Friday, September 16, 2016

Invisible weapons

One of the best sitcoms that the Cold War gave us was Get Smart. The main character was Maxwell Smart, a secret agent (Agent 86), a bit clumsy and indiscreet, constantly confronted to his enemies from Kaos, who wanted to rule the world. In each mission, Smart was usually given a weapon or a rather peculiar tool. The most famous was his shoe phone, which predicted the arrival of mobile phones. 

Although he was somewhat clumsy, Smart was a good shooter and often had hidden weapons inside lighters and watches. The Register published a note stating that French hackers would be smuggling pen-guns that can fire bullets of .22 caliber. The website ensures that contraband in other countries is nothing compared to how this business is developed in France. Each gun would be worth 150 euros. The discovery was made by Pernet, from Trend Micro, when he investigated cybercriminal forums globally. Pernet found out that these weapons are sold only through French forums, where they also smuggle euthanasia kits, among other services in the dark web.

The Register also talks about how a group of cybercriminals claims to have hacked a series of accounts and logins from some government agencies such as NASA, the US Navy or the Federal Aviation Administration. According to the website, they have some US Navy accounts that are worth 3.5 bitcoins (around 2,000 euros).

Collin Powell has also been one of the names of the week as Dc Leaks has leaked a great number of personal emails that the American ex Secretary of State had written during 26 months. That’s what Security Affairs published. In these leaked emails, Powell sharply criticized Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, especially Trump, who calls ‘national disgrace and international pariah’. 

Also uncertain is the path that companies will have to undertake regarding the recently agreed EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). According to Helpnet Security website, organizations are not ready for this change of legislation. Only 55% of the companies are well briefed on the matter. According to the article, more than half of the US businesses have European citizens' personal data and around 68% of the companies don’t have a comprehensive plan in place for how they will respond to this change. 

Another issue we have known this week is that more than 35,000 ARRIS cable modems are at risk from firmware dumper bot. Researcher Bernardo Rodríguez assures these modems would be located in EEUU, Mexico and Brazil, but that the number of affected devices could be much higher. 

One of the characters in Get Smart was Jaime, a cyborg created by Kaos. Despite being a robot, Jaime had feelings and Smart managed to convince him to change sides and become part of Control. In an article published by Helpnet Security, researcher Stuart Winter-Tear gives his opinion about the use of artificial intelligence in cybersecurity. In June this year we heard in the news that artificial intelligence market would grow by 75% in 2021. Winter-Tear wonders if it could really become the end of cybercriminals attacks, or this is just snake oil. The answer, of course, is still a mistery.  

Original Image Source: Freeimages


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