Tuesday, February 17, 2015

You are still exposed to technologies and fraud from the last century

In 1997, in a dimly lit room, the future of spyware began to be forged. Equation was an APT quite similar to Flame and Stuxnet that found a perfect distribution pathway in the brand new CD-ROM technology.

Silent as the best of the spies, such malware was able to install the firmware of several hard drives. It was in 2001, but we have not had any evidence of its existence until today.

That is what the new research by Kaspersky Lab says. Equation has been with us at least since 2001 in 30 countries. Actually it apparently shows some links with a development hired by the NSA. It is one of the most sophisticated malware we’ve seen so far. It can stay alive even after formatting the hard drive and has evolved along with technology.

These technologies and techniques from the past are still operational. A study by ONTSI in collaboration with the INCIBE brings out that half of Spanish users have experienced any online fraud attempt. Spam is the most widespread threat (85% of cases). 42.3% of them think they are able to solve the mess by themselves, despite they do not have enough knowledge.

Security usually makes headlines. In this case, leading companies have shown their opposition regarding Project Zero, the hacker group working for Google to seek vulnerabilities in their software. Companies are informed 90 days before of issues going public. Nevertheless this morning it’s been said it will give up to 14 additional days depending on how serious the exploit is. It will also take into consideration bank holidays as well.

The anonymity network TOR is not at its best moment. In 2015 so far there were several cases in which its architecture showed some weaknesses when the attacker has enough resources. Government agencies and cybercriminals have Tor in their spotlight, which threaten the future of the project.

Meanwhile one of the Bitcoin exchange giants based in China, called Bter, was hacked last weekend. Attackers stole 720 Bitcoins (about $ 170,000), which is the second largest bitcoin theft of the 2015 just behind the Bitstamp’s one, when crooks obtained $ 5 million.

But there is good news too. S21sec became the first Spanish company to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Europol. They both will fight cybercrime together joining expertise and product portfolio towards digital security taking into account both new and old technologies and techniques.


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