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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: phishing attack

Indian IT Company Was Hired to Hack Politicians, Investors, Journalists Worldwide

Indian IT Company Was Hired to Hack Politicians, Investors, Journalists Worldwide
June 09, 2020Wang Wei
A team of cybersecurity researchers today outed a little-known Indian IT firm that has secretly been operating as a global hackers-for-hire service or hacking-as-a-service platform. Based in Delhi, BellTroX InfoTech allegedly targeted thousands of high-profile individuals and hundreds of organizations across six continents in the last seven years. Hack-for-hire services do not operate as a state-sponsored group but likely as a hack-for-hire company that conducts commercial cyberespionage against given targets on behalf of private investigators and their clients. According to the latest report published by the University of Toronto's Citizen Lab, BellTroX—dubbed ' Dark Basin ' as a hacking group—targeted advocacy groups, senior politicians, government officials, CEOs, journalists, and human rights defenders. "Over the course of our multi-year investigation, we found that Dark Basin likely conducted commercial espionage on behalf of their clients against oppo

New Android Flaw Affecting Over 1 Billion Phones Let Attackers Hijack Apps

New Android Flaw Affecting Over 1 Billion Phones Let Attackers Hijack Apps
May 26, 2020Mohit Kumar
Remember Strandhogg? A security vulnerability affecting Android that malicious apps can exploit to masquerade as any other app installed on a targeted device to display fake interfaces to the users, tricking them into giving away sensitive information. Late last year, at the time of its public disclosure, researchers also confirmed that some attackers were already exploiting the flaw in the wild to steal users' banking and other login credentials, as well as to spy on their activities. The same team of Norwegian cybersecurity researchers today unveiled details of a new critical vulnerability (CVE-2020-0096) affecting the Android operating system that could allow attackers to carry out a much more sophisticated version of Strandhogg attack. Dubbed ' Strandhogg 2.0 ,' the new vulnerability affects all Android devices, except those running the latest version, Android Q / 10, of the mobile operating system—which, unfortunately, is running on only 15-20% of the total

Hackers Trick 3 British Private Equity Firms Into Sending Them $1.3 Million

Hackers Trick 3 British Private Equity Firms Into Sending Them $1.3 Million
April 23, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
In a recent highly targeted BEC attack, hackers managed to trick three British private equity firms into wire-transferring a total of $1.3 million to the bank accounts fraudsters have access to — while the victimized executives thought they closed an investment deal with some startups. According to the cybersecurity firm Check Point, who shared its latest investigation with The Hacker News, nearly $700,000 of the total wire transferred amount has permanently lost to the attackers, with the rest of the amount recovered after researchers alerted the targeted firms in time. Dubbed ' The Florentine Banker ,' the sophisticated cybercrime gang behind this attack, "seems to have honed their techniques over multiple attacks, from at least several years of activity and has proven to be a resourceful adversary, quickly adapting new situations," the researchers said. 'The techniques they use, especially the lookalike domains technique, present a severe threat — not

Hackers Targeting Critical Healthcare Facilities With Ransomware During Coronavirus Pandemic

Hackers Targeting Critical Healthcare Facilities With Ransomware During Coronavirus Pandemic
April 14, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
As hospitals around the world are struggling to respond to the coronavirus crisis, cybercriminals—with no conscience and empathy—are continuously targeting healthcare organizations, research facilities, and other governmental organizations with ransomware and malicious information stealers. The new research, published by Palo Alto Networks and shared with The Hacker News, confirmed that "the threat actors who profit from cybercrime will go to any extent, including targeting organizations that are in the front lines and responding to the pandemic on a daily basis." While the security firm didn't name the latest victims, it said a Canadian government healthcare organization and a Canadian medical research university both suffered ransomware attacks, as criminal groups seek to exploit the crisis for financial gain. The attacks were detected between March 24 and March 26 and were initiated as part of the coronavirus-themed phishing campaigns that have become widespr

7 Ways Hackers and Scammers Are Exploiting Coronavirus Panic

7 Ways Hackers and Scammers Are Exploiting Coronavirus Panic
April 09, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
In our previous stories, you might have already read about various campaigns warning how threat actors are capitalizing on the ongoing coronavirus pandemic in an attempt to infect your computers and mobile devices with malware or scam you out of your money. Unfortunately, to some extent, it's working, and that's because the attack surface is changing and expanding rapidly as many organizations and business tasks are going digital without much preparation, exposing themselves to more potential threats. Most of the recent cyberattacks are primarily exploiting the fears around the COVID-19 outbreak—fueled by disinformation and fake news—to distribute malware via Google Play apps , malicious links and attachments, and execute ransomware attacks. Here, we took a look at some of the wide range of unseen threats rising in the digital space, powered by coronavirus-themed lures that cybercriminals are using for espionage and commercial gain. The latest development adds to a l

COVID-19: Hackers Begin Exploiting Zoom's Overnight Success to Spread Malware

COVID-19: Hackers Begin Exploiting Zoom's Overnight Success to Spread Malware
March 30, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
As people increasingly work from home and online communication platforms such as Zoom explode in popularity in the wake of coronavirus outbreak, cybercriminals are taking advantage of the spike in usage by registering new fake "Zoom" domains and malicious "Zoom" executable files in an attempt to trick people into downloading malware on their devices. According to a report published by Check Point and shared with The Hacker News, over 1,700 new "Zoom" domains have been registered since the onset of the pandemic, with 25 percent of the domains registered in the past seven days alone. "We see a sharp rise in the number of 'Zoom' domains being registered, especially in the last week," said Omer Dembinsky, Manager of Cyber Research at Check Point . "The recent, staggering increase means that hackers have taken notice of the work-from-home paradigm shift that COVID-19 has forced, and they see it as an opportunity to deceive, lure,

How CISOs Should Prepare for Coronavirus Related Cybersecurity Threats

How CISOs Should Prepare for Coronavirus Related Cybersecurity Threats
March 18, 2020The Hacker News
The Coronavirus is hitting hard on the world's economy, creating a high volume of uncertainty within organizations. Cybersecurity firm Cynet today revealed new data, showing that the Coronavirus now has a significant impact on information security and that the crisis is actively exploited by threat actors. In light of these insights, Cynet has also shared a few ways to best prepare for the Coronavirus derived threat landscape and provides a solution ( learn more here ) to protect employees that are working from home with their personal computers because of the Coronavirus. The researchers identify two main trends – attacks that aim to steal remote user credentials and weaponized email attacks: Remote User Credential Theft The direct impact of the Coronavirus is a comprehensive quarantine policy that compels multiple organizations to allow their workforce to work from home to maintain business continuity. This inevitably entails shifting a significant portion of the wor

Hackers Created Thousands of Coronavirus (COVID-19) Related Sites As Bait

Hackers Created Thousands of Coronavirus (COVID-19) Related Sites As Bait
March 18, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
As the world comes to grips with the coronavirus pandemic , the situation has proven to be a blessing in disguise for threat actors, who've taken advantage of the opportunity to target victims with scams or malware campaigns. Now, according to a new report published by Check Point Research today and shared with The Hacker News, hackers are exploiting the COVID-19 outbreak to spread their own infections, including registering malicious Coronavirus-related domains and selling discounted off-the-shelf malware in the dark web. "Special offers by different hackers promoting their 'goods' — usually malicious malware or exploit tools — are being sold over the darknet under special offers with 'COVID19' or 'coronavirus' as discount codes, targeting wannabe cyber-attackers," the cybersecurity firm said. COVID-19 Discounts: Exploit Tools for Sale The report comes following an uptick in the number of malicious coronavirus-related domains that hav

Why Minimizing Human Error is the Only Viable Defense Against Spear Phishing

Why Minimizing Human Error is the Only Viable Defense Against Spear Phishing
February 25, 2020The Hacker News
Phishing attacks have become one of the business world's top cybersecurity concerns. These social engineering attacks have been rising over the years, with the most recent report from the Anti-Phishing Working Group coalition identifying over 266,000 active spoofed websites, which is nearly double the number detected during Q4 2018. Hackers have evolved their methods, from regular phishing attacks to spear phishing, where they use email messages disguised as coming from legitimate sources to dupe specific individuals. This is why the global spear phishing protection software market is estimated to reach $1.8 billion by 2025. However, conventional defenses can still fall short due to one particular weakness in the security perimeter – the human factor. Indeed, some 33 percent of 2019's data breaches involved humans falling victim to social engineering attacks. And given how sophisticated and creative the phishing perpetrators have been getting, it's easy to see h

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

Use iPhone as Physical Security Key to Protect Your Google Accounts

Use iPhone as Physical Security Key to Protect Your Google Accounts
January 16, 2020Mohit Kumar
Great news for iOS users! You can now use your iPhone or iPad, running iOS 10 or later, as a physical security key for securely logging into your Google account as part of the Advanced Protection Program for two-factor authentication. Android users have had this feature on their smartphones since last year, but now Apple product owners can also use this advanced, phishing-resistant form of authentication as an alternative to a physical security key. Adding extra security later of two-step authentication is one of the more essential steps you can take to secure your online accounts, which makes it harder for attackers to log in to your account, especially when they steal your password. "According to a study we [Google] released last year, people who exclusively used security keys to sign into their accounts never fell victim to targeted phishing attacks," said Shuvo Chatterjee, Product Manager at Google's Advanced Protection Program. Google recently update

Over 12,000 Google Users Hit by Government Hackers in 3rd Quarter of 2019

Over 12,000 Google Users Hit by Government Hackers in 3rd Quarter of 2019
November 27, 2019Wang Wei
As part of its active efforts to protect billions of online users, Google identified and warned over 12,000 of its users who were targeted by a government-backed hacking attempt in the third quarter of this year. According to a report published by Google's Threat Analysis Group (TAG), more than 90 percent of the targeted users were hit with " credential phishing emails " that tried to trick victims into handing over access to their Google account. Google's TAG tracks over 270 government-backed hacking groups from over 50 countries that are involved in intelligence collection, stealing intellectual property, destructive cyber attacks, targeting dissidents, journalists, and activists, or spreading coordinated disinformation. The alerts were sent to targeted users between July and September 2019, which is consistent within a +/-10 percent range of the number of phishing email warnings sent in the same period of 2018 and 2017, the company said. These warnings u

New Group of Hackers Targeting Businesses with Financially Motivated Cyber Attacks

New Group of Hackers Targeting Businesses with Financially Motivated Cyber Attacks
November 14, 2019Swati Khandelwal
Security researchers have tracked down activities of a new group of financially-motivated hackers that are targeting several businesses and organizations in Germany, Italy, and the United States in an attempt to infect them with backdoor, banking Trojan, or ransomware malware. Though the new malware campaigns are not customized for each organization, the threat actors appear to be more interested in businesses, IT services, manufacturing, and healthcare industries who possess critical data and can likely afford high ransom payouts. According to a report ProofPoint shared with The Hacker News, the newly discovered threat actors are sending out low-volume emails impersonating finance-related government entities with tax assessment and refund lured emails to targeted organizations. "Tax-themed Email Campaigns Target 2019 Filers, finance-related lures have been used seasonally with upticks in tax-related malware and phishing campaigns leading up to the annual tax filing deadlines in
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