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Healthcare Industry Witnessed 45% Spike in Cyber Attacks Since Nov 20

Healthcare Industry Witnessed 45% Spike in Cyber Attacks Since Nov 20

January 05, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cyberattacks targeting healthcare organizations have spiked by 45% since November 2020 as COVID-19 cases continue to increase globally. According to a new report published by Check Point Research today and shared with The Hacker News, this increase has made the sector the most targeted industry by cybercriminals when compared to an overall 22% increase in cyberattacks across all industry sectors worldwide seen during the same time period. The average number of weekly attacks in the healthcare sector reached 626 per organization in November as opposed to 430 the previous month, with attack vectors ranging from ransomware, botnets, remote code execution, and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. Ransomware attacks against hospitals also marked their biggest jump, with  Ryuk  and Sodinokibi emerging as the primary ransomware variants employed by various criminal groups. "The usage of Ryuk emphasizes the trend of having more targeted and tailored ransomware attacks rath
Google Speech-to-Text API Can Help Attackers Easily Bypass Google reCAPTCHA

Google Speech-to-Text API Can Help Attackers Easily Bypass Google reCAPTCHA

January 05, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A three-year-old attack technique to bypass Google's audio reCAPTCHA by using its own Speech-to-Text API has been found to still work with 97% accuracy. Researcher Nikolai Tschacher disclosed his findings in a proof-of-concept (PoC) of the attack on January 2. "The idea of the attack is very simple: You grab the MP3 file of the audio reCAPTCHA and you submit it to Google's own speech-to-text API," Tschacher  said  in a write-up. "Google will return the correct answer in over 97% of all cases." Introduced in 2000, CAPTCHAs (or Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart) are a type of challenge-response tests designed to protect against automated account creation and service abuse by presenting users with a question that is easy for humans to solve but difficult for computers. reCAPTCHA  is a popular version of the CAPTCHA technology that was acquired by Google in 2009. The search giant released the  third iteration  of re
British Court Rejects U.S. Request to Extradite WikiLeaks' Julian Assange

British Court Rejects U.S. Request to Extradite WikiLeaks' Julian Assange

January 04, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A British court has rejected the U.S. government's request to extradite Wikileaks founder Julian Assange to the country on charges pertaining to illegally obtaining and sharing classified material related to national security. In a hearing at Westminster Magistrates' Court today, Judge Vanessa Baraitser denied the extradition on the grounds that Assange is a suicide risk and extradition to the U.S. prison system would be oppressive. "I find that the mental condition of Mr. Assange is such that it would be oppressive to extradite him to the United States of America," judge Baraitser  said  in a 132-page ruling. The U.S. government is expected to appeal the decision. The case against Assange centers on WikiLeaks' publication of hundreds of thousands of leaked documents about the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, as well as diplomatic cables, in 2010 and 2011. The documents include "approximately 90,000 Afghanistan war-related significant activity reports, 400,0
Ticketmaster To Pay $10 Million Fine For Hacking A Rival Company

Ticketmaster To Pay $10 Million Fine For Hacking A Rival Company

January 02, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Ticketmaster has agreed to pay a $10 million fine after being charged with illegally accessing computer systems of a competitor repeatedly between 2013 and 2015 in an attempt to "cut [the company] off at the knees." A subsidiary of Live Nation, the California-based ticket sales and distribution company used the stolen information to gain an advantage over CrowdSurge — which merged with Songkick in 2015 and later acquired by Warner Music Group (WMG) in 2017 — by hiring a former employee to break into its tools and gain insight into the firm's operations. "Ticketmaster employees repeatedly – and illegally – accessed a competitor's computers without authorization using stolen passwords to unlawfully collect business intelligence,"  said  Acting U.S. Attorney Seth DuCharme. "Further, Ticketmaster's employees brazenly held a division-wide 'summit' at which the stolen passwords were used to access the victim company's computers, as if th
Secret Backdoor Account Found in Several Zyxel Firewall, VPN Products

Secret Backdoor Account Found in Several Zyxel Firewall, VPN Products

January 01, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Zyxel has released a patch to address a critical vulnerability in its firmware concerning a hardcoded, undocumented secret account that could be abused by an attacker to login with administrative privileges and compromise its networking devices. The flaw, tracked as  CVE-2020-29583  (CVSS score 7.8), affects  version 4.60  present in a wide-range of Zyxel devices, including Unified Security Gateway (USG), USG FLEX, ATP, and VPN firewall products. EYE researcher  Niels Teusink  reported the vulnerability to Zyxel on November 29, following which the company released a firmware patch (ZLD V4.60 Patch1) on December 18. According to the  advisory  published by Zyxel, the undocumented account ("zyfwp") comes with an unchangeable password that's not only stored in plaintext but could also be used by a malicious third-party to login to the SSH server or web interface with admin privileges. Zyxel said the hardcoded credentials were put in place to deliver automatic firmware
Microsoft Says SolarWinds Hackers Accessed Some of Its Source Code

Microsoft Says SolarWinds Hackers Accessed Some of Its Source Code

December 31, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Microsoft on Thursday revealed that the threat actors behind the SolarWinds supply chain attack were able to gain access to a small number of internal accounts and escalate access inside its internal network. The "very sophisticated nation-state actor" used the unauthorized access to view, but not modify, the source code present in its repositories, the company said. "We detected unusual activity with a small number of internal accounts and upon review, we discovered one account had been used to view source code in a number of source code repositories," the Windows maker  disclosed  in an update. "The account did not have permissions to modify any code or engineering systems and our investigation further confirmed no changes were made. These accounts were investigated and remediated." The development is the latest in the far-reaching  espionage saga  that came to light earlier in December following revelations by cybersecurity firm FireEye that attac
A Google Docs Bug Could Have Allowed Hackers See Your Private Documents

A Google Docs Bug Could Have Allowed Hackers See Your Private Documents

December 29, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Google has patched a bug in its feedback tool incorporated across its services that could be exploited by an attacker to potentially steal screenshots of sensitive Google Docs documents simply by embedding them in a malicious website. The flaw was discovered on July 9 by security researcher  Sreeram KL , for which he was awarded $3133.70 as part of Google's Vulnerability Reward Program. Many of Google's products, including Google Docs, come with a " Send feedback " or "Help Docs improve" option that allows users to send feedback along with an option to include a screenshot — something that's automatically loaded to highlight specific issues. But instead of having to duplicate the same functionality across its services, the feedback feature is deployed in Google's main website ("www.google.com") and integrated to other domains via an iframe element that loads the pop-up's content from "feedback.googleusercontent.com." Th
AutoHotkey-Based Password Stealer Targeting  US, Canadian Banking Users

AutoHotkey-Based Password Stealer Targeting US, Canadian Banking Users

December 29, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Threat actors have been discovered distributing a new credential stealer written in AutoHotkey (AHK) scripting language as part of an ongoing campaign that started early 2020. Customers of financial institutions in the US and Canada are among the primary targets for credential exfiltration, with a specific focus on banks such as Scotiabank, Royal Bank of Canada, HSBC, Alterna Bank, Capital One, Manulife, and EQ Bank. Also included in the list is an Indian banking firm ICICI Bank. AutoHotkey  is an open-source custom scripting language for Microsoft Windows aimed at providing easy hotkeys for macro-creation and software automation that allows users to automate repetitive tasks in any Windows application. The multi-stage infection chain commences with a malware-laced Excel file that's embedded with a Visual Basic for Applications (VBA)  AutoOpen  macro, which is subsequently used to drop and execute the downloader client script ("adb.ahk") via a legitimate portable AHK
A New SolarWinds Flaw Likely Had Let Hackers Install SUPERNOVA Malware

A New SolarWinds Flaw Likely Had Let Hackers Install SUPERNOVA Malware

December 26, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
An authentication bypass vulnerability in the SolarWinds Orion software may have been leveraged by adversaries as a zero-day to deploy the SUPERNOVA malware in target environments. According to an  advisory  published yesterday by the CERT Coordination Center, the SolarWinds Orion API that's used to interface with all other Orion system monitoring and management products suffers from a security flaw (CVE-2020-10148) that could allow a remote attacker to execute unauthenticated API commands, thus resulting in a compromise of the SolarWinds instance. "The authentication of the API can be bypassed by including specific parameters in the  Request.PathInfo  portion of a URI request to the API, which could allow an attacker to execute unauthenticated API commands," the advisory states. "In particular, if an attacker appends a PathInfo parameter of 'WebResource.adx,' 'ScriptResource.adx,' 'i18n.ashx,' or 'Skipi18n' to a request to a Solar
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