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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: email security

Critical OpenSMTPD Bug Opens Linux and OpenBSD Mail Servers to Hackers

Critical OpenSMTPD Bug Opens Linux and OpenBSD Mail Servers to Hackers

January 30, 2020Wang Wei
Cybersecurity researchers have discovered a new critical vulnerability ( CVE-2020-7247 ) in the OpenSMTPD email server that could allow remote attackers to take complete control over BSD and many Linux based servers. OpenSMTPD is an open-source implementation of the server-side SMTP protocol that was initially developed as part of the OpenBSD project but now comes pre-installed on many UNIX-based systems. According to Qualys Research Labs, who discovered this vulnerability, the issue resides in the OpenSMTPD's sender address validation function, called smtp_mailaddr(), which can be exploited to execute arbitrary shell commands with elevated root privileges on a vulnerable server just by sending specially crafted SMTP messages to it. The flaw affects OpenBSD version 6.6 and works against the default configuration for both, the locally enabled interface as well as remotely if the daemon has been enabled to listen on all interfaces and accepts external mail. "Exploit
BitDam Study Exposes High Miss Rates of Leading Email Security Systems

BitDam Study Exposes High Miss Rates of Leading Email Security Systems

January 21, 2020The Hacker News
Imagine receiving an email from US VP Mike Pence's official email account asking for help because he has been stranded in the Philippines. Actually, you don't have to. This actually happened. Pence's email was hacked when he was still the governor of Indiana, and his account was used to attempt to defraud several people. How did this happen? Is it similar to how the DNC server was hacked? Email hacking is one of the most widespread cyber threats at present. It is estimated that around 8 out of 10 people who use the internet have received some form of phishing attack through their emails. Additionally, according to Avanan's 2019 Global Phish Report , 1 in 99 emails is a phishing attack. BitDam is aware of how critical emails are in modern communication. BitDam published a new study on the email threat detection weaknesses of the leading players in email security, and the findings command attention. The research team discovered how Microsoft's Office365
14 Ways to Evade Botnet Malware Attacks On Your Computers

14 Ways to Evade Botnet Malware Attacks On Your Computers

December 18, 2019Wang Wei
Cybercriminals are busy innovators, adapting their weapons and attack strategies, and ruthlessly roaming the web in search of their next big score. Every manner of sensitive information, such as confidential employee records, customers' financial data, protected medical documents, and government files, are all subject to their relentless threats to cybersecurity . Solutions span a broad spectrum, from training email users to ensuring a VPN kill switch is in place, to adding extensive advanced layers of network protection. To successfully guard against severe threats from hackers, worm viruses to malware, such as botnet attacks, network managers need to use all tools and methods that fit well into a comprehensive cyber defense strategy. Of all the menaces mentioned above to a website owner's peace of mind, botnets arguably present the most unsettling form of security risk. They're not the mere achievements of malicious amateur cybercriminals. They're state
Phorpiex Botnet Sending Out Millions of Sextortion Emails Using Hacked Computers

Phorpiex Botnet Sending Out Millions of Sextortion Emails Using Hacked Computers

October 16, 2019Mohit Kumar
A decade-old botnet malware that currently controls over 450,000 computers worldwide has recently shifted its operations from infecting machines with ransomware or crypto miners to abusing them for sending out sextortion emails to millions of innocent people. Extortion by email is growing significantly, with a large number of users recently complaining about receiving sextortion emails that attempt to extort money from individuals by blackmailing them into exposing their sexual content. Though until now, it wasn't clear how scammers were sending such massive amounts of emails without getting blacklisted by the email providers, security researchers from CheckPoint finally found the missing block in this puzzle. In its latest report shared with The Hacker News prior to the release, Tel Aviv-based security firm CheckPoint reveals that a botnet, called Phorpiex , has recently been updated to include a spam bot designed to use compromised computers as proxies to send out over 3
How SMBs Can Mitigate the Growing Risk of File-based Attacks

How SMBs Can Mitigate the Growing Risk of File-based Attacks

October 02, 2019The Hacker News
Cases of document-based malware are steadily rising. 59 percent of all malicious files detected in the first quarter of 2019 were contained in documents. Due to how work is done in today's offices and workplaces, companies are among those commonly affected by file-based attacks. Since small to medium businesses (SMBs) usually lack the kind of security that protects their larger counterparts, they have a greater risk of being affected. Falling victim to file-based malware can cause enormous problems for SMBs. An attack can damage critical data stored in the organization's computers. Such loss can force a company to temporarily halt operations, resulting in financial losses. If a customer's private and financial information is compromised, the company may also face compliance inquiries and lawsuits. Their reputations could also take a hit, discouraging customers from doing business with them. But despite these risks, SMBs still invest very little in cybersecurity
New Critical Exim Flaw Exposes Email Servers to Remote Attacks — Patch Released

New Critical Exim Flaw Exposes Email Servers to Remote Attacks — Patch Released

September 30, 2019Swati Khandelwal
A critical security vulnerability has been discovered and fixed in the popular open-source Exim email server software, which could allow a remote attacker to simply crash or potentially execute malicious code on targeted servers. Exim maintainers today released an urgent security update— Exim version 4.92.3 —after publishing an early warning two days ago, giving system administrators an early head-up on its upcoming security patches that affect all versions of the email server software from 4.92 up to and including then-latest version 4.92.2. Exim is a widely used, open source mail transfer agent (MTA) developed for Unix-like operating systems like Linux, Mac OSX or Solaris, which runs almost 60 percent of the Internet's email servers today for routing, delivering and receiving email messages. This is the second time in this month when the Exim maintainers have released an urgent security update. Earlier this month, the team patched a critical remote code execution flaw (
Over Dozen Popular Email Clients Found Vulnerable to Signature Spoofing Attacks

Over Dozen Popular Email Clients Found Vulnerable to Signature Spoofing Attacks

April 30, 2019Swati Khandelwal
A team of security researchers has discovered several vulnerabilities in various implementations of OpenPGP and S/MIME email signature verification that could allow attackers to spoof signatures on over a dozen of popular email clients. The affected email clients include Thunderbird, Microsoft Outlook, Apple Mail with GPGTools, iOS Mail, GpgOL, KMail, Evolution, MailMate, Airmail, K-9 Mail, Roundcube and Mailpile. When you send a digitally signed email, it offers end-to-end authenticity and integrity of messages, ensuring recipients that the email has actually come from you. However, researchers tested 25 widely-used email clients for Windows, Linux, macOS, iOS, Android and Web and found that at least 14 of them were vulnerable to multiple types of practical attacks under five below-mentioned categories, making spoofed signatures indistinguishable from a valid one even by an attentive user. The research was conducted by a team of researchers from Ruhr University Bochum and
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'
Hackers Compromise Microsoft Support Agent to Access Outlook Email Accounts

Hackers Compromise Microsoft Support Agent to Access Outlook Email Accounts

April 13, 2019Swati Khandelwal
If you have an account with Microsoft Outlook email service, there is a possibility that your account information has been compromised by an unknown hacker or group of hackers, Microsoft confirmed The Hacker News. Earlier this year, hackers managed to breach Microsoft's customer support portal and access information related to some email accounts registered with the company's Outlook service. Yesterday, a user on Reddit publicly posted a screenshot of an email which he received from Microsoft warning that unknown attackers were able to access some information of his OutLook account between 1 January 2019 and 28 March 2019. Another user on Reddit also confirmed that he/she too received the same email from Microsoft. According to the incident notification email, as shown below, attackers were able to compromise credentials for one of Microsoft's customer support agents and used it to unauthorisedly access some information related to the affected accounts, but not
Facebook Caught Asking Some Users Passwords for Their Email Accounts

Facebook Caught Asking Some Users Passwords for Their Email Accounts

April 02, 2019Swati Khandelwal
Facebook has been caught practicing the worst ever user-verification mechanism that could put the security of its users at risk. Generally, social media or any other online service asks users to confirm a secret code or a unique URL sent to the email address they provided for the account registration. However, Facebook has been found asking some newly-registered users to provide the social network with the passwords to their email accounts, which according to security experts is a terrible idea that could threaten privacy and security of its users. First noticed by Twitter account e-Sushi using the handle @originalesushi, Facebook has been prompting users to hand over their passwords for third-party email services, so that the company can "automatically" verify their email addresses. However, the prompt only appears for email accounts from certain email providers which Facebook considers to be suspicious. "Tested it myself registering 3 times with 3 differe
Google Redesigns Gmail – Here's a List of Amazing New Features

Google Redesigns Gmail – Here's a List of Amazing New Features

April 25, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Google has finally been rolling out its new massively redesigned Gmail  for desktop and mobile to 1.4 billion of users worldwide, which might be the most significant single upgrade in Gmail's history. This huge revamped version of the email service now offers plenty of new features such as confidential mode, offline support, email snoozing and more, to make Gmail more smarter, secure, and easier to use. In this article, I have listed details of the most significant changes that you need to know and how to use them. Give it a quick read. New 'Confidential Mode' Features For Security & Privacy Are you afraid of sending sensitive documents in an email due to fear of hacking or being forwarded? Well, now you can simply click the lock icon at the bottom of an email to enable the new Confidential Mode, which lets you add a bunch of extra layers of security (as mentioned below) to the emails of your choice. 1) Self-Destructing Emails:  This feature lets you se
Deloitte Hacked — Cyber Attack Exposes Clients' Emails

Deloitte Hacked — Cyber Attack Exposes Clients' Emails

September 25, 2017Unknown
Another day, another data breach. This time one of the world's "big four" accountancy firms has fallen victim to a sophisticated cyber attack. Global tax and auditing firm Deloitte has confirmed the company had suffered a cyber attack that resulted in the theft of confidential information, including the private emails and documents of some of its clients. Deloitte is one of the largest private accounting firms in the U.S. which offers tax, auditing, operations consulting, cybersecurity advisory, and merger and acquisition assistance services to large banks, government agencies and large Fortune 500 multinationals, among others. The global accountancy firm said Monday that its system had been accessed via an email platform from October last year through this past March and that "very few" of its clients had been affected, the Guardian reports . The firm discovered the cyber attack in March, but it believes the unknown attackers may have had access to i
Yahoo Confirms 500 Million Accounts Were Hacked by 'State Sponsored' Hackers

Yahoo Confirms 500 Million Accounts Were Hacked by 'State Sponsored' Hackers

September 22, 2016Mohit Kumar
500 million accounts — that's half a Billion users! That's how many Yahoo accounts were compromised in a massive data breach dating back to 2014 by what was believed to be a "state sponsored" hacking group. Over a month ago, a hacker was found to be selling login information related to 200 million Yahoo accounts on the Dark Web , although Yahoo acknowledged that the breach was much worse than initially expected. "A recent investigation by Yahoo! Inc. has confirmed that a copy of certain user account information was stolen from the company's network in late 2014 by what it believes is a state-sponsored actor," reads the statement . Yahoo is investigating the breach with law enforcement agency and currently believes that users' names, email addresses, dates of birth, phone numbers, passwords, and in some cases, encrypted and unencrypted security questions-answers were stolen from millions of Yahoo users. However, the company does not believe
Hacker is Selling 272 Million Email Passwords for Just $1

Hacker is Selling 272 Million Email Passwords for Just $1

May 05, 2016Wang Wei
A massive database of 272 million emails and passwords for popular email services, including Gmail, Microsoft, and Yahoo, are being offered for sale on the Dark Web for less than $1, media reports. An anonymous Russian hacker, who goes by the moniker " the Collector ," was first spotted by cybersecurity firm Hold Security advertising 1.17 Billion user records for email accounts on a dark web forum. The stolen credentials apparently came from some of the world's biggest email providers, including Gmail, Yahoo, Microsoft and Russia's Mail.ru. When security analysts at Hold Security reached out to the hacker and began negotiating for the dataset to verify the authenticity of those records, the hacker only asked for 50 Rubles (less than a buck) in return of the complete dump. However, it seems that there is actually nothing to worry about. Hold Security CEO Alex Holden said that a large number of those 1.17 Billion accounts credentials turned out to be duplicate an
What is SMTP STS? How It improves Email Security for StartTLS?

What is SMTP STS? How It improves Email Security for StartTLS?

March 24, 2016Swati Khandelwal
Despite so many messaging apps, Email is still one of the widely used and popular ways to communicate in this digital age. But are your Emails secure? We are using email services for decades, but the underlying 1980s transport protocol used to send emails, Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP), is ancient and lacks the ability to secure your email communication entirely. However, to overcome this problem, SMTP STARTTLS was invented in 2002 as a way to upgrade an insecure connection to a secure connection using TLS. But, STARTTLS was susceptible to man-in-the-middle attacks and encryption downgrades. But worry not. A new security feature is on its way!!! SMTP STS: An Effort to Make Email More Secure Top email providers, namely Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!, Comcast, LinkedIn, and 1&1 Mail & Media Development, have joined forces to develop a new email standard that makes sure the emails you send are going through an encrypted channel and cannot be sniffed. Dubbed SMT
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