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SysAdmin of Billion-Dollar Hacking Group Gets 10-Year Sentence

SysAdmin of Billion-Dollar Hacking Group Gets 10-Year Sentence

April 17, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A high-level manager and systems administrator associated with the FIN7 threat actor has been sentenced to 10 years in prison, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Friday. Fedir Hladyr , a 35-year-old Ukrainian national, is said to have played a crucial role in a criminal scheme that compromised tens of millions of debit and credit cards, in addition to aggregating the stolen information, supervising other members of the group, and maintaining the server infrastructure that FIN7 used to attack and control victims' machines. The development comes after Hladyr pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit computer hacking in September 2019. He was arrested in Dresden, Germany, in 2018 and extradited to the U.S. city of Seattle. Hladyr has also been ordered to pay $2.5 million in restitution. "This criminal organization had more than 70 people organized into business units and teams. Some were hackers, others developed the malwa
What are the different roles within cybersecurity?

What are the different roles within cybersecurity?

April 17, 2021The Hacker News
People talk about the cybersecurity job market like it's a monolith, but there are a number of different roles within cybersecurity, depending not only on your skill level and experience but on what you like to do. In fact, Cybercrime Magazine came up with a list of  50 cybersecurity job titles , while CyberSN, a recruiting organization, came up with its own list of  45 cybersecurity job categories . Similarly, OnGig.com, a company that helps firms write their job ads, analyzed 150 cybersecurity job titles and came up with its  own top 30 list . This article is based on research I did with Springboard, one of the  first cybersecurity bootcamps with a job guarantee  and 1:1 mentorship. In particular, CyberSeek.org, a joint industry initiative looking at the cybersecurity job market, offers an  interactive list  of not only the various positions within cybersecurity but offers you a career path showing how you can get promoted. The complicated part is that these titles and roles
Severe Bugs Reported in EtherNet/IP Stack for Industrial Systems

Severe Bugs Reported in EtherNet/IP Stack for Industrial Systems

April 16, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) on Thursday issued an  advisory  warning of multiple vulnerabilities in the OpENer  EtherNet/IP  stack that could expose industrial systems to denial-of-service (DoS) attacks, data leaks, and remote code execution. All OpENer commits and versions prior to February 10, 2021, are affected, although there are no known public exploits that specifically target these vulnerabilities. The four security flaws were discovered and reported to CISA by researchers Tal Keren and Sharon Brizinov from operational technology security company Claroty. Additionally, a fifth security issue identified by Claroty was previously disclosed by Cisco Talos ( CVE-2020-13556 ) on December 2, 2020. "An attacker would only need to send crafted ENIP/CIP packets to the device in order to exploit these vulnerabilities," the researchers  said . CVE-2020-13556 concerns an out-of-bounds write vulnerability in the Ethernet/IP server that cou
New NAME:WRECK Vulnerabilities Impact Nearly 100 Million IoT Devices

New NAME:WRECK Vulnerabilities Impact Nearly 100 Million IoT Devices

April 13, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Security researchers have uncovered nine vulnerabilities affecting four TCP/IP stacks impacting more than 100 million consumer and enterprise devices that could be exploited by an attacker to take control of a vulnerable system. Dubbed " NAME:WRECK " by Forescout and JSOF, the flaws are the latest in series of studies undertaken as part of an initiative called Project Memoria to study the security of widely-used TCP/IP stacks that are incorporated by various vendors in their firmware to offer internet and network connectivity features. "These vulnerabilities relate to Domain Name System (DNS) implementations, causing either Denial of Service (DoS) or Remote Code Execution (RCE), allowing attackers to take target devices offline or to take control over them," the researchers said. The name comes from the fact that parsing of domain names can break (i.e., "wreck") DNS implementations in TCP/IP stacks, adding to a recent uptick in vulnerabilities such as 
BRATA Malware Poses as Android Security Scanners on Google Play Store

BRATA Malware Poses as Android Security Scanners on Google Play Store

April 12, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A new set of malicious Android apps have been caught posing as app security scanners on the official Play Store to distribute a backdoor capable of gathering sensitive information. "These malicious apps urge users to update Chrome, WhatsApp, or a PDF reader, yet instead of updating the app in question, they take full control of the device by abusing accessibility services," cybersecurity firm McAfee  said  in an analysis published on Monday. The apps in question were designed to target users in Brazil, Spain, and the U.S., with most of them accruing anywhere between 1,000 to 5,000 installs. Another app named DefenseScreen racked up 10,000 installs before it was removed from the Play Store last year. First documented by Kaspersky in August 2019,  BRATA  (short for "Brazilian Remote Access Tool Android") emerged as an Android malware with screen recording abilities before steadily morphing into a banking trojan. "It combines full device control capabilitie
Indian Brokerage Firm Upstox Suffers Data Breach Leaking 2.5 Millions Users' Data

Indian Brokerage Firm Upstox Suffers Data Breach Leaking 2.5 Millions Users' Data

April 12, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Online trading and discount brokerage platform Upstox has become the latest Indian company to suffer a security breach of its systems, resulting in the exposure of sensitive information of approximately 2.5 million users on the dark web. The leaked information includes names, email addresses, dates of birth, bank account information, and about 56 million know your customer (KYC) documents pulled from the company's server. The breach was first disclosed by independent researcher  Rajshekhar Rajaharia  on April 11. It's not immediately clear when the incident occurred. Reacting to the development, the company, however,  said  it had recently upgraded its security systems following reports of "unauthorized access into our database" while stressing that users' funds and securities remained protected. As a precaution, besides initiating a secure password reset of users' accounts, Upstox said it restricted access to the impacted database, implying it was a ca
Hackers Tampered With APKPure Store to Distribute Malware Apps

Hackers Tampered With APKPure Store to Distribute Malware Apps

April 09, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
APKPure, one of the largest alternative app stores outside of the Google Play Store, was infected with malware this week, allowing threat actors to distribute Trojans to Android devices. In a supply-chain attack similar to that of German telecommunications  equipment manufacturer Gigaset , the APKPure client version 3.17.18 is said to have been tampered with in an attempt to trick unsuspecting users into downloading and installing malicious applications linked to the malicious code built into the APKpure app. The development was reported by researchers from  Doctor Web  and  Kaspersky . "This trojan belongs to the dangerous Android.Triada malware family capable of downloading, installing and uninstalling software without users' permission," Doctor Web researchers said. According to Kaspersky, the APKPure version 3.17.18 was tweaked to incorporate an advertisement SDK that acts as a Trojan dropper designed to deliver other malware to a victim's device. "This
[WHITEPAPER] How to Achieve CMMC Security Compliance for Your Business

[WHITEPAPER] How to Achieve CMMC Security Compliance for Your Business

April 09, 2021The Hacker News
For organizations that deal with the defense infrastructure – cybersecurity is more than just a buzzword. Recently the US Department of Defense (DoD) created a new certification process – the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certificate (CMMC) – to ensure that all its vendors and contractors follow established best cybersecurity practices. For organizations that work along the DoD supply chain, this means adhering to a strict regulatory framework, which can be quite complex. For one, must ensure that cybersecurity processes and practices are aligned with the type and sensitivity of the information that needs to be protected. Even though the model is tiered (from "basic cybersecurity hygiene" to "advanced"), organizations will expend a significant effort to ensure they align with the compliance level appropriate for their contracts. This is why one XDR provider has created a new guide to demonstrate how it helps organizations achieve CMMC compliance ( download the whitepaper here ). T
WhatsApp-based wormable Android malware spotted on the Google Play Store

WhatsApp-based wormable Android malware spotted on the Google Play Store

April 07, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers have discovered yet another piece of wormable Android malware—but this time downloadable directly from the official Google Play Store—that's capable of propagating via WhatsApp messages. Disguised as a rogue Netflix app under the name of "FlixOnline," the malware comes with features that allow it to automatically reply to a victim's incoming WhatsApp messages with a payload received from a command-and-control (C&C) server.  "The application is actually designed to monitor the user's WhatsApp notifications, and to send automatic replies to the user's incoming messages using content that it receives from a remote C&C server," Check Point researchers said in an analysis published today. Besides masquerading as a Netflix app, the malicious "FlixOnline" app also requests intrusive permissions that allow it to create fake Login screens for other apps, with the goal of stealing credentials and gain access to
How the Work-From-Home Shift Impacts SaaS Security

How the Work-From-Home Shift Impacts SaaS Security

April 05, 2021The Hacker News
The data is in. According to IBM Security's  2020 Cost of a Data Breach Report , there is a 50% increase in cloud usage for enterprises across all industries. The number of threats targeting cloud services, predominantly collaboration services like Office 365, has  increased 630% . Moreover, 75% of respondents report that discovery and recovery time from data breaches has significantly increased due to remote work during the pandemic. Although organizations can save over $1 million if they discover a breach in the first 30 days, the average reported response time was a whopping 280 days.  In the remote-work world, SaaS apps have become an enticing vector-of-choice for bad actors. Just think of the typical employee, working off-site, untrained in security measures, and how their access or privileges increase the risk of sensitive data being stolen, exposed, or compromised. However, it doesn't have to be that way — a company's SaaS security posture can be strengthened, an
22-Year-Old Charged With Hacking Water System and Endangering Lives

22-Year-Old Charged With Hacking Water System and Endangering Lives

April 01, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A 22-year-old man from the U.S. state of Kansas has been indicted on charges that he unauthorizedly accessed a public water facility's computer system, jeopardizing the residents' safety and health in the local community. Wyatt A. Travnichek, 22, of Ellsworth County, Kansas, has been charged with one count of tampering with a public water system and one count of reckless damage to a protected computer during unauthorized access, according to the Department of Justice (DoJ). "By illegally tampering with a public drinking water system, the defendant threatened the safety and health of an entire community,"  said  Lance Ehrig, Special Agent in Charge of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Criminal Investigation Division in Kansas. "EPA and its law enforcement partners are committed to upholding the laws designed to protect our drinking water systems from harm or threat of harm. Today's indictment sends a clear message that individuals who intentionall
Critical Cisco Jabber Bug Could Let Attackers Hack Remote Systems

Critical Cisco Jabber Bug Could Let Attackers Hack Remote Systems

March 25, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cisco on Wednesday released software updates to address multiple vulnerabilities affecting its Jabber messaging clients across Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS. Successful exploitation of the flaws could permit an "attacker to execute arbitrary programs on the underlying operating system with elevated privileges, access sensitive information, intercept protected network traffic, or cause a denial of service (DoS) condition," the networking major  said  in an advisory. The issues concern a total of five security vulnerabilities, three of which (CVE-2021-1411, CVE-2021-1417, and CVE-2021-1418) were reported to the company by Olav Sortland Thoresen of Watchcom, with two others (CVE-2021-1469 and CVE-2021-1471) uncovered during internal security testing. Cisco notes that the flaws are not dependent on one another, and that exploitation of any one of the vulnerabilities doesn't hinge on the exploitation of another. But in order to do this, an attacker needs to be authenti
Chinese Hackers Used Facebook to Hack Uighur Muslims Living Abroad

Chinese Hackers Used Facebook to Hack Uighur Muslims Living Abroad

March 25, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Facebook may be banned in China, but the company on Wednesday said it has disrupted a network of bad actors using its platform to target the Uyghur community and lure them into downloading malicious software that would allow surveillance of their devices. "They targeted activists, journalists and dissidents predominantly among Uyghurs from Xinjiang in China primarily living abroad in Turkey, Kazakhstan, the United States, Syria, Australia, Canada and other countries," Facebook's Head of Cyber Espionage Investigations, Mike Dvilyanski, and Head of Security Policy, Nathaniel Gleicher,  said . "This group used various cyber espionage tactics to identify its targets and infect their devices with malware to enable surveillance." The social media giant said the "well-resourced and persistent operation" aligned with a threat actor known as  Evil Eye  (or Earth Empusa), a China-based collective known for its history of espionage attacks against the Muslim m
Tesla Ransomware Hacker Pleads Guilty; Swiss Hacktivist Charged for Fraud

Tesla Ransomware Hacker Pleads Guilty; Swiss Hacktivist Charged for Fraud

March 19, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
The U.S. Department of Justice yesterday announced updates on two separate cases involving cyberattacks—a Swiss hacktivist and a Russian hacker who planned to plant malware in the Tesla company. A Swiss hacker who was involved in the intrusion of cloud-based surveillance firm Verkada and exposed camera footage from its customers was charged by the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) on Thursday with conspiracy, wire fraud, and identity theft. Till Kottmann (aka "deletescape" and "tillie crimew"), 21, of Lucerne, Switzerland, and their co-conspirators were accused of hacking dozens of companies and government agencies since 2019 by targeting their "git" and other source code repositories and posting the proprietary data of more than 100 entities on a website called git[.]rip, according to the indictment. Kottmann is alleged to have cloned the source code and other confidential files containing hard-coded administrative credentials and access keys, using th
[Webinar] Oy Vey, We Hired a Large, Hairy Hacker…

[Webinar] Oy Vey, We Hired a Large, Hairy Hacker…

March 17, 2021The Hacker News
It's not every day that one of the best-known independent cybersecurity individuals joins a cybersecurity company. The two are generally on opposite sides of the coin, with little crossover. After all, they're usually concerned with different parts of the cybersecurity puzzle – one providing platforms and tools to defend organizations, the other keeping them accountable and looking for blind spots in even the best security tools. That seems to be changing, however, with a recent appointment. Cynet, an Autonomous XDR provider that recently closed a Series C funding round worth $40 million, announced that it has hired Chris Roberts as their Chief Security Strategist. Roberts is world-renowned in counter-threat intelligence, as well as in vulnerability and threat research fields, thanks to decades of experience. As part of his efforts at Cynet, Roberts will be focusing his work on helping empower and connect security professionals from organizations outside of the Fortune 200
Researchers Unveil New Linux Malware Linked to Chinese Hackers

Researchers Unveil New Linux Malware Linked to Chinese Hackers

March 10, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers on Wednesday shed light on a new sophisticated backdoor targeting Linux endpoints and servers that's believed to be the work of Chinese nation-state actors. Dubbed " RedXOR " by Intezer, the backdoor masquerades as a polkit daemon, with similarities found between the malware and those previously associated with the  Winnti Umbrella  (or Axiom) threat group such as ​PWNLNX, ​XOR.DDOS​ and Groundhog. RedXOR's name comes from the fact that it encodes its network data with a scheme based on XOR, and that it's compiled with a legacy  GCC compiler  on an old release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, suggesting that the malware is deployed in targeted attacks against legacy Linux systems. Intezer said  two   samples  of the malware were uploaded from Indonesia and Taiwan around Feb. 23-24, both countries that are known to be singled out by China-based threat groups. Aside from the overlaps in terms of the overall flow and functionalities and th
9 Android Apps On Google Play Caught Distributing AlienBot Banker and MRAT Malware

9 Android Apps On Google Play Caught Distributing AlienBot Banker and MRAT Malware

March 09, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers have discovered a new malware dropper contained in as many as 9 Android apps distributed via Google Play Store that deploys a second stage malware capable of gaining intrusive access to the financial accounts of victims as well as full control of their devices. "This dropper, dubbed Clast82, utilizes a series of techniques to avoid detection by Google Play Protect detection, completes the evaluation period successfully, and changes the payload dropped from a non-malicious payload to the AlienBot Banker and MRAT," Check Point researchers Aviran Hazum, Bohdan Melnykov, and Israel Wernik said in a write-up published today. The apps that were used for the campaign include Cake VPN, Pacific VPN, eVPN, BeatPlayer, QR/Barcode Scanner MAX, Music Player, tooltipnatorlibrary, and QRecorder. After the findings were reported to Google on January 28, the rogue apps were removed from the Play Store on February 9.  Malware authors have resorted to a variety o
Extortion Gang Breaches Cybersecurity Firm Qualys Using Accellion Exploit

Extortion Gang Breaches Cybersecurity Firm Qualys Using Accellion Exploit

March 04, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Enterprise cloud security firm Qualys has become the latest victim to join a long list of entities to have suffered a data breach after zero-day vulnerabilities in its Accellion File Transfer Appliance (FTA) server were exploited to steal sensitive business documents. As proof of access to the data, the cybercriminals behind the recent hacks targeting Accellion FTA servers have shared screenshots of files belonging to the company's customers on a publicly accessible data leak website operated by the CLOP ransomware gang. Confirming the incident, Qualys Chief Information Security Officer Ben Carr  said  a detailed probe "identified unauthorized access to files hosted on the Accellion FTA server" located in a DMZ (aka  demilitarized zone ) environment that's segregated from the rest of the internal network. "Based on this investigation, we immediately notified the limited number of customers impacted by this unauthorized access," Carr added. "The in
Hackers Now Hiding ObliqueRAT Payload in Images to Evade Detection

Hackers Now Hiding ObliqueRAT Payload in Images to Evade Detection

March 03, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybercriminals are now deploying remote access Trojans (RATs) under the guise of seemingly innocuous images hosted on infected websites, once again highlighting how threat actors quickly change tactics when their attack methods are discovered and exposed publicly. New research released by Cisco Talos reveals an active malware campaign targeting organizations in South Asia that utilize malicious Microsoft Office documents forged with macros to spread a RAT that goes by the name of  ObliqueRAT . First documented in  February 2020 , the malware has been linked to a threat actor tracked as  Transparent Tribe  (aka Operation C-Major, Mythic Leopard, or APT36), a highly prolific group allegedly of Pakistani origin known for its attacks against human rights activists in the country as well as military and government personnel in India. While the ObliqueRAT modus operandi previously overlapped with another Transparent Tribe campaign in December 2019 to disseminate CrimsonRAT, the new wave
A $50,000 Bug Could've Allowed Hackers Access Any Microsoft Account

A $50,000 Bug Could've Allowed Hackers Access Any Microsoft Account

March 03, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Microsoft has awarded an independent security researcher $50,000 as part of its bug bounty program for reporting a flaw that could have allowed a malicious actor to hijack users' accounts without their knowledge. Reported by Laxman Muthiyah, the vulnerability aims to brute-force the seven-digit security code that's sent to a user's email address or mobile number to corroborate his (or her) identity before resetting the password in order to recover access to the account. Put differently, the account takeover scenario is a consequence of privilege escalation stemming from an authentication bypass at an endpoint which is used to verify the codes sent as part of the  account recovery process . The company addressed the issue in November 2020, before details of the flaw came to light on Tuesday. Although there are encryption barriers and rate-limiting checks designed to prevent an attacker from repeatedly submitting all the 10 million combinations of the codes in an automa
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