Letting aside all the bad and by this I mean ransomware, malware, skimming devices, tracking methods, hijacked surveillance cameras and so on let’s look at the bright side of what’s about to come and remind ourselves how wonderful technology can be. Thanks to technology we managed to save a lot of time and space, save a lot of trees writing down those ideas in Word Documents (activists will love this) and much more. Let’s look at the following article to get a few more in depth ideas.
5 Reasons You Should Be Optimistic About The Digital Age
Even a passing familiarity with headlines these days is bound to induce a certain degree of stress. Everyone is already on edge as a result of an election cycle that has been among the most acrimonious in recent memory (perhaps ever), with new and unpleasant revelations about both candidates emerging seemingly every week. Amidst all of the political noise, it is actually easy to miss or tune out another troubling pattern making news: a growing wave of cybercrime and digital disruptions.
Whether it’s Russian hackers meddling with the election, Wikileaks releasing troves of e-mails or entire swaths of the internet going down when a little-known company called Dyn got attacked multiple times in one day by “bots,” which can be categorized as any internet-enabled devices in homes like TVs or thermostats that are weaponized for the purposes of cyber disruption. It all sounds like futuristic Hollywood creative types getting carried away. But this is now our reality. Read more…
Yes we find mean people and cyber crooks everywhere on the internet that mean only trouble but there are also big comunities of people that share the same interest that we share like painting, music, stories and so on. This is what the Internet is all about, creating, discovering and sharing.
So let’s get enthusiastic about the future because it holds many wonderful discoveries that we can’t imagine even yet. And after all is good because the vast majority of technology users are good guys on our side. Whatever may happen there’s some group out there that will love to debunk a technology issue just for the sake of curiosity.
Technology arrived at a point where it could affect one’s life disastrously because we become more and more dependent on it. We buy goods online using digital information that can be stolen and be used in the same way we use them. This is like losing your wallet and someone else finds it and use the money to buy something.
The difference here is that you can have your wallet in your pocket and someone in another side of the country can buy goods online in your name without even knowing. You realise that the money is missing when you reach to an ATM near you to withdraw some cash or to pay for that pair of shoes at the store and wake up with the surprise that you don’t have enough money on your card.
I’m not talking only about skimming, I’m talking about technology in general and what thieves have at their disposal to use for their crimes.
An Unprecedented Digital Crime Wave is Coming
Let’s look at these technology trends:
Self-driving cars, planes & ships
Military, industrial & personal drones
Personal & professional robots
Digital home automation
Networked devices via the Internet-of-Things (IOT)
Digitally-managed digital infrastructures
Digitally-managed physical infrastructures
If I were a cyber criminal, I’d be giddy. While ransomware is a rising threat, it’s child’s play compared to what’s coming. Hollywood screenwriters are overwhelmed with possibilities. Novelists are exhausted with plots. Social media is already describing scenarios of digital death, doom and destruction. So what is the state of risk that the industry is creating? The cumulative effect is positively frightening. Read more…
We might ask at this point what are authorities doing to guard ourselves against this technology? Invent more technology! Now I’m not implying that I’m against technology, I’m writing this from a computer. I love technology, it’s a great commodity but I don’t like the idea of other people passing over personal boundaries like they don’t exist, not minding their own business and harming my finances and stored memories (photos, videos, diary etc.)
How secure are home robots?
They have blinking lights and tend to chirp constantly. One of them can vacuum your living room carpet on a schedule. Another can play games with the kids using artificial intelligence.
Yet, for homeowners (and security professionals) there’s a question about whether home robots could become an attack vector for hackers. Tapping into a live webcam feed and recording it? Stealing Wi-Fi information from an unprotected signal so you can transmit illegal wares? What makes a home robot such an ingenious ploy is that few of us think a vacuum…Read more…
This is just the beginning, with all these tools at their disposal cyber crooks can only lay down and plan their next scheme. Personally, I’m tired of all this cops and robbers game. I’m sure that there is a way out of this situation once and for all.
Today if you walk on the street AND you have a cell phone in your pocket you’re a moving red dot on someone’s desktop. It doesn’t matter if you have and IPhone or an Android device.
Now, we all knew that this was possible, what I’m saying is that it became even easier. There’s only one condition that must be meet, to be in the cover area of a wi-fi network. No, you don’t have to connect to it, you just have to be in its reach zone for the one interested in your phone to install malware, intercept calls, and receive fake SMS.
Wi-Fi can be turned into IMSI Catcher to Track Cell Phone Users Everywhere
Here’s a new danger to your smartphone security: Your mobile device can be hijacked and tracked without your knowledge.
The controversial cell phone spying tool, also known as…Read more…
This method is used by the people working in the law enforcement. But the population is soo huge and they don’t have time to listen to everyone’s little unimportant conversations about what they cooked and did yesterday. It’s used for more serious problems like intercepting terrorists and mostly law breakers.
My opinion is that if you haven’t done anything wrong and you’re not planning to then you have nothing to worry about. So you can leave the paranoia and enjoy your life without a care. Your concern should start only when owning a cell phone could be a gateway for thought control. And it isn’t, so don’t worry.
Nevertheless, you should watch out for what you install on your phone. You’re still responsible for you actions and there are bad people trying to steal your accounts and credit card information using trap apps, malware and phishing methods.
This Hack Can Silently Break Into 1 Billion Android Apps
Hong Kong-based researchers have demonstrated an attack on a massive number of Android applications, allowing them remote access to whatever accounts lie within. The apps have been downloaded more than 1 billion times, they said, making the impact widespread and severe.
The trio of researchers – Ronghai Yang, Wing Cheong Lau and Tianyu Liu from the Chinese University of Hong Kong – looked at 600 of the most popular US and Chinese Android apps. For 41 per cent of the 182 that supported single sign-on, they found problems associated with OAuth 2.0 – a standard that allows users to have their Facebook or Google accounts verify their logins to different third-party apps or websites. That means the user doesn’t have to provide additional usernames or passwords. Read more…
Beeing informed about what’s possible and what’s not will give you a more clear image of the reality of things. This will help you avoid unwanted situations, fix things and most important rid yourself of preconceptions that people are watching you just because they want to watch you.
Net neutrality is the principle that Internet service providers and governments regulating the Internet should treat all data on the Internet the same, not discriminating or charging differentially by user, content, website, platform, application, type of attached equipment, or mode of communication. The term was coined by Columbia University media law professor Tim Wu in 2003, as an extension of the longstanding concept of a common carrier, which was used to describe the role of telephone systems Wikipedia
The Internet as we know it today is quite a nice place. Everyone can open a website, create a facebook page, sell a digital product and share his opinion without getting into trouble. It’s true that it’s censored but why is that bad? Would you like to go to your facebook account sing in and see child porn and weapons ads on the sidebar?
Net neutrality is an equilibrium of all the opinions of involved people and so what you see when you open your browser is the result of two conflicting parties. The people and the businesses that offer the service. You can surf the Internet and see pictures of kittens while having adds in the same time.
UNDERSTANDING NET NEUTRALITY
From 6 – 17 July 2015, more than 100 graduate students convened at the Palais des Nations in Geneva for the 53rd annual Graduate Study Programme. The programme, hosted by the UNOG Information Service, provides an immersive experience looking into the inner workings of the United Nations, including its various agencies, funds and programmes, across key thematic areas. Students are divided into working groups, each coordinated by a different UN Agency. This year’s participating included ITU, UNCTAD, UNDP, UNOG and WMO.
After a group discussion, the ITU Working Group chose to explore net neutrality and produced a video to raise awareness about the complexity of the debate. This article is based on the video script which was written by the students in the ITU Working Group.
Net neutrality is usually referred to as the equal…Read more…
Now, this is very important because without these rules a company could pay extra money to an ISP to slow down it’s competitors website or show it’s ads much less and to an uninterested public. There were many manifestations in and outside the US where thousands of people went outside and spoke for the Internet we know Today.
Net Neutrality: What You Need to Know Now
In May 2014, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler released a plan that would have allowed companies like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon to discriminate online and create pay-to-play fast lanes.
Millions of you spoke out — and fought back.
Thanks to the huge public and political outcry, Wheeler shelved his original proposal, and on Feb. 4, 2015, he announced that he would base new Net Neutrality rules on Title II of the Communications Act, giving Internet users the strongest protections possible.
The FCC approved Wheeler’s proposal on Feb. 26, 2015. This is a watershed victory for activists who have fought for a decade to protect the open Internet.
However, now that the FCC’s Net Neutrality rules are out in the world, opponents are doing everything they can to undermine the open Internet.
What is Net Neutrality?
Net Neutrality is the Internet’s guiding principle: It preserves our right to communicate freely online. This is the definition of an open Internet.
Net Neutrality means an Internet that enables and protects free speech. It means that Internet service providers should provide us with open networks — and should not block or discriminate against any applications or content that ride over those networks. Just as your phone company shouldn’t decide who you can call and what you say on that call, your ISP shouldn’t be concerned with the content you view or post online. Read more…
Those people are still active today and keep an eye on anyone who might try to regulate the Internet in an unfair way, unbeneficial to the general public, to manipulate political point of views and similar things. We should all thank the people that already spoke for the neutrality of Internet. The next person who will do it might just as well be you.
Today we have some security updates from Google’s side. If we remember correctly Liberia had a nasty surprise yesterday. They woke up without Internet. Having a small population the situation wasn’t that hazardous but the potential of the Mirai botnet is still a problem. The attackers weren’t found and we don’t know who is going to be next and when it’s going to happen.
DDoS attack from Mirai malware ‘killing business’ in Liberia
The DDoS attacks come from the same malware responsible for last month’s disruptions in the US
The malware behind last month’s massive internet disruption in the U.S. is targeting Liberia with financially devastating results.
This week, a botnet powered by the Mirai malware has been launching distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks on IP addresses in the African country, according to security researchers.
“The DDoS is killing our business,” he said over the phone. “We have a challenge with the DDoS. We are hoping someone can stop it.”
The employee declined to have his name published because he was not authorized to speak for his company. The attacks began a few days ago, he said, but not all Liberian internet providers were affected. Read more…
The population of US was also targeted last month before the Liberia incident but because the conditions were unfavorable for a serious threat and the damage was minimum the case went unnoticed. But after Liberia’s unfortunate events, Google released a new Chrome update that can stop a DOS attack.
Google Releases Security Updates for Chrome
Google has released Chrome version 54.0.2840.87 for Windows and Mac, and version 54.0.2840.90 for Linux. These new versions address a vulnerability that, if exploited, may allow an attacker to create a denial-of-service condition.
US-CERT encourages users and administrators to review the Chrome Releases(link is external) page and apply the necessary updates.
Not all hackers are bad, well most of them are but aside from our security experts, we have ethical hackers that are on our side. They openly hack a company, person or a website with the target’s permission in order to discover vulnerabilities. They are well paid and use their skills for the greater good.
Every year there’s a conference held by ethical hackers from all over the world called Black Hat Europe and it’s usually held for three or four days. They gather up, share information make a plan and go up against the black market.
Catching Online Scammers, Dealers & Drug Dealers With DNS
Brandon Bourret sold software used to invade privacy of Photobucket customers, stealing their private images for blackmail.
Photobucket was the victim of a bizarre cybercrime case, outlined by the US Department of Justice yesterday.
Brandon Bourret of Colorado has been given a 29-month jail term in the case for computer fraud that involved intrusion into the privacy of his victims and online extortion. His accomplice Athanasios Andrianakis was earlier given five years on probation including 15 months in-house detention during which he must work for Photobucket for no pay.
According to the DOJ, in 2008 Bourret created and sold a software application called PhotoFucket which allowed users to illegally access Photobucket, a website which hosts private photo albums of customers, and seek out nude and sexually-implicit images. When the breach was detected, Photobucket upped its security, but Bourret and his co-conspirator Andrianakis were able to find new ways to continue the hack and scam. Read more…
It’s good to know that there are guys in the field ready to defend our privacy or neutralize an attack once spotted. Some of them are ex-bad-hackers. There was an attack yesterday at Photobucket where two guys managed to steal many personal photos and emails and sold them via the Internet. One was sentenced to prison and the other must do detention at home and work for Photobucket for free in that time period. Not all of them choose to use their skills for good purposes.
The following article is about a massive attack against a country. The attacker managed to shut down the internet of a WHOLE country. It sounds more like a movie scenario but it’s true. It’s the first time actually that I heard of an attack this big. I know that hackers can manage to do a successful attack on a political figure, a very big business but a whole country?
This article is from Forbes everybody so you bet that it’s damn serious.
Someone Just Used The Mirai Botnet To Knock An Entire Country Offline
Last month, the Mirai botnet emerged from the shadows and directed its fury at security expert Brian Krebs. A few weeks later, the DNS servers at Dyn fell victim and many of the biggest sites on the Internet went dead for millions of Americans. Now it appears that Mirai knocked an entire country offline.
Only temporarily, mind you, and the target was… Read more…
IF you read the article you may notice that Libia has a population of 4.5 Million, and only 10% have Internet so that’s half a million. There are only 2 internet service providers and they both share the same optic fiber cable. The attack wasn’t that big of a deal on a Whole World point of view.
The problem here is that it was an attack and a successful one. Whatever the sender wanted to find out, he did. It’s a functional digital nuke.
Mirai botnet attackers are trying to knock an entire country offline
One of the largest Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attacks happened this week and almost nobody noticed.
Since the cyberattack on Dyn two weeks ago, the internet has been on edge, fearing another massive attack that would throw millions off the face of the web. The attack was said to be upwards of 1.1Tbps — more than double the attack a few weeks earlier on security reporter Brian Krebs’ website, which was about 620Gbps in size, said to be one of the largest at the time. The attack was made possible by the Mirai botnet, an open-source botnet that anyone can use, which harnesses the power of insecure Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
This week, another Mirai botnet, known as Botnet 14, began targeting a small, little-known African country, sending it almost entirely offline each time. Read more…
Now imagine yourself sitting at the computer, as usual, preparing to upload that photo you took a few hours ago and about to check some facebook comments when suddenly in the middle of your session the browser won’t load the page. You refresh the page and you see on the screen “No internet service”.
After you try again you restart your computer, you check the router and you see a red led light flashing. After an hour you become tired of waiting and you call your internet service provider just to hear these words “We are having some technical problems. Sorry for the inconvenience.”
Right from the start, I can say that the good guys are on higher grounds. Here’s why:
First of all, nobody likes ransomware on their computer and the vast majority of people are not hackers but targets so if there’s something that they can do to get rid of it they will do it.
Secondly, there are a lot of security companies that sell anti-virus software so every one of them is trying to make theirs more powerful than the other. A high competition means a higher interest to upgrade it.
Then you have the tech guys that are well paid from big companies to invest their time in understanding what are the hackers motives and methods so that they can come up with solutions to those attacks.
Five Ways That Good Guys Share More Than Bad Guys
It takes a lot for me to write a cybersecurity blog post these days. I spend most of my writing time working on my PhD. Articles like Nothing Brings Banks Together Like A Good Hack drive me up the wall, however, and a Tweet rant is insufficient. What fired me up, you might ask? Please read the following excerpt: [Troels] Oerting, with no small dose of grudging admiration, says his adversaries excel at something that can’t be addressed with deep pockets or killer software: They’re superb networkers. “The organized crime groups in cyber are sharing much better than we are at the moment,” says Oerting, a Dane with a square jaw and the watchful eyes of a cop who’s investigated the underworld for 35 years. “They are sharing methodologies, knowledge, tools, practices—what works and what doesn’t.”
Statements like these are regularly submitted without evidence. In response, I provide five sources of evidence why organized crime groups do not share more than defenders.
1. Solution providers share. Both commercial and not-for-profit solution providers share enormous amounts of information on the security landscape. Some of it is free, and some of it is sold as products or consulting. Thousands of security companies and not-for-profit providers compete for your attention, producing white papers, Webinars, and other resources. You might argue that all of them claim to be the answer to your problem. However, this situation is infinitely better than the 1980s and early 1990s. Back then, hardly any solutions, or even security companies and organizations, existed at all.
Criminal solution providers share, but they do so by selling their wares. This is true for the open world as well, but the volume of the open world is orders of magnitude greater. Read more…
Other good news is that websites and forums are starting to close and ban hacker communities due to the fact that hacker attacks are getting more and more serious.
A webmaster will avoid getting into trouble and harming their website because of a few bad intended users.
Hackforums Shutters Booter Service Bazaar
Perhaps the most bustling marketplace on the Internet where people can compare and purchase so-called “booter” and “stresser” subscriptions — attack-for-hire services designed to knock Web sites offline — announced last week that it has permanently banned the sale and advertising of these services.
On Friday, Oct. 28, Jesse LaBrocca — the administrator of the popular English-language hacking forum Hackforums[dot]net — said he was shutting down the “server stress testing” (SST) section of the forum. The move comes amid heightened public scrutiny of the SST industry, which has been linked to several unusually powerful recent attacks and is responsible for the vast majority of denial-of-service (DOS) attacks on the Internet today.
The administrator of Hackforums bans the sale and advertising of server stress testing (SST) services, also known as “booter” or “stresser” online attack-for-hire services.
“Unfortunately once again the few ruin it for the many,” LaBrocca wrote under his Hackforums alias “Omniscient.” “I’m personally disappointed that this is the path I have to take in order to protect the community. I loathe having to censor material that could be beneficial to members. But I need to make sure that we continue to exist and given the recent events I think it’s more important that the section be permanently shut down.” Read more…
The websites we are registering on are protecting our privacy, PayPal, Facebook, Google and so on are adopting new methods of log in security so that your account are being kept safe. All this said know that there are powerful forces working in your favor in order to make the Internet a safe place for all to share and enjoy.
There are many reasons for why a Hacker might target a computer, for fun, feeling of power, money or political reasons. They will also try to gain access to a computer so that they could use it for money laundry and bait purposes. They can attempt an attack from another computer virtually and leave it once they are done. His first concerns are his IP, MAC address, location coordinates and even desktop clock.
The Scrap Value of a Hacked PC, Revisited
A few years back, when I was a reporter at The Washington Post, I put together a chart listing the various ways that miscreants can monetize hacked PCs. The project was designed to explain simply and visually to the sort of computer user who can’t begin to fathom why miscreants would want to hack into his PC. “I don’t bank online, I don’t store sensitive information on my machine! I only use it to check email. What could hackers possibly want with this hunk of junk?,” are all common refrains from this type of user.
I recently updated the graphic (below) to include some of the increasingly prevalent malicious uses for hacked PCs, including hostage attacks — such as ransomware — and reputation hijacking on social networking forums. See the graphic and read more…
You might start considering strengthening up your computer security if you haven’t done so by now. Even if you did, new hacking methods appear every week or so, there are even methods that we don’t know about yet. Revising and doing a check once in a while is a good thing. It’s like cleaning your house every spring. See what new prevention methods appeared, new hacker baits, top most recommended anti-virus for this year and so on.
Tools for a Safer PC
An important aspect of securing any system is the concept of “defense-in-depth,” or having multiple layers of security and not depending on any one approach or technology to block all attacks. Here are some links to tools and approaches that I have found useful in stopping malware from invading a PC. Your mileage may vary.
Learn, Memorize, Practice the 3 Rules
Follow Krebs’s 3 Basic Rules for online safety, and you will drastically reduce the chances of handing control over your computer to the bad guys. In short, 1) If you didn’t go looking for it, don’t install it; 2) If you installed, update it. 3) If you no longer need it, get rid of it! For more on these rules, check out this blog post.
Keep Up-to-Date with Updates!
It shouldn’t be this way, but the truth is that most software needs regular updating. As a result, staying on top of the latest security updates can sometimes feel like a nagging chore. Not all software includes auto-update features that let you know about new patches, or if they do, many of these take their sweet time let you know. Fortunately, there are some tools that make it easier to learn when security updates are available. Secunia’s Personal Software Inspector is popular option. Another is File Hippo’s Update Checker. Both are free.
Going trough that article and applying those steps won’t take more than a day. It’s better to spend a day at home enjoying your coffee and finding new interesting things than spending a day at the bank just to come home and do what you avoided doing in the first place.
Surveillance cameras and webcams have many things in common, we know what they are, but the one that I want to draw your attention towards is their vulnerability. As much as I like to think about them that they’re of great use to chat with family and friends or keep us safe I can’t deny the fact that sometimes they are easily accessible from outside especially if the software that runs them is outdated and it doesn’t have any means of protection.
We just add a weak wi-fi protection scenario to this situation and the end result is that anyone with some basic hacking skills can access them. Mostly it’s for fun but there are other cases when these attacks are used to steal information.
Mostly it’s for fun but there are other cases when these attacks are used to steal information. Even for fun, it isn’t pleasant to find a recording on the internet after a while with you doing your bed. Even Mark Zuckerberg likes doing his bed in pace without worrying about someone watching him.
Mark Zuckerberg tapes over his webcam. Should you?
Does covering his laptop camera and microphone with tape make Facebook’s boss paranoid, or are they really after him? Probably a bit of both
Don’t worry, Mark Zuckerberg: Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t after you. And as the richest millennial in the world, you can probably be confident that someone, somewhere, is after you.
Which is why it makes perfect sense that you’ve joined the growing number of people doing a little DIY hardware hacking, and disabling their computer’s webcam and microphone. Even if a sneaky hacker does manage to penetrate your security, they’re not going to be seeing you in your tighty whities.
Yes folks, Zuckerberg tapes over his webcam. The billionaire made the (accidental?) revelation in a Facebook post intended to promote Instagram reaching its latest milestone of half a billion monthly active users. Read more…
The way attackers manage to access your camera is by installing malware on your computer, if you don’t have an anti-virus, a firewall, secure internet connection and the only thing that you have is bad internet habits your pretty much easy prey. Don’t worry, IT security experts aren’t exceptions.
Are Hackers Using Your Webcam to Watch You?
Steven Fox, an IT security expert, was chatting with friends on his webcam one night when he started receiving some strange emails. Imagine his surprise when he opened one and found images of himself chatting.
His webcam had been hacked by a “script kiddie,” a person who uses malware written by someone else to show off their skills at accessing other computer systems, says Fox. He quickly detached the webcam, but he had to re-install his operating system after he found malware installed on his computer. “It was painful, but it was a learning experience,” says Fox, who writes a column for the journal of the Information Systems Security Association.
The risks of webcams
Webcams may let you stay in touch with friends and family, but they also pose risks of people hacking into them and spying on you. A recent Pennsylvania lawsuit accused a school district of using webcams on school-issued laptops to spy on students and their families. And in China, a sophisticated network of hackers known as GhostNet has cracked 1,295 webcams in 103 countries.
Since most laptops now come with a built-in webcam, it’s critical to understand the risks, says Richard Stiennon, a malware expert with IT-Harvest, a research firm that specializes in Internet security. “We all have to become aware that our every action could be watched,” says Stiennon.
How hackers attack webcams
Most hackers utilize so-called Trojan horse attacks, says Stiennon. You click on an attachment or download a piece of music or video infected with malware, and a hacker is able to remotely control your PC’s functions.
Fortunately, you can take steps to secure your webcam. Experts offer these do’s and don’ts…Read more…
Taping your webcam and microphone, avoiding unknown attachments and emails, installing an anti-virus and so on is very simple and effective but the surveillance cameras, well that’s another thing.
Hacked Cameras, DVRs Powered Today’s Massive Internet Outage
A massive and sustained Internet attack that has caused outages and network congestion today for a large number of Web sites was launched with the help of hacked “Internet of Things” (IoT) devices, such as CCTV video cameras and digital video recorders, new data suggests.
Earlier today cyber criminals began training their attack cannons on Dyn, an Internet infrastructure company that provides critical technology services to some of the Internet’s top destinations. The attack began creating problems for Internet users reaching an array of sites, including Twitter, Amazon, Tumblr, Reddit, Spotify and Netflix.
A depiction of the outages caused by today’s attacks on Dyn, an Internet infrastructure company. Source: Downdetector.com.
At first, it was unclear who or what was behind the attack on Dyn. But over the past few hours, at least one computer security firm has come out saying the attack involved Mirai, the same malware strain that was used in the record 620 Gpbs attack on my site last month. At the end September 2016, the hacker responsible for creating the Mirai malware released the source code for it, effectively letting anyone build their own attack army using Mirai. Read more…
Fortunately, as the internet grows and these attacks are happening more and more often people are starting to take the subject of Security more and more serious and so strengthen the protection measures. Indeed it would be nice if we all surfed the internet in pace clicking everywhere but not everyone is nice and good.