Items tagged with Malware

It has been suggested that the microprocessors we use each and every day could pack in a bit more than we bargained for; namely, the tools needed for spying or undetectable access. And unfortunately, according to security researcher and developer Damien Zammit, there's a potential reason to be concerned over the "ME" or Management Engine module found in all Intel chipsets manufactured after the Core 2 era. If you've built your own Intel-based PC in recent years, or have at least reinstalled the OS and needed to install all of the drivers on your own, you've probably noticed a piece of software... Read more...
If you've ever tried to link someone to a Google Maps URL, you'll undoubtedly understand the benefit of URL shorteners. With them, we can take grossly long URLs and shorten them to a mere fraction of their original length, allowing your Facebook status update to retain a clean look and actually put a few words alongside a URL in a tweet. There's a reason services like Google Maps and Twitter offer their own URL shorteners... they're convenient and useful. According to a new report released out of Cornell Tech, however, we should be showing some concern over the use of URL shorteners. There's a... Read more...
Thought the Stagefright saga was all behind us? Think again. In a new paper published by Israel's NorthBit, we're shown that Stagefright can still prove to be a serious threat to older devices, with some able to be cracked in as little as 20 seconds. If you're still toting around a Nexus 5, LG G3, HTC One, or Samsung Galaxy S5, you should take note. Samsung's Galaxy S5, released in 2014, is affected by Metaphor As a bit of a recap, Stagefright isn't just one bug; rather, it's an overarching vulnerability that includes a number of different bugs that affects Android devices versioned 2.2 and newer.... Read more...
Over the past few years, ransomware has become an ever growing threat to enterprise and personal users alike. If you’re unfamiliar with ransomware, it’s a piece of malware that infects a system, usually encrypts a user’s personal data – like photos, office documents, PDFs and the like – and then forces the user to pay a ransom for the decryption key.To date all of the known, fully-functional ransomware attacks have targeted systems running Microsoft Windows, but a brand new variant has hit the web targeting systems running Apple’s Mac OS X.An Apple MacBook Running OS XPalo Alto Networks discovered... Read more...
A medical center located in Hollywood, California, paid hackers 40 bitcoins worth nearly $17,000 in U.S. currency to decrypt its files that were being held ransom. The ransom amount is far less than the $3.6 million that was being thrown around when news of the security breach went public, but is no less disheartening that those responsible were able to pull something like this off. Things went sour for Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center when malware spread on its computer systems earlier this month. Known as ransomware, the malware encrypted critical files across the medical center's network,... Read more...
Could you go a full day without using your PC? It might not be all that difficult on a casual basis, but for workers at Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center, they've had the challenge of servicing patients without the aid of any computer systems for over a week due to a malware outbreak and subsequent ransom demand.A local computer consultant said the ransom is in the neighborhood of 9,000 Bitcoins, which is about $3.6 million in U.S. currency. The hackers responsible likely chose Bitcoin as their payment method of choice because the cryptocurrency is anonymous and difficult to trace, especially... Read more...
If you’d like to take a trip down memory lane to a simpler time when MS-DOS was still a big part of computing life and most Americans hadn’t begun to “surf the web”, the Internet Archive has put on a display a virtual museum of computer malware from the 80s and early 90s. But this isn’t just a “static” museum where you look at a few screenshots of decades old malicious code; it’s actually interactive. “Once they infected a system, they would sometimes show animation or messages that you had been infected,” writes the Internet Archive about its Malware Museum. The Internet Archive in its infinite... Read more...
It seems certain that we've all managed to wind up on a website at some point in time that had misleading elements, such as fake download buttons. While piracy is going to be the first thing that springs to many minds when this kind of sketchiness is brought up, it's hardly exclusive to that area. Some websites that host completely legitimate software still have misleading advertising, and let's face it: we've been dealing with it for way too long. Well, if Google has its way, we're not going to have to worry about such misleading advertising in the future. Back in November, the company released... Read more...
Dozens of Starwood hotels around the country were hit with malware that enabled cyber thieves to access credit and debit card information from point of sale terminals. The malware affected a variety of locations on Starwood properties, including restaurants, gift shops, and other places where customers might have swiped a payment card. A total of 54 Starwood hotels (PDF) fell prey to the malware, including places like the Walt Disney World Dolphin - A Sheraton Hotel in Orlando, Florida, and over a dozen Westin hotels spanning the continental U.S. and Hawaii. According to a statement put out by... Read more...
Security firm Lookout has just revealed what could be one of the most hard-hitting pieces of malware to ever hit Android. It doesn't have an official name, except to be referred to as "trojanized adware", and right from the top, we can tell you that if you only stick to downloading apps through Google's Play Store, you have nothing to worry about. There are two things that make this piece of malware so severe. First, it's effectively wrapped around legitimate apps. Users can download these, such as Facebook and Snapchat, and install them normally. Nothing will look out-of-the-ordinary, and Google... Read more...
It's hard to argue that "Internet of Things" (IoT) devices can enrich our lives. From making it easier to moderate temperature in our homes to securing them, IoT is going to be a big part of our future. Unfortunately, that does lead to one problem: as more and more devices get rolled out, the inevitability is that we're going to encounter more and more vulnerabilities. Once such example is with security cameras, of which security firm Incapsula estimates there are 245 million operating around the world. This isn't the first time vulnerabilities have been discovered with such cameras. Back in 2013,... Read more...
The researchers at Palo Alto Networks are working overtime thanks to plenty of new mobile exploits creeping up seemingly every day. Recently, the firm has been responsible for a couple of big stories revolving around Apple's iOS. Back in August, it found that over 225,000 Apple accounts were stolen from jailbroken devices, and just a couple of weeks ago, it clued us in to the XcodeGhost malware, which Apple itself managed to let slip into its official store. Now, we're given news of more malware, but fortunately for those outside of Asia, it looks... Read more...
When we usually think of traditional computer viruses, we think of software that is meant to harm machines, turn them into mindless drones that do the bidding of their new master, or exploit the rightful owner’s personal data. However, Symantec recently shed some new light on a virus — first discovered in 2014 — that infects devices not to cause destruction, but to shore up their defenses against true security threats. Symantec first became aware of Linux.Wifatch back in January, but is just now becoming aware of the full scope of its capabilities. While most traditional malware is designed with... Read more...
Apple might have one of the most secure app stores on the planet, but as with all things secure, someone is bound to find a hole and waltz right on in. Such is the case with whomever modified Apple's official coding software Xcode to bundle malware with any app compiled with it. That sounds simple, but despite the origin being China, this malware is far-reaching. According to security firm Palo Alto Networks, a malicious version of Xcode was released to Chinese networks about six months ago. While the software is free to registered developers, some users in China took advantage of this unofficial... Read more...
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