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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: database security

Newly Patched SAP ASE Flaws Could Let Attackers Hack Database Servers

Newly Patched SAP ASE Flaws Could Let Attackers Hack Database Servers
June 03, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A new set of critical vulnerabilities uncovered in SAP's Sybase database software can grant unprivileged attackers complete control over a targeted database and even the underlying operating system in certain scenarios. The six flaws, disclosed by cybersecurity firm Trustwave today, reside in Sybase Adaptive Server Enterprise ( ASE ), a relational database management software geared towards transaction-based applications. The cybersecurity company said the issues — both specific to the operating system and the platform as a whole — were discovered during a security testing of the product, one of which has a CVSS rating of 9.1. Identified as CVE-2020-6248 , the most severe vulnerability allows arbitrary code execution when making database backups, thus allowing an attacker to trigger the execution of malicious commands. "During database backup operations, there are no security checks for overwriting critical configuration files," Trustwave researchers said  in a

WARNING: Hackers Install Secret Backdoor on Thousands of Microsoft SQL Servers

WARNING: Hackers Install Secret Backdoor on Thousands of Microsoft SQL Servers
April 01, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers today uncovered a sustained malicious campaign dating back to May 2018 that targets Windows machines running MS-SQL servers to deploy backdoors and other kinds of malware, including multi-functional remote access tools (RATs) and cryptominers. Named " Vollgar " after the Vollar cryptocurrency it mines and its offensive "vulgar" modus operandi, researchers at Guardicore Labs said the attack employs password brute-force to breach Microsoft SQL servers with weak credentials exposed to the Internet. Researchers claim the attackers managed to successfully infect nearly 2,000-3,000 database servers daily over the past few weeks, with potential victims belonging to healthcare, aviation, IT & telecommunications, and higher education sectors across China, India, the US, South Korea, and Turkey. Thankfully for those concerned, researchers have also released a script to let sysadmins detect if any of their Windows MS-SQL servers have been

Marriott Suffers Second Breach Exposing Data of 5.2 Million Hotel Guests

Marriott Suffers Second Breach Exposing Data of 5.2 Million Hotel Guests
March 31, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
International hotel chain Marriott today disclosed a data breach impacting nearly 5.2 million hotel guests, making it the second security incident to hit the company in recent years. "At the end of February 2020, we identified that an unexpected amount of guest information may have been accessed using the login credentials of two employees at a franchise property," Marriott said in a statement . "We believe this activity started in mid-January 2020. Upon discovery, we confirmed that the login credentials were disabled, immediately began an investigation, implemented heightened monitoring, and arranged resources to inform and assist guests." The incident exposed guests' personal information such as contact details (name, mailing address, email address, and phone number), loyalty account information (account number and points balance), and additional information such as company, gender, dates of births, room preferences, and language preferences. The ho

User Survey 2020 Report Shows Rapid Growth In Apache Pulsar Adoption

User Survey 2020 Report Shows Rapid Growth In Apache Pulsar Adoption
March 23, 2020The Hacker News
For the first time ever, the Apache Pulsar PMC team is publishing a user survey report. The 2020 Apache Pulsar User Survey Report reveals Pulsar's accelerating rate of global adoption, details how organizations are leveraging Pulsar to build real-time streaming applications, and highlights key features on Pulsar's product roadmap. Apache Pulsar is a cloud-native, distributed open source publish-subscribe (pub/sub) based high-performance server-to-server messaging and streaming system that manages hundreds of billions of events per day. It provides very low end-to-end latency, guaranteed message delivery, zero data loss, and a serverless lightweight computing framework for stream native data processing. Pulsar adoption has largely been driven by the market's increased demand for real-time, data-enabled technologies. While companies have tried to leverage monolithic messaging systems to build-out real-time offerings, they've hit major roadblocks. Ultimately, the

Virgin Media Data Leak Exposes Details of 900,000 Customers

Virgin Media Data Leak Exposes Details of 900,000 Customers
March 06, 2020Swati Khandelwal
On the same day yesterday, when the US-based telecom giant T-Mobile admitted a data breach , the UK-based telecommunication provider Virgin Media announced that it has also suffered a data leak incident exposing the personal information of roughly 900,000 customers. What happened? Unlike the T-Mobile data breach that involved a sophisticated cyber attack, Virgin Media said the incident was neither a cyber attack nor the company's database was hacked. Rather the personal details of around 900,000 Virgin Media UK-based customers were exposed after one of its marketing databases was left unsecured on the Internet and accessible to anyone without requiring any authentication. "The precise situation is that information stored on one of our databases has been accessed without permission. The incident did not occur due to a hack, but as a result of the database being incorrectly configured," the company said in a note published on its website on Thursday night. Acc

A Massive U.S. Property and Demographic Database Exposes 200 Million Records

A Massive U.S. Property and Demographic Database Exposes 200 Million Records
March 05, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
More than 200 million records containing a wide range of property-related information on US residents were left exposed on a database that was accessible on the web without requiring any password or authentication. The exposed data — a mix of personal and demographic details — included the name, address, email address, age, gender, ethnicity, employment, credit rating, investment preferences, income, net worth, and property information, such as: Market value Property type Mortgage amount, rate, type, and lender Refinance amount, rate, type, and lender Previous owners Year built Number of beds and bathrooms Tax assessment information According to security firm Comparitech , the database, which was hosted on Google Cloud, is said to have been first indexed by search engine BinaryEdge on 26th January and discovered a day later by cybersecurity researcher Bob Diachenko. But after failing to identify the database owner, the server was eventually taken offline more than a

App Used by Israel's Ruling Party Leaked Personal Data of All 6.5 Million Voters

App Used by Israel's Ruling Party Leaked Personal Data of All 6.5 Million Voters
February 11, 2020Mohit Kumar
An election campaigning website operated by Likud―the ruling political party of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu―inadvertently exposed personal information of all 6.5 million eligible Israeli voters on the Internet, just three weeks before the country is going to have a legislative election. In Israel, all political parties receive personal details of voters before the election, which they can't share with any third party and are responsible for protecting the privacy of their citizens and erasing it after the elections are over. Reportedly, Likud shared the entire voter registry with Feed-b, a software development company, who then uploaded it a website (elector.co.il) designed to promote the voting management app called 'Elector.' According to Ran Bar-Zik , a web security researcher who disclosed the issue, the voters' data was not leaked using any security vulnerability in the Elector app; instead, the incident occurred due to negligence by the softw

Unsecured Adobe Server Exposes Data for 7.5 Million Creative Cloud Users

Unsecured Adobe Server Exposes Data for 7.5 Million Creative Cloud Users
October 26, 2019Swati Khandelwal
The U.S. multinational computer software company Adobe has suffered a serious security breach earlier this month that exposed user records' database belonging to the company's popular Creative Cloud service. With an estimated 15 million subscribers, Adobe Creative Cloud or Adobe CC is a subscription service that gives users access to the company's full suite of popular creative software for desktop and mobile, including Photoshop, Illustrator, Premiere Pro, InDesign, Lightroom, and many more. What happened? — Earlier this month, security researcher Bob Diachenko collaborated with the cybersecurity firm Comparitech to uncover an unsecured Elasticsearch database belonging to Adobe Creative Cloud subscription service that was accessible to anyone without any password or authentication. How many victims? — The inadvertently exposed database, which has now been secured, contained personal information of nearly 7.5 million Adobe Creative Cloud user accounts. What type

Stealthy Microsoft SQL Server Backdoor Malware Spotted in the Wild

Stealthy Microsoft SQL Server Backdoor Malware Spotted in the Wild
October 22, 2019Wang Wei
Cybersecurity researchers claim to have discovered a previously undocumented backdoor specifically designed for Microsoft SQL servers that could allow a remote attacker to control an already compromised system stealthily. Dubbed Skip-2.0 , the backdoor malware is a post-exploitation tool that runs in the memory and lets remote attackers connect to any account on the server running MSSQL version 11 and version 12 by using a "magic password." What's more? The malware manages to remain undetected on the victim's MSSQL Server by disabling the compromised machine's logging functions, event publishing, and audit mechanisms every time the "magic password" is used. With these capabilities, an attacker can stealthily copy, modify, or delete the content stored in a database, the impact of which varies from application to application integrated with targeted servers. "This could be used, for example, to manipulate in-game currencies for financial gai

Marriott Faces $123 Million GDPR Fine Over Starwood Data Breach

Marriott Faces $123 Million GDPR Fine Over Starwood Data Breach
July 09, 2019Wang Wei
After fining British Airways with a record fine of £183 million earlier this week, the UK's data privacy regulator is now planning to slap world's biggest hotel chain Marriott International with a £99 million ($123 million) fine under GDPR over 2014 data breach. This is the second major penalty notice in the last two days that hit companies for failing to protect its customers' personal and financial information compromised and implement adequate security measures. In November 2018, Marriott discovered that unknown hackers compromised their guest reservation database through its Starwood hotels subsidiary and walked away with personal details of approximately 339 million guests. The compromised database leaked guests' names, mailing addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, dates of birth, gender, arrival and departure information, reservation date, and communication preferences. The breach, which likely happened in 2014, also exposed unencrypted passport

MongoDB 4.2 Introduces End-to-End Field Level Encryption for Databases

MongoDB 4.2 Introduces End-to-End Field Level Encryption for Databases
June 20, 2019Swati Khandelwal
At its developer conference held earlier this week in New York, the MongoDB team announced the latest version of its database management software that includes a variety of advanced features, including Field Level Encryption, Distributed Transactions, and Wildcard Indexes. The newly introduced Field Level Encryption (FLE), which will be available in the upcoming MongoDB 4.2 release, is an end-to-end encryption feature that encrypts and decrypts sensitive users' data on the client-side, preventing hackers from accessing plaintext data even if the database instance left exposed online or the server itself gets compromised. Almost every website, app, and service on the Internet today usually encrypt (particularly "hashing") only users' passwords before storing them into the databases, but unfortunately left other sensitive information unencrypted, including users' online activity data and their personal information. Moreover, even if there is an encryption

Flipboard Database Hacked — Users' Account Information Exposed

Flipboard Database Hacked — Users' Account Information Exposed
May 29, 2019Mohit Kumar
Flipboard, a popular social sharing and news aggregator service used by over 150 million people, has disclosed that its databases containing account information of certain users have been hacked. According to a public note published yesterday by the company, unknown hackers managed to gain unauthorized access to its systems for nearly 10 months—between June 2, 2018, and March 23, 2019, and then again on April 21-22, 2019. The hackers then potentially downloaded database containing Flipboard users' real name, usernames, cryptographically (salted hash) protected passwords and email addresses, including digital tokens for users who linked their Flipboard account to a third-party social media service. According to a breach notification email sent out to affected users and seen by The Hacker News, the company has now reset passwords for all users as a precautionary measure, forcing users to create a new strong password for their accounts. "You can continue to use Flipb

Core Elastic Stack Security Features Now Available For Free Users As Well

Core Elastic Stack Security Features Now Available For Free Users As Well
May 21, 2019Wang Wei
Elastic, the company behind the most widely used enterprise search engine ElasticSearch and the Elastic Stack, today announced that it has decided to make core security features of the Elastic Stack free and accessible to all users. ELK Stack or Elastic Stack is a collection of three powerful open source projects—Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana—that many large and small companies are using to format, search, analyze, and visualize a large amount of data in real time. In recent months, we have seen how thousands of instances of insecure, poorly configured Elasticsearch and Kibana servers had left millions of users sensitive data exposed on the Internet. Since the free version of Elastic Stack by default does not have any authentication or authorization mechanism, many developers and administrators fail to properly implement important security features manually. The core security features—like encrypted communication, role-based access control, authentication realms—in p

Facebook Collected Contacts from 1.5 Million Email Accounts Without Users' Permission

Facebook Collected Contacts from 1.5 Million Email Accounts Without Users' Permission
April 18, 2019Swati Khandelwal
Not a week goes without a new Facebook blunder. Remember the most recent revelation of Facebook being caught asking users new to the social network platform for their email account passwords to verify their identity? At the time, it was suspected that Facebook might be using access to users' email accounts to unauthorizedly and secretly gather a copy of their saved contacts. Now it turns out that the collection of email contacts was true, Facebook finally admits. In a statement released on Wednesday, Facebook said the social media company "unintentionally" uploaded email contacts from up to 1.5 million new users on its servers, without their consent or knowledge, since May 2016. In other words, nearly 1.5 million users had shared passwords for their email accounts with Facebook as part of its dubious verification process. A Facebook spokesperson shared information with Business Insider that the company was using harvested data to "build Facebook'

Over 100 Million JustDial Users' Personal Data Found Exposed On the Internet

Over 100 Million JustDial Users' Personal Data Found Exposed On the Internet
April 17, 2019Mohit Kumar
An unprotected database belonging to JustDial , India's largest local search service, is leaking personally identifiable information of its every customer in real-time who accessed the service via its website, mobile app, or even by calling on its fancy "88888 88888" customer care number, The Hacker News has learned and independently verified. Founded over two decades ago, JustDial (JD) is the oldest and leading local search engine in India that allows users to find relevant nearby providers and vendors of various products and services quickly while helping businesses listed in JD to market their offerings. Rajshekhar Rajaharia , an independent security researcher, yesterday contacted The Hacker News and shared details of how an unprotected, publicly accessible API endpoint of JustDial's database can be accessed by anyone to view profile information of over 100 million users associated with their mobile numbers. The leaked data includes JustDial users' na

Thousands of Unprotected Kibana Instances Exposing Elasticsearch Databases

Thousands of Unprotected Kibana Instances Exposing Elasticsearch Databases
April 01, 2019Wang Wei
In today's world, data plays a crucial role in the success of any organization, but if left unprotected, it could be a cybercriminal's dream come true. Poorly protected MongoDB, CouchDB, and Elasticsearch databases recently got a lot more attention from cybersecurity firms and media lately. More than half of the known cases of massive data breaches over the past year originated from unsecured database servers that were accessible to anyone without any password. Since the database of an organization contains its most valuable and easily exploitable data, cybercriminals have also started paying closer attention to find other insecure entry points. Though the problems with unprotected databases are no news and are widely discussed on the Internet, I want cybersecurity community and industry experts to pay some attention to thousands of unsafe Kibana instances that are exposed on the Internet, posing a huge risk to many companies. Kibana is an open-source analytics and visualiz

Unprotected Government Server Exposes Years of FBI Investigations

Unprotected Government Server Exposes Years of FBI Investigations
January 16, 2019Swati Khandelwal
A massive government data belonging to the Oklahoma Department of Securities (ODS) was left unsecured on a storage server for at least a week, exposing a whopping 3 terabytes of data containing millions of sensitive files. The unsecured storage server, discovered by Greg Pollock , a researcher with cybersecurity firm UpGuard, also contained decades worth of confidential case files from the Oklahoma Securities Commission and many sensitive FBI investigations—all wide open and accessible to anyone without any password. Other severe files exposed included emails, social security numbers, names, and addresses of 10,000 brokers, credentials for remote access to ODS workstations, and communications meant for the Oklahoma Securities Commission, along with a list of identifiable information related to AIDS patients. While the researcher doesn't know exactly how long the server was open to the public, the Shodan search engine revealed that the server had been publicly open since at

Over 202 Million Chinese Job Seekers' Details Exposed On the Internet

Over 202 Million Chinese Job Seekers' Details Exposed On the Internet
January 10, 2019Wang Wei
Cybersecurity researcher has discovered online a massive database containing records of more than 202 million Chinese citizens that remained accessible to anyone on the Internet without authentication until last week. The unprotected 854.8 gigabytes of the database was stored in an instance of MongoDB, a NoSQL high performance and cross-platform document-oriented database, hosted by an American server hosting company. In total, the database contained 202,730,434 records about job candidates from China, including candidates' personal information such as their full name, date of birth, phone number, email address, marriage status, and driver's license information, along with their professional experience and job expectations. Bob Diachenko, director of cyber risk research at Hacken.io and bug bounty platform HackenProof, discovered the existence of database two weeks ago, which had been secured shortly after his notification on Twitter. However, it is worth noting that &

Insecure Hadoop Clusters Expose Over 5,000 Terabytes of Data

Insecure Hadoop Clusters Expose Over 5,000 Terabytes of Data
June 03, 2017Swati Khandelwal
Until last year, cyber criminals were only targeting computers of individuals and organisations with ransomware and holding them for ransom, but then they started targeting unprotected online databases and servers around the globe for ransom as well. Earlier this year, we saw notorious incidents where tens of thousands of unprotected MongoDB and Elasticsearch databases were hacked and held for ransom in exchange of the data the hackers had stolen and deleted from the poorly configured systems. Now, cyber crooks have started targeting unprotected Hadoop Clusters and CouchDB servers as well, making the ransomware game nastier if your servers are not securely configured. Nearly 4,500 servers with the Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS) — the primary distributed storage used by Hadoop applications — were found exposing more than 5,000 Terabytes (5.12 Petabytes) of data, according to an analysis conducted using Shodan search engine. This exposure is due to the same issue — H

Breach Database Site 'LeakedSource' Goes Offline After Alleged Police Raid

Breach Database Site 'LeakedSource' Goes Offline After Alleged Police Raid
January 27, 2017Mohit Kumar
The biggest mistake companies make with data security is leaving all their secrets unprotected at one place, which if attacked, they are all gone in one shot. An unnamed law enforcement agency has reportedly accessed billions of compromised usernames, email IDs, and their passwords, collected by LeakedSource, a popular breach notification service. LeakedSource, launched in late 2015, that exposed some of the largest data breaches in 2016, including LinkedIn , DailyMotion , Rambler.ru , Last.fm , VK.com , Weebly, and Foursquare , might be facing a permanent shut down after law enforcement officers allegedly raided its operator. The LeakedSource website that allowed visitors to look up for their account details that had been collected from multiple data breaches has suddenly disappeared, and its associated social media accounts have been suspended. The data breach aggregation service had always been criticized for its unethical policy of allowing anyone to look up hacked acco
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