Items tagged with Hacking

Equifax is still trying to dig its way out from under the bad press and an angry public after a hack of its database gave access to personal information on 143 million Americans. Equifax offered those affected by the security breach the ability to lock their credit reports to prevent the stolen information leaked in the hack from being used to open new credit in their names. However, things just keep going from bad to worse for Equifax (and everyone in general). Equifax used a PIN that "protected" each user's credit report to prevent the information from being used, but the PINs were reportedly... Read more...
If you thought putting Homer Simpson in charge of a nuclear power plant seemed like a scary proposition, well, you would be right. But sometimes truth is stranger (and in this case, scarier) than fiction. Such is the case with security outfit Symantec reporting that hackers have been targeting the energy sector in Europe and North America since at least 2011. And if that's not frightening enough, they have kicked up their efforts in the past couple of years and even managed to breach companies that manage nuclear facilities in the United States. The group behind these attacks is known as Dragonfly.... Read more...
Would you trust your life to a hacker? No, of course not, and neither does the US Food and Drug Administration. The FDA issued a recall of nearly half a million pacemakers after the organization discovered a vulnerability that makes several models susceptible to hacking. Once exploited, a hacker would be able to control the device's pacing and deplete the batteries. "Many medical devices - including St. Jude Medical's implantable cardiac pacemakers—contain configurable embedded computer systems that can be vulnerable to cybersecurity intrusions and exploits. As medical devices become increasingly... Read more...
Here we go again. WikiLeaks, the international non-profit whistleblower that publishes secret information to the web, has been dumping classified documents outlining various hacking tools and malware used by the United States Central Intelligence Agency. These documents are part of what WikiLeaks calls Vault 7, the latest of which contains information on the CIA's "CouchPotato" tool. According to WikiLeaks, CouchPotato is a remote tool for intercepting video streams as either an AVI video file or capturing still images of frames from the stream as JPEGs, presumably to save space. In the latter... Read more...
A team of scientists from the University of Washington have figured out how to infect a computer using malicious code inside DNA. This attack vector isn't aimed at your everyday PC sitting on your desk at home or in the office; this hack aims directly at the infrastructure around the DNA transcription and analysis industry. The team behind the hack was concerned about the security with that infrastructure after finding basic vulnerabilities in some of the open-source software used in labs that analyze DNA all around the world. While the basic issues with the software could be vulnerable... Read more...
For the past several months, WikiLeaks has been publishing information related to exploits and hacking tools that had been used by the United States government at some point. The project is known as Vault 7 and seems to contain mostly older exploits, though it is not clear if some of the malware has been updated for modern platforms. Not all of it is aimed at Windows. In fact, the latest documents reference macOS and Linux hacks that were part of the US Central Intelligence Agency's Imperial program.Image Source: Flickr (Tony Webster)The first of these is called Achilles. According to the documentation,... Read more...
Many technology companies have in place bug bounty programs that reward security researchers who submit discovered vulnerabilities in the products and services they offer. It is a win-win proposition in which technology companies are alerted to potentially crippling security holes, and hackers are compensated for their efforts. Apple is among the companies with a bug bounty program, though some researchers are choosing to hold onto discovered vulnerabilities, or worse yet, sell them on the underground market. Apple's is relatively new to the bug bounty scene. Ivan Krstic, head of Apple's security... Read more...
Most wireless routers are equipped with a series of LEDs to indicate things like network connectivity and activity, though if a router has been compromised with malware, those blinking lights could reveal more than the owner bargained for. Using specially crafted malware, an attacker could instruct those LEDs to transmit data in a binary format.Image Source: TP-Link The attack was outlined in a paper by a team of researches from the Cyber Security Research Center at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. It is the same team of security researchers that previously wrote about data exfiltration... Read more...
New and used games retailer GameStop has found itself in a bit of a rough patch these days. The company recently reported less-than-stellar fourth quarter results and is planning to close at least 150 brick-and-mortar locations, and perhaps as many as 225. That is on top of the store locations it closed just a few years ago. While it deals with ways to increase revenue and profits, it now finds itself investigating a potential security breach that may have compromised credit card and customer data. Security hound KrebsOnSecurity heard from two unnamed sources in the financial industry that they... Read more...
The latest bombshell to come out of WikiLeaks’ Vault7 series of leaks from the CIA, exposes a tool codenamed “Grasshopper”, which allows operatives to deploy persistent surveillance and hacking payloads on target Windows-based computer systems and remain undetected from popular anti-malware and anti-virus tools.WikiLeaks has an array of documentation on-line, including an in-depth user’s guide for Grasshopper. The user’s guide explains that Grasshopper is “a software tool used to build custom installers for target computers running Microsoft Windows operating systems”, which seems straightforward... Read more...
Apple is not going to play ball with a group of hackers that is threatening to remotely wipe hundreds of millions of iPhone devices if the Cupertino outfit refuses to pay a ransom. While the hackers claim to have a large cache of iCloud and other Apple email account data at their disposal, Apple insists that its systems and servers remain secure and have not been infiltrated."There have not been any breaches in any of Apple's systems including iCloud and Apple ID," an Apple spokesperson told multiple media outlets. "The alleged list of email addresses and passwords appears to have been obtained... Read more...
Security researchers at Cybellum, a PC security firm in Tel Aviv, Israel, have discovered a rather nasty new zero-day attack that allows remote attackers to hijack popular antivirus programs and turn them into malicious agents. The technique is called DoubleAgent, named after the fact that a compromised antivirus agent might give the illusion that it's protecting a PC when it's actually installing malware. "DoubleAgent exploits a 15 year old vulnerability which works on all versions of Microsoft Windows, starting from Windows XP right up to the latest release of Windows 10. The sad, but plain fact... Read more...
Bitcoin seems to be the currency of choice when it comes to demanding ransoms, and that is because culprits demanding payment can hide behind a pseudonym (Bitcoin itself is not actually anonymous). So it is no surprise that a hacking organization has instructed Apple to fork over a Bitcoin ransom in exchange for not leaking a cache of iCloud and other Apple email accounts belonging to hundreds of millions of iPhone owners.The hackers call themselves the "Turkish Crime Family." In addition to accepting Bitcoin, the group has told Apple it would also be fine with being paid in Ethereum, which is... Read more...
There are many different methods of hacking. Most of them involve some sort of software code, whether it is installing malware on a system or hacking a vulnerability to gain unauthorized access to a system or device. The Internet of Things (IoT) category is especially susceptible to hacking due to a surprising lack of basic security practices. However, researchers at the University of Michigan discovered a different way of wreaking havoc, and it involves sound waves. What the group of researchers found is that accelerometers can be manipulated through sound. This is called an analog acoustic injection... Read more...
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