cause the services to leak IP addresses, expose links sent via end-to-end encrypted chats, and even unnecessarily download gigabytes of data stealthily in the background. "Links shared in chats may contain private information intended only for the recipients," researchers Talal Haj Bakry and Tommy Mysk  said . "This could be bills, contracts, medical records, or anything that may be confidential." "Apps that rely on servers to generate link previews may be violating the privacy of their users by sending links shared in a private chat to their servers." Generating Link Previews at the Sender/Receiver Side Link previews are a common feature in most chat apps, making it easy to display a visual preview and a brief description of the shared link. Although apps like  Signal  and  Wire  give users the option to turn on/off l
New Framework Released to Protect Machine Learning Systems From Adversarial Attacks

New Framework Released to Protect Machine Learning Systems From Adversarial Attacks

October 23, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Microsoft, in collaboration with MITRE, IBM, NVIDIA, and Bosch, has released a  new open framework  that aims to help security analysts detect, respond to, and remediate adversarial attacks against machine learning (ML) systems. Called the  Adversarial ML Threat Matrix , the initiative is an attempt to organize the different techniques employed by malicious adversaries in subverting ML systems. Just as artificial intelligence (AI) and ML are being deployed in a wide variety of novel applications, threat actors can not only  abuse the technology  to power their malware but can also leverage it to  fool machine learning models  with poisoned datasets, thereby causing beneficial systems to make incorrect decisions, and pose a threat to stability and safety of AI applications. Indeed, ESET researchers last year found  Emotet  — a notorious  email-based malware  behind several botnet-driven spam campaigns and ransomware attacks — to be using ML to improve its targeting. Then earlier t
New Chrome 0-day Under Active Attacks – Update Your Browser Now

New Chrome 0-day Under Active Attacks – Update Your Browser Now

October 21, 2020Swati Khandelwal
Attention readers, if you are using Google Chrome browser on your Windows, Mac, or Linux computers, you need to update your web browsing software immediately to the latest version Google released earlier today. Google released Chrome version 86.0.4240.111 today to patch several security high-severity issues, including a zero-day vulnerability that has been exploited in the wild by attackers to hijack targeted computers. Tracked as CVE-2020-15999 , the actively exploited vulnerability is a type of memory-corruption flaw called heap buffer overflow in Freetype, a popular open source software development library for rendering fonts that comes packaged with Chrome. The vulnerability was discovered and reported by security researcher Sergei Glazunov of Google Project Zero on October 19 and is subject to a seven-day public disclosure deadline due to the flaw being under active exploitation. Glazunov also immediately reported the zero-day vulnerability to FreeType developers, who then
Popular Mobile Browsers Found Vulnerable To Address Bar Spoofing Attacks

Popular Mobile Browsers Found Vulnerable To Address Bar Spoofing Attacks

October 21, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Graphic for illustration Cybersecurity researchers on Tuesday  disclosed details  about an address bar spoofing vulnerability affecting multiple mobile browsers, such as Apple Safari and Opera Touch, leaving the door open for spear-phishing attacks and delivering malware. Other impacted browsers include UCWeb, Yandex Browser, Bolt Browser, and RITS Browser. The flaws were discovered by Pakistani security researcher Rafay Baloch in the summer of 2020 and jointly reported by Baloch and cybersecurity firm  Rapid7  in August before they were addressed by the browser makers over the past few weeks. UCWeb and Bolt Browser remain unpatched as yet, while Opera Mini is expected to receive a fix on November 11, 2020. The issue stems from using malicious executable JavaScript code in an arbitrary website to force the browser to update the address bar while the page is still loading to another address of the attacker's choice. Original PoC demo "The vulnerability occurs due to Saf
Windows GravityRAT Malware Now Also Targets macOS and Android Devices

Windows GravityRAT Malware Now Also Targets macOS and Android Devices

October 20, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A Windows-based remote access Trojan believed to be designed by Pakistani hacker groups to infiltrate computers and steal users' data has resurfaced after a two-year span with retooled capabilities to target Android and macOS devices. According to cybersecurity firm Kaspersky, the malware — dubbed " GravityRAT " — now masquerades as legitimate Android and macOS apps to capture device data, contact lists, e-mail addresses, and call and text logs and transmit them to an attacker-controlled server. First documented by the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) in August 2017 and subsequently by  Cisco Talos  in April 2018, GravityRAT has been known to target Indian entities and organizations via malware-laced Microsoft Office Word documents at least since 2015. Noting that the threat actor developed at least four different versions of the espionage tool, Cisco said, "the developer was clever enough to keep this infrastructure safe, and not have it blackl
Download Ultimate 'Security for Management' Presentation Template

Download Ultimate 'Security for Management' Presentation Template

October 20, 2020The Hacker News
There is a person in every organization that is the direct owner of breach protection. His or her task is to oversee and govern the process of design, build, maintain, and continuously enhance the security level of the organization. Title-wise, this person is most often either the CIO, CISO, or Directory of IT. For convenience, we'll refer to this individual as the CISO. This person is the subject-matter expert in understanding the standard set of active cyber risks, benchmarking to what degree the organization's exposure influences potential impact. They then take appropriate steps to ensure the major risks are addressed. On top of being engaged 24/7 in the organization's actual breach protection activity, the CISO has another critical task: to articulate the risks, potential impacts and appropriate steps to take to the company's management – or in other words, they must effectively translate security issues for non-security-savvy executives in a clear and busi
U.S. Charges 6 Russian Intelligence Officers Over Destructive Cyberattacks

U.S. Charges 6 Russian Intelligence Officers Over Destructive Cyberattacks

October 19, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
The US government on Monday formally charged six Russian intelligence officers for carrying out destructive malware attacks with an aim to disrupt and destabilize other nations and cause monetary losses. The individuals, who work for Unit 74455 of the Russian Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU), have been accused of perpetrating the "most disruptive and destructive series of computer attacks ever attributed to a single group," according to the Justice Department ( DoJ ). All the six men — Yuriy Sergeyevich Andrienko, Sergey Vladimirovich Detistov, Pavel Valeryevich Frolov, Anatoliy Sergeyevich Kovalev, Artem Valeryevich Ochichenko, and Petr Nikolayevich Pliskin — have been charged with seven counts of conspiracy to conduct computer fraud and abuse, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, damaging protected computers, and aggravated identity theft. "The object of the conspiracy was to deploy destructive malware and take other disruptive actions, for the strateg
Google Warns of Zero-Click Bluetooth Flaws in Linux-based Devices

Google Warns of Zero-Click Bluetooth Flaws in Linux-based Devices

October 16, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Google security researchers are warning of a new set of zero-click vulnerabilities in the Linux Bluetooth software stack that can allow a nearby unauthenticated, remote attacker to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges on vulnerable devices. According to security engineer  Andy Nguyen , the three flaws — collectively called BleedingTooth — reside in the open-source  BlueZ  protocol stack that offers support for many of the core Bluetooth layers and protocols for Linux-based systems such as laptops and IoT devices. The first and the most severe is a heap-based type confusion ( CVE-2020-12351 , CVSS score 8.3) affecting Linux kernel 4.8 and higher and is present in the Logical Link Control and Adaptation Protocol ( L2CAP ) of the Bluetooth standard, which provides multiplexing of data between different higher layer protocols. "A remote attacker in short distance knowing the victim's [Bluetooth device] address can send a malicious l2cap packet and cause denial of se
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