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Researchers Detail Apple's Recent Zero-Click Shortcuts Vulnerability

Researchers Detail Apple's Recent Zero-Click Shortcuts Vulnerability

Feb 23, 2024 Data Privacy / iOS Security
Details have emerged about a now-patched high-severity security flaw in Apple's Shortcuts app that could permit a shortcut to access sensitive information on the device without users' consent. The vulnerability, tracked as  CVE-2024-23204  (CVSS score: 7.5), was addressed by Apple on January 22, 2024, with the release of  iOS 17.3, iPadOS 17.3 ,  macOS Sonoma 14.3 , and  watchOS 10.3 . "A shortcut may be able to use sensitive data with certain actions without prompting the user," the iPhone maker said in an advisory, stating it was fixed with "additional permissions checks." Apple Shortcuts is a  scripting application  that allows users to create personalized workflows (aka macros) for  executing   specific tasks  on their devices. It comes installed by default on iOS, iPadOS, macOS, and watchOS operating systems. Bitdefender security researcher Jubaer Alnazi Jabin, who discovered and reporting the Shortcuts bug, said it could be weaponized to create a
FTC Slams Avast with $16.5 Million Fine for Selling Users' Browsing Data

FTC Slams Avast with $16.5 Million Fine for Selling Users' Browsing Data

Feb 23, 2024 Privacy / Regulatory Compliance
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has hit antivirus vendor Avast with a $16.5 million fine over charges that the firm sold users' browsing data to advertisers after claiming its products would block online tracking. In addition, the company has been banned from selling or licensing any web browsing data for advertising purposes. It will also have to notify users whose browsing data was sold to third parties without their consent. The FTC, in its complaint,  said  Avast "unfairly collected consumers' browsing information through the company's browser extensions and antivirus software, stored it indefinitely, and sold it without adequate notice and without consumer consent." It also accused the U.K.-based company of deceiving users by claiming that the software would block third-party tracking and protect users' privacy, but failing to inform them that it would sell their "detailed, re-identifiable browsing data" to more than 100 third-partie
Apple Unveils PQ3 Protocol - Post-Quantum Encryption for iMessage

Apple Unveils PQ3 Protocol - Post-Quantum Encryption for iMessage

Feb 22, 2024 Quantum Computing / Encryption
Apple has announced a new post-quantum cryptographic protocol called  PQ3  that it said will be integrated into iMessage to secure the messaging platform against future attacks arising from the threat of a practical quantum computer. "With compromise-resilient encryption and extensive defenses against even highly sophisticated quantum attacks, PQ3 is the first messaging protocol to reach what we call Level 3 security — providing protocol protections that surpass those in all other widely deployed messaging apps," Apple  said . The iPhone maker described the protocol as "groundbreaking," "state-of-the-art," and as having the "strongest security properties" of any cryptographic protocol deployed at scale. PQ3 is the latest security guardrail erected by Apple in iMessage after it switched from  RSA  to Elliptic Curve cryptography ( ECC ), and by protecting encryption keys on devices with the Secure Enclave in 2019. While the current algorithms
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The Critical State of AI in the Cloud

websiteWiz.ioArtificial Intelligence / Cloud Security
Wiz Research reveals the explosive growth of AI adoption and what 150,000+ cloud accounts revealed about the AI surge.
Cybercriminals Weaponizing Open-Source SSH-Snake Tool for Network Attacks

Cybercriminals Weaponizing Open-Source SSH-Snake Tool for Network Attacks

Feb 22, 2024 Network Security / Penetration Testing
A recently open-sourced network mapping tool called  SSH-Snake  has been repurposed by threat actors to conduct malicious activities. "SSH-Snake is a self-modifying worm that leverages SSH credentials discovered on a compromised system to start spreading itself throughout the network," Sysdig researcher Miguel Hern├índez  said . "The worm automatically searches through known credential locations and shell history files to determine its next move." SSH-Snake was first released on GitHub in early January 2024, and is described by its developer as a "powerful tool" to carry out  automatic network traversal  using SSH private keys discovered on systems. In doing so, it creates a comprehensive map of a network and its dependencies, helping determine the extent to which a network can be compromised using SSH and SSH private keys starting from a particular host. It also supports  resolution of domains  which have multiple IPv4 addresses. "It's comp
A New Age of Hacktivism

A New Age of Hacktivism

Feb 22, 2024 Hacktivism / Information Warfare
In the past 2 years, we have observed a significant surge in hacktivism activity due to ongoing wars and geopolitical conflicts in various regions. Since the war against Ukraine began, we have witnessed a notable mobilization of non-state and state-backed actors alike, forming new groups or joining existing hacker collectives.  We understand hacktivism as a form of computer hacking that is done to further the goals of political or social  activism 1 . While  activism  describes a normal, non-disruptive use of the Internet in order to support a specific cause (online petitions, fundraising, coordinating activities),  hacktivism  includes operations that use hacking techniques with the intent to disrupt but not to cause serious harm (e.g., data theft, website defacements, redirects, Denial-of-Service attacks). Cyber operations that inherit a willingness or intent to cause harm to physical property, severe economic damage or loss of life would be referred to as  cyberterrorism, 2, 3  Th
Russian Government Software Backdoored to Deploy Konni RAT Malware

Russian Government Software Backdoored to Deploy Konni RAT Malware

Feb 22, 2024 Malware / Cyber Espionage
An installer for a tool likely used by the Russian Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MID) has been backdoored to deliver a remote access trojan called  Konni RAT  (aka  UpDog ). The findings come from German cybersecurity company DCSO, which linked the activity as originating from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)-nexus actors targeting Russia. The Konni (aka Opal Sleet, Osmium, or  TA406 ) activity cluster has an established pattern of deploying Konni RAT against Russian entities, with the threat actor also linked to  attacks directed against MID  at least since October 2021. In November 2023, Fortinet FortiGuard Labs  revealed  the use of Russian-language Microsoft Word documents to deliver malware capable of harvesting sensitive information from compromised Windows hosts. DCSO said the packaging of Konni RAT within software installers is a technique  previously adopted  by the group in October 2023, when it was found to leverage a backd
Cybersecurity Tactics FinServ Institutions Can Bank On in 2024

Cybersecurity Tactics FinServ Institutions Can Bank On in 2024

Feb 14, 2024Financial Security / Cyber Threats
The landscape of cybersecurity in financial services is undergoing a rapid transformation. Cybercriminals are exploiting advanced technologies and methodologies, making traditional security measures obsolete. The challenges are compounded for community banks that must safeguard sensitive financial data against the same level of sophisticated threats as larger institutions, but often with more limited resources. The FinServ Threat Landscape Recent trends show an alarming increase in sophisticated cyber-attacks. Cybercriminals now deploy advanced techniques like deep fake technology and AI-powered attacks, making it increasingly difficult for banks to differentiate between legitimate and malicious activities. These developments necessitate a shift towards more sophisticated and adaptive cybersecurity measures. Take these industry statistics, for example. Financial firms report 703 cyberattack attempts per week.1 On average, 270 attacks (entailing unauthorized access of data, appl
U.S. Offers $15 Million Bounty to Hunt Down LockBit Ransomware Leaders

U.S. Offers $15 Million Bounty to Hunt Down LockBit Ransomware Leaders

Feb 22, 2024 Ransomware / Cybercrime
The U.S. State Department has announced monetary rewards of up to $15 million for information that could lead to the identification of key leaders within the LockBit ransomware group and the arrest of any individual participating in the operation. "Since January 2020, LockBit actors have executed over 2,000 attacks against victims in the United States, and around the world, causing costly disruptions to operations and the destruction or exfiltration of sensitive information," the State Department  said . "More than $144 million in ransom payments have been made to recover from LockBit ransomware events." The development comes as a sweeping law enforcement operation led by the U.K. National Crime Agency (NCA)  disrupted  LockBit, a Russia-linked ransomware gang that has been active for more than four years, wreaking havoc on business and critical infrastructure entities around the world. Ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) operations like LockBit and others work by e
New Wi-Fi Vulnerabilities Expose Android and Linux Devices to Hackers

New Wi-Fi Vulnerabilities Expose Android and Linux Devices to Hackers

Feb 21, 2024 Network Security / Vulnerability
Cybersecurity researchers have identified two authentication bypass flaws in open-source Wi-Fi software found in Android, Linux, and ChromeOS devices that could trick users into joining a malicious clone of a legitimate network or allow an attacker to join a trusted network without a password. The vulnerabilities, tracked as CVE-2023-52160 and CVE-2023-52161, have been discovered following a security evaluation of  wpa_supplicant  and Intel's iNet Wireless Daemon ( IWD ), respectively. The flaws "allow attackers to trick victims into connecting to malicious clones of trusted networks and intercept their traffic, and join otherwise secure networks without needing the password," Top10VPN  said  in a new research conducted in collaboration with Mathy Vanhoef, who has previously uncovered Wi-Fi attacks like  KRACK ,  DragonBlood , and  TunnelCrack . CVE-2023-52161, in particular, permits an adversary to gain unauthorized access to a protected Wi-Fi network, exposing exis
Mustang Panda Targets Asia with Advanced PlugX Variant DOPLUGS

Mustang Panda Targets Asia with Advanced PlugX Variant DOPLUGS

Feb 21, 2024 Malware / Cyber Espionage
The China-linked threat actor known as Mustang Panda has targeted various Asian countries using a variant of the PlugX (aka Korplug) backdoor dubbed DOPLUGS. "The piece of customized PlugX malware is dissimilar to the general type of the PlugX malware that contains a completed backdoor command module, and that the former is only used for downloading the latter," Trend Micro researchers Sunny Lu and Pierre Lee  said  in a new technical write-up. Targets of DOPLUGS have been primarily located in Taiwan, and Vietnam, and to a lesser extent in Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, Mongolia, and even China. PlugX is a staple tool of  Mustang Panda , which is also tracked as BASIN, Bronze President, Camaro Dragon, Earth Preta, HoneyMyte, RedDelta, Red Lich, Stately Taurus, TA416, and TEMP.Hex. It's known to be active since at least 2012, although it first came to light in 2017. The threat actor's tradecraft entails carrying out well-forged spear-phishing campaigns that a
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