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Australia Passes Anti-Encryption Bill—Here's Everything You Need To Know

Australia Passes Anti-Encryption Bill—Here's Everything You Need To Know
Dec 07, 2018
Australia's House of Representatives has finally passed the "Telecommunications Assistance and Access Bill 2018," also known as the Anti-Encryption Bill , on Thursday that would now allow law enforcement to force Google, Facebook, WhatsApp, Signal, and other tech giants to help them access encrypted communications. The Australian government argues the new legislation is important for national security and an essential tool to help law enforcement and security agencies fight serious offenses such as crime, terrorist attacks, drug trafficking, smuggling, and sexual exploitation of children. Since the bill had support from both major parties (the Coalition and Labor), the upper house could vote in support of the Assistance and Access Bill to make it law, which is expected to come into effect immediately during the next session of parliament in early 2019. Although the new legislation does not properly clarify specifics around the potential power that the Assistance

New Cold Boot Attack Unlocks Disk Encryption On Nearly All Modern PCs

New Cold Boot Attack Unlocks Disk Encryption On Nearly All Modern PCs
Sep 13, 2018
Security researchers have revealed a new attack to steal passwords, encryption keys and other sensitive information stored on most modern computers, even those with full disk encryption. The attack is a new variation of a traditional Cold Boot Attack , which is around since 2008 and lets attackers steal information that briefly remains in the memory (RAM) after the computer is shut down. However, to make the cold boot attacks less effective, most modern computers come bundled with a safeguard, created by the Trusted Computing Group (TCG), that overwrites the contents of the RAM when the power on the device is restored, preventing the data from being read. Now, researchers from Finnish cyber-security firm F-Secure figured out a new way to disable this overwrite security measure by physically manipulating the computer's firmware, potentially allowing attackers to recover sensitive data stored on the computer after a cold reboot in a matter of few minutes. "Cold boot

The Drop in Ransomware Attacks in 2024 and What it Means

The Drop in Ransomware Attacks in 2024 and What it Means
Apr 08, 2024Ransomware / Cybercrime
The  ransomware industry surged in 2023  as it saw an alarming 55.5% increase in victims worldwide, reaching a staggering 5,070.  But 2024 is starting off showing a very different picture.  While the numbers skyrocketed in Q4 2023 with 1309 cases, in Q1 2024, the ransomware industry was down to 1,048 cases. This is a 22% decrease in ransomware attacks compared to Q4 2023. Figure 1: Victims per quarter There could be several reasons for this significant drop.  Reason 1: The Law Enforcement Intervention Firstly, law enforcement has upped the ante in 2024 with actions against both LockBit and ALPHV. The LockBit Arrests In February, an international operation named "Operation Cronos" culminated in the arrest of at least three associates of the infamous LockBit ransomware syndicate in Poland and Ukraine.  Law enforcement from multiple countries collaborated to take down LockBit's infrastructure. This included seizing their dark web domains and gaining access to their backend sys

ROBOT Attack: 19-Year-Old Bleichenbacher Attack On Encrypted Web Reintroduced

ROBOT Attack: 19-Year-Old Bleichenbacher Attack On Encrypted Web Reintroduced
Dec 12, 2017
A 19-year-old vulnerability has been re-discovered in the RSA implementation from at least 8 different vendors—including F5, Citrix, and Cisco—that can give man-in-the-middle attackers access to encrypted messages. Dubbed ROBOT ( Return of Bleichenbacher's Oracle Attack ), the attack allows an attacker to perform RSA decryption and cryptographic operations using the private key configured on the vulnerable TLS servers. ROBOT attack is nothing but a couple of minor variations to the old Bleichenbacher attack on the RSA encryption protocol. First discovered in 1998 and named after Swiss cryptographer Daniel Bleichenbacher, the Bleichenbacher attack is a padding oracle attack on RSA-based PKCS#1 v1.5 encryption scheme used in SSLv2. Leveraging an adaptive chosen-ciphertext attack which occurred due to error messages by SSL servers for errors in the PKCS #1 1.5 padding, Bleichenbacher attack allows attackers to determine whether a decrypted message is correctly padded.

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Serious Crypto-Flaw Lets Hackers Recover Private RSA Keys Used in Billions of Devices

Serious Crypto-Flaw Lets Hackers Recover Private RSA Keys Used in Billions of Devices
Oct 17, 2017
If you think KRACK attack for WiFi is the worst vulnerability of this year, then hold on… ...we have got another one for you which is even worse. Microsoft, Google, Lenovo, HP and Fujitsu are warning their customers of a potentially serious vulnerability in widely used RSA cryptographic library produced by German semiconductor manufacturer Infineon Technologies. It's noteworthy that this crypto-related vulnerability (CVE-2017-15361) doesn't affect elliptic-curve cryptography and the encryption standard itself, rather it resides in the implementation of RSA key pair generation by Infineon's Trusted Platform Module (TPM). Infineon's Trusted Platform Module (TPM) is a widely-used, dedicated microcontroller designed to secure hardware by integrating cryptographic keys into devices and is used for secured crypto processes. This 5-year-old algorithmic vulnerability was discovered by security researchers at Masaryk University in the Czech Republic, who have relea

Explained — What's Up With the WhatsApp 'Backdoor' Story?

Explained — What's Up With the WhatsApp 'Backdoor' Story?
Jan 14, 2017
What is a backdoor? By definition: "Backdoor is a feature or defect of a computer system that allows surreptitious unauthorized access to data, " either the backdoor is in encryption algorithm, a server or in an implementation, and doesn't matter whether it has previously been used or not. Yesterday, we published a story based on findings reported by security researcher Tobias Boelter that suggests WhatsApp has a backdoor that "could allow" an attacker, and of course the company itself, to intercept your encrypted communication. The story involving the world's largest secure messaging platform that has over a billion users worldwide went viral in few hours, attracting reactions from security experts, WhatsApp team, and Open Whisper Systems, who partnered with Facebook to implement end-to-end encryption in WhatsApp. Note: I would request readers to read complete article before reaching out for a conclusion. And also, suggestions and opinions are

WhatsApp Backdoor allows Hackers to Intercept and Read Your Encrypted Messages

WhatsApp Backdoor allows Hackers to Intercept and Read Your Encrypted Messages
Jan 13, 2017
Important Update — Most Security Experts argued, " It's not a backdoor, rather it's a feature ," but none of them denied the fact that, if required, WhatsApp or a hacker can intercept your end-to-end encrypted chats. Read detailed explanation on arguments in my latest article. Most people believe that end-to-end encryption is the ultimate way to protect your secret communication from snooping, and it does, but it can be intercepted if not implemented correctly. After introducing " end-to-end encryption by default " last year, WhatsApp has become the world's largest secure messaging platform with over a billion users worldwide. But if you think your conversations are completely secure in a way that no one, not even Facebook, the company that owned WhatsApp, can intercept your messages then you are highly mistaken, just like most of us and it's not a new concept. Here's the kick: End-to-end encrypted messaging service, such as WhatsApp and Te

Researchers Demonstrated How NSA Broke Trillions of Encrypted Connections

Researchers Demonstrated How NSA Broke Trillions of Encrypted Connections
Oct 12, 2016
In the year 2014, we came to know about the NSA's ability to break Trillions of encrypted connections by exploiting common implementations of the Diffie-Hellman key exchange algorithm – thanks to classified documents leaked by ex-NSA employee Edward Snowden. At that time, computer scientists and senior cryptographers had presented the most plausible theory: Only a few prime numbers were commonly used by 92 percent of the top 1 Million Alexa HTTPS domains that might have fit well within the NSA's $11 Billion-per-year budget dedicated to "groundbreaking cryptanalytic capabilities." And now, researchers from University of Pennsylvania, INRIA, CNRS and Université de Lorraine have practically proved how the NSA broke the most widespread encryption used on the Internet. Diffie-Hellman key exchange (DHE) algorithm is a standard means of exchanging cryptographic keys over untrusted channels, which allows protocols such as HTTPS, SSH, VPN, SMTPS and IPsec to negotia

How to Crack Android Full Disk Encryption on Qualcomm Devices

How to Crack Android Full Disk Encryption on Qualcomm Devices
Jul 01, 2016
The heated battle between Apple and the FBI provoked a lot of talk about Encryption – the technology that has been used to keep all your bits and bytes as safe as possible. We can not say a lot about Apple's users, but Android users are at severe risk when it comes to encryption of their personal and sensitive data. Android's full-disk encryption can be cracked much more easily than expected with brute force attack and some patience, affecting potentially hundreds of millions of mobile devices. And the worst part: There may not be a full fix available for current Android handsets in the market. Google started implementing Full Disk Encryption on Android by default with Android 5.0 Lollipop. Full disk encryption (FDE) can prevent both hackers and even powerful law enforcement agencies from gaining unauthorized access to device's data. Android's disk encryption, in short, is the process of encoding all user's data on an Android device before ever wri

Would Encryption Backdoor Stop Paris-like Terror Attacks?

Would Encryption Backdoor Stop Paris-like Terror Attacks?
Nov 17, 2015
With 129 people killed in Paris terror attacks and dozens critically wounded, the law enforcement and intelligence officials are reviving their efforts to force companies to put some backdoors in encryption so that they can access your information. How did the Intelligence agencies fail to Intercept terrorist plans of these attacks? In the wake of the Paris terror attacks, Former CIA Director Michael Morell argued on TV that encrypted communication services may have aided the planning and plotting of the Paris attacks, blaming Edward Snowden and US companies for the attacks. Also Read:  NO, We Can't Blame Edward Snowden and Encryption for Terror Attacks With more Surveillance and Encryption backdoor, Is it possible that Friday's attacks could have been stopped before they began? Morell suggested that recalcitrant US companies should be forced to install government backdoors in their software and hand over encryption keys to the government, thinking that Encryption Backd

How NSA successfully Broke Trillions of Encrypted Connections

How NSA successfully Broke Trillions of Encrypted Connections
Oct 16, 2015
Yes, it seems like the mystery has been solved. We are aware of the United States National Security Agency (NSA) powers to break almost unbreakable encryption used on the Internet and intercept nearly Trillions of Internet connections – thanks to the revelations made by whistleblower Edward Snowden in 2013. However, what we are not aware of is exactly how did the NSA apparently intercept VPN connections, and decrypt SSH and HTTPS, allowing the agency to read hundreds of Millions of personal, private emails from persons around the globe. Also Read:  Top Best Password Managers . Now, computer scientists Alex Halderman and Nadia Heninger have presented a paper at the ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security that advances the most plausible theory as to how the NSA broke some of the most widespread encryption used on the Internet. According to the paper, the NSA has exploited common implementations of the Diffie-Hellman key exchange algorithm – a common

How to Crack RC4 Encryption in WPA-TKIP and TLS

How to Crack RC4 Encryption in WPA-TKIP and TLS
Jul 17, 2015
Security researchers have developed a more practical and feasible attack technique against the RC4 cryptographic algorithm that is still widely used to encrypt communications on the Internet. Despite being very old, RC4 (Rivest Cipher 4) is still the most widely used cryptographic cipher implemented in many popular protocols, including: SSL (Secure Socket Layer) TLS (Transport Layer Security) WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy) WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access) Microsoft's RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) BitTorrent and many more However, weaknesses in the algorithm have been found over the years, indicating that the RC4 needs to be wiped from the Internet. But, yet about 50% of all TLS traffic is currently protected using the RC4 encryption algorithm. Now, the situation got even worse, when two Belgian security researchers demonstrated a more practical attack against RC4, allowing an attacker to subsequently expose encrypted information in a much shorter amount of time t

Unbreakable Encryption inspired by Human Biology

Unbreakable Encryption inspired by Human Biology
Apr 08, 2014
When we talk about security, only one thing cames to our mind – ENCRYPTION . Encryption of our online messages, encryption of our emails, encryption of our voice call, encryption of our every personal data and communication that we have to keep away from cybercriminals and, if I am not wrong, also from government intelligence agencies, such as NSA and GCHQ. Eventually, secure encryption is mandatory need of our modern Internet, Mobile communication, financial transactions, network sensors, car keys, and many more. But, government agencies like NSA are trying hard to break every effort that we adopt to secure our personal and confidential data.  NSA is trying to develop a futuristic super computer called ' Quantum computer ' that could be capable of breaking almost every kind of Encryption used to protect banks, medical, business including top-secret information held by government around the world. NEARLY UNBREAKABLE ENCRYPTION So, need for new encryption schem

NSA will not stop spying on us, next move Quantum computer to break strongest Encryption

NSA will not stop spying on us, next move Quantum computer to break strongest Encryption
Jan 04, 2014
Image Credit: The guardian  If I say that  NSA (National Security Agency) will never stop spying on us then it won't be wrong. After the exposure of the large number of surveillance scandals including PRISM, DROPOUTJEEP, XKeyscore and many many more which are now publicly known as well as unknown, Will NSA ever stop Privacy  breach? Obviously ' NO' . That I can predict from another Snowden leak published by the Washington Post news website recently i.e. US National Security Agency (NSA) is trying to develop a futuristic super computer called ' Quantum computer'  that could be capable of breaking almost every kind of encryption on the computer used to protect banks, medical, business including top-secret information held by government around the world. The Project is specified as " Penetrating Hard Targets " in the document and is a part of $79.7 million research program. The Washington Post says that the research is being done at the University of Maryland
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