Welcome to our weekly roundup, where we share what you need to know about the cybersecurity news and events that happened over the past few days.
Below you’ll find a quick recap of topics followed by links to news articles and/or our blog posts providing additional insight. Be sure to check back each Friday for highlights of the goings-on each week!
Perhaps emboldened by the success of their peers, attackers have been releasing more ransomware families and variants with alarming frequency. The latest one added to the list is R980 (detected by Trend Micro as RANSOM_CRYPBEE.A). R980 has been found to arrive via spam emails, or through compromised websites.
The Internet of Things (IoT)—the network of devices embedded with capabilities to collect and exchange information—has long been attracting the attention of cybercriminals as it continues to gain momentum in terms of its adoption. Gartner has estimated that more than 20.8 billion IoT devices will be in use by 2020; IoT will be leveraged by over half of major business processes and systems.
The second Tuesday of August has arrived, which means one thing for Microsoft users: Patch Tuesday. Relatively speaking, August’s batch of patches is relatively light, with only nine bulletins, although five are rated as Critical.
Over the last year, synchronized and coordinated attacks against critical infrastructure have taken center stage. Remote cyber intrusions at three Ukrainian regional electric power distribution companies in December 2015 left approximately 225,000 customers without power. Malware, like BlackEnergy, is being specially developed to target supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems.
Making up roughly 65% of the market, Qualcomm builds chips that power most of the world’s mobile phones. Unfortunately, an Israeli-based firm called Checkpoint recently uncovered major security flaws in the chip, dubbed QuadRooter, that could affect as many as 900 million people. The flaws could leave users exposed to a number of cyberattacks, including “privilege escalation for the purpose of gaining root access to a device.”
The Russian hackers who exposed a pro-Hillary Clinton bias at the Democratic National Committee have reportedly hacked even more Democratic emails than previously believed. The cybercriminals gained access to the correspondence of more than 100 Democratic Party officials and groups, apparently targeting Clinton campaign officials and party operatives, according to the New York Times.
Concerns are growing over the possibility of a hacked presidential election. Roughly 70 percent of states in the U.S. use some form of electronic voting. Hackers tell CBS News problems with electronic voting machines have been around for years, but now with millions heading to the polls in three months, security experts are sounding the alarm.
Specific motivations behind any targeted hack make them successful to win the game against an organization’s layered defense systems no matter what sort of technology or threat intelligence that the organization uses. Why doesn’t the security industry develop a similar technology to track and hunt for cybersecurity threats and adversaries?
America’s biggest banks are joining forces to combat the growing threat from cybercriminals, setting up a group that will work on preparing for attacks and improving information sharing, according to the Wall Street Journal. The group of eight includes Bank of America, Bank of New York Mellon, Citi, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, State Street, Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase.
While cybersecurity remains top of mind for healthcare organizations, the importance of safeguarding servers and computers is underscored in the face of large attacks. The recent cyberattack on Phoenix-based Banner Health, which is the largest reported breach to date affecting 3.7 million individuals, has
health systems re-examining their cybersecurity defenses.
Australia launched its first online census this week but was quickly forced to shut it down after what the government said were multiple denial-of-service attacks, which purposefully inundate websites with automated requests to cause shutdowns. The Australian Bureau of Statistics said it closed down the online census form out of precaution after a fourth attack on Tuesday.
With the number of cyber incidents identified by Australian organizations more than doubling in the past year, PwC is using an online game to give enterprises first-hand experience of what it means to face a cyberattack. Participants are split into two teams – attackers and responders – and points are awarded based on outcome.
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