Articles about Fbi

Judge rules FBI can hack any time, any, place, anywhere

A federal district court in Virginia has ruled that the FBI has the right to hack into computers around the world without getting a local warrant, and without any review by courts. The ruling, by US District Judge Henry Morgan, comes during the prosecution of Edward Matish. Matish is one of the 100-plus suspects arrested …
Iain Thomson, 24 Jun 2016
Onions

Tor onion hardening will be tear-inducing for feds

The University of California wants to defeat deanonymisation with a hardened version of the Tor browser. The uni boffins are with the Tor Project testing an address space layout randomisation (ASLR) -esque technique dubbed Selfrando. It is hoped the technique described in the paper Selfrando: Securing the Tor Browser against …
Darren Pauli, 23 Jun 2016
Mark Zuckerberg's laptop

Zuck covers up mic and cam pickup because sharing isn't always good

A PR snapshot of Mark Zuckerberg's desk has shown quite how seriously the king of the information sharing economy takes his own privacy. On Tuesday, the Behoodied One shared an at-work picture to celebrate hitting 500 million active monthly users on Instagram. But a closer look by California startup employee Chris Olson shows …
Iain Thomson, 22 Jun 2016
Mitch McConnell

US Senate strikes down open-access FBI hacking warrant by just one honest vote

The US Senate has struck down an amendment that would have allowed the FBI to track internet histories and communications without judicial oversight, but a re-vote could be called as soon as today due to Senate rules. The amendment [PDF] to the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act would have …
Iain Thomson, 22 Jun 2016
Screenshot from the movie Airplane!

'Plane Hacker' Roberts hacks cows

"Plane Hacker" Chris Roberts managed to make it to Israel before delivering a barnstorming presentation at the nation's Cyber Week security conference. The larger-than-life Highland Games participant told delegates how he discovered it was possible to hack milking machines in the wake of 2014's Scottish referendum result. …
John Leyden, 21 Jun 2016

Pressure mounts against Rule 41 – the FBI's power to hack Tor, VPN users on sight

The campaign against Rule 41 – which will give cops and Feds in America the power to hack people's computers around the world – has kicked up a gear. Leaders of the US House of Representatives and Senate got a letter today urging them to block the rule change before it becomes permanent in December. The proposed legislative …
Iain Thomson, 21 Jun 2016

Kremlin wants to shoot the Messenger, and WhatsApp to boot

Russian media outlets report that laws mandating encryption backdoors have been tabled in the Duma. If accurate, you could expect an exodus of US services from the country. This Russian-language report, once the Vulture South hack was able to untangle translations like “proposed a fine messenger”, sets down the basics: those …

FBI's iPhone paid-for hack should be barred, say ex-govt officials

The FBI's purchase of a hack to get into the San Bernardino shooter's iPhone should not have been allowed. That's according to a new paper from two former US government cybersecurity officials, Ari Schwartz and Rob Knake. In their paper [PDF] they dig into the current vulnerability equities process (VEP), disclosed in 2014, …
Kieren McCarthy, 17 Jun 2016

Feds warn of skyrocketing business compromise scams

The FBI is warning that businesses have handed some US$3.1 billion to email scammers, a whopping 1,300 percent increase in 18 months. Businesses are tricked into sending the cash to would-be chief executive officers who have sufficient company information, obtained through open source searching or hacking, that makes the …
Team Register, 17 Jun 2016
Watson Power7 cluster. Pic: IBM

FBI expands code theft charges against Chinese national

A Chinese national first arrested in December will face expanded charges over stealing source code in a Manhattan court on Thursday. The Justice Department's superseding indictment here says Xu Jiaqiang will appear in court on Thursday June 16 at White Plains. Originally arrested in December 2015 on a single count, Xu is now …

Apple starts clock on HTTPS app rule

Apple says that iOS app developers will need to adopt HTTPS security before the year is out. Speaking in a session (iOS or Safari required) at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference, head of security engineering and architecture Ivan Krstić announced that effective at the end of this calendar year, Apple will mandate the use …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Jun 2016
Super-villain Dr Evil puts finger to lip in scheming manner, asks for one million dollars. Pic: New Line Cinema

Apple nominated for Internet Hero of the Year, Donald Trump for Villain

IPBill It's that time of the year again, and plucky little indie outlet Apple has been nominated for the internet hero of the year award at the 2016 UK Internet Industry Awards, which has also nominated Donald Trump as the villain of the year. The nominations, which are “based on crowdsourced suggestions from the public with a final …
Upset man in suit and drinking liquor. Photo by Shutterstock

Hackers targeting SWIFT banks also targeted US moneymen: Hedge funds at risk

The Lazarus Group of hackers, blamed for a recent run of attacks against mainly Asian banks linked through the SWIFT network, is now suspected of targeting a mid-market US bank. Evidence uncovered by threat detection firm eSentire suggests that the Lazarus crew (which is also the chief suspect in the 2014 Sony Pictures hack) …
John Leyden, 13 Jun 2016
Poison pill

Crafty plan to give FBI warrantless access to browser histories axed

A sly attempt to grant the FBI warrantless access to people's browser histories in the US has been shot down by politicians. Unfortunately, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) Amendments Act of 2015, which would have brought in some privacy safeguards for Americans, was cut down in the crossfire. The ECPA …
Iain Thomson, 11 Jun 2016
hacker

Did you know there's a mega cybercrime backlog in Ireland? Now you do

As part of its new five year plan, the Garda Síochána will up its efforts to tackle cyber crime after “a lack of investment in technology and resources has led to a widely reported back-log of cases”. “[T]o ensure Ireland can protect itself from cyber attack from rogue States and individual criminal elements an holistic all-of …

Sysadmin 'fesses up to wrecking his former employer's IT systems

A former sysadmin with HP-spinoff Agilent has pleaded guilty to intentionally damaging the company's systems after he was laid off. Kenneth Kezeor, 47, worked for Varian from 1997 until 2010, when it was bought by Agilent. Two years later, he was laid off as part of a general staff reduction. He did not take the news well, …
Kieren McCarthy, 09 Jun 2016

Oooooklahoma! Where the cops can stop and empty your bank cards – on just a hunch

Police in Oklahoma are deploying an electronic scanner that can drain currency from prepaid credit cards seized at the roadside using civil asset forfeiture laws. The Electronic Recovery and Access to Data (ERAD) handheld scanner was developed at the request of the Department of Homeland Security for use by US border guards. …
Iain Thomson, 08 Jun 2016

Surveillance forestalls more 'draconian' police powers – William Hague

Infosec 2016 Lord Hague has predicted that Western societies will enact laws and regulations against unbreakable encryption – while conceding that the technology has always existed. The former UK foreign secretary, who is also a historian and author of a biography of Prime Minister William Pitt the Younger, told delegates at the Infosec …
John Leyden, 08 Jun 2016

FBI tries again to get warrantless access to your browser history

US legislators are making another attempt to give the FBI access to anyone's web browser history with a new amendment to the pending review of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) Amendments Act of 2015. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) introduced the amendment [PDF], which would allow the FBI to use National Security …
Iain Thomson, 07 Jun 2016
Image by Lana839 http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-2897530p1.html

Anti-phishing most critical defence against rife CEO email fraud

AusCERT Internal anti-phishing programs are essential to prevent chief executive officers wiring money to fraudsters, threat man Donald McCarthy says. The programs are an underrated yet proven method for clamping down on what is perhaps the world's most successful and widely-used avenue to attack businesses and individuals. Business …
Darren Pauli, 02 Jun 2016
Extortion

Miscreants demand Bitcoins to stay silent on 'dirty secrets' of Tumblr, LinkedIn hack victims

The FBI has issued an unusual warning about a new breed of scammers looking to get rich off the back of recent high-profile data breaches. According to the agency's Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), a large volume of emails are being reported where the sender claims to have used data from recent breaches at LinkedIn, …
Iain Thomson, 01 Jun 2016

Yahoo!'s secret! FBI! orders!

Yahoo! today published three redacted National Security Letters (NSLs) it received from the FBI, which demanded information about the web portal's users. As is standard, the NSLs [PDF] contained a gagging clause that prevented Yahoo! from warning its customers of the data slurp. The letters were received in April 2013, August …
Chris Williams, 01 Jun 2016
Youth gripping his front teeth with a pair of pliers

Feds raid dental flaws dad

A dad-of-three says the FBI raided his family home at dawn this week – after he found and reported a password-less FTP server containing people's dental records. In February, Justin Shafer, a 36-year-old dental computer technician and security researcher, discovered and reported a hardcoded password in the Eaglesoft record …
Shaun Nichols, 28 May 2016

Feinstein-Burr's bonkers backdoor crypto law is dead in the water

A proposed piece of US legislation that would have required American tech companies to cripple the encryption in their products is dead in the water. The daft bill was championed by Senators Richard Burr (R‑NC) and Dianne Feinstein (D‑CA) in February following an increasingly rancorous debate over encryption, and at one point …
Kieren McCarthy, 27 May 2016
Ben Mezrich, Once Upon a Time in Russia: The Rise of the Oligarchs and the Greatest Wealth in History

FOURTH bank hit by SWIFT hackers

A fourth bank, this time in the Philippines, has been attacked by hackers targeting the SWIFT inter-bank transfer system. Security researchers at Symantec reckon the same group blamed for the infamous $81m Bangladesh central bank mega-heist back in February also mounted an earlier assault in the Philippines last year, itself …
John Leyden, 27 May 2016

Judge torpedoes 'Tor pedo' torpedo evidence

A US District Court judge has tossed out evidence gathered by the FBI from Tor users, because the Feds wouldn't reveal how exactly it exploit their browsers to unmask them. Jay Michaud, a Vancouver school administration worker, was charged with viewing a hidden service called Playpen, which hosted child abuse material, on the …
Jon Callas

Apple hires crypto-wizard Jon Callas to beef up security

Apple has added a security star to its firmament with the hire of Jon Callas to its security team. Callas, who you may remember from cofounding such firms as PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) and Silent Circle, has already been an Apple employee twice before. He worked at Apple in the 1990s and rejoined for a couple of years from 2009 …
Iain Thomson, 24 May 2016
Janus

ENISA / Europol almost argue against crypto backdoors

While the FBI, in the person of James Comey, continues its campaign to persuade the tech sector that mathematics isn't that big a thing and therefore backdoors are feasible, The European Union Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA) and Europol have tip-toed around the issue, issuing a joint statement that both …
Hillary Clinton

Guccifer fesses up to Clinton hacks

The US Virginia Eastern District Court has posted a notice for a change of plea hearing set for Wednesday in the case of Marcel Lehel Lazar. Two additional documents were also filed with the court under seal. It is not yet known which of the nine counts Lazar, aka "Guccifer," will be pleading to, or what the terms of the deal …
Shaun Nichols, 23 May 2016

Congress presents plan to tighten reins on FBI hacking

A bipartisan bill introduced to Congress this week will aim to set new limits on the ability of the FBI to access private computers. Dubbed the Stopping Mass Hacking (SMH) Act, the Senate bill [PDF] aims to roll back changes the Supreme Court recently issued in its stance on Rule 41 computer search warrants. Those changes …
Shaun Nichols, 19 May 2016

Destroying ransomware business models is not your job, so just pay up

COMMENT It's not your job to defend the world against criminals, so the decision to pay a ransomware demand is all about business. The likes of FBI Cyber Division deputy chief James C. Trainor disagree. The Bureau recently advised organisations not to pay lest they "embolden" criminals and encourage others to take start using …
Darren Pauli, 17 May 2016
GCHQ is following you on Twitter, Faceboo, email...

GCHQ's Twitter move: Wants to be 'accessible', people to 'understand'

GCHQ has belatedly joined Twitter. The UK government spy agency’s first message to the global micro-blogging platform on Monday morning was the brief “Hello, world”, something that GCHQ probably hopes will resonate with computer programmers worldwide.1 Simple and in keeping with the banal first entries of many Twitter users …
John Leyden, 16 May 2016
Congress

Paul backs FBI hack law

The fight to limit FBI hacking powers may have picked up a valuable ally. US Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) revealed this week that in the coming days he plans to co-sponsor legislation that would limit the ability of agents to get wide-reaching search warrants from US judge. The law would be a counter measure to recent proposed rule …
Shaun Nichols, 13 May 2016
Photo by Michael Vadon

Guilty! Trump delivers orange justice to Amazon

Donald Trump has launched a stinging attack on Amazon after the Bezos-owned Washington Post launched an investigation into his background. In an interview on Fox News, the Republican's party's pick for president claimed a group of over 20 journalists at the Post were investigating his entire life. Far from an act of the power …
Iain Thomson, 13 May 2016
Man shouting through a mega phone with abstract communication icons in the background

Mozilla wants Tor hole

Mozilla has filed an amicus brief [PDF] in a criminal case arguing that the US government should provide it with details of any security holes it knows about before it shares those details with others. The case concerns a public schools administration worker, Jay Michaud, who was charged with accessing a site that hosted child …
Kieren McCarthy, 12 May 2016

FBI director claims that videoing police is causing crime uptick

The director of the FBI, James Comey, has again claimed that citizens' use of mobile phones to record the police is causing an increase in crime, despite previous direct criticism over the claim from President Obama. According to Comey, the recent spate of videos recorded by ordinary citizens that have shown the police acting …
Kieren McCarthy, 12 May 2016

Congress calls for change to NSA spying law

The legal justification for the NSA to tap the internet's backbone was put on the table Tuesday in a hearing of the Senate's Judiciary Committee, with some senators vowing to add privacy protections to the law as expert witnesses noted the FBI was likely reading the love letters of US citizens rather than tracking down …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 May 2016
Lauri Love. Pic: Courage Foundation

Lauri Love: 'Britain's FBI' loses court attempt to evade decryption laws

The National Crime Agency's (NCA) application to force alleged hacktivist Lauri Love to decrypt computer equipment seized from him two years ago has been declined by a Westminster judge. At a hearing this morning in Court Seven at Westminster Magistrates' Court, the NCA's application to make Love disclose his passwords was …

Jailed hacker 'Guccifer' claims Hillary server gave him spillery

Romanian hacker Marcel Lehel Lazar – aka “Guccifer” – has had a chat to Fox News from a Virginia jail to claim he waltzed through an e-mail server run for Hillary Clinton. He's told Fox his breach of Clinton aide Sidney Blumenthal's AOL account gave him enough information to identify the Clinton server, which he then scanned …

Cops deploy StingRay anti-terror tech against $50 chicken-wing thief

Police in Maryland, US, used controversial cellphone-tracking technology intended only for the most serious crimes to track down a man who stole $50 of chicken wings. Police in Annapolis – an hour's drive from the heart of government in Washington DC – used a StingRay cell tower simulator in an effort to find the location of a …
Kieren McCarthy, 04 May 2016

Gozi trojan mastermind sentenced by US court to time served

The self-confessed creator of the infamous Gozi trojan was sentenced to time served and ordered to pay $6.9m in restitution by a New York court on Monday. Nikita Kuzmin, a 28-year-old Russian citizen, pleaded guilty to computer hacking and fraud charges in May 2011. He was released after 37 months served on remand, as part of …
John Leyden, 04 May 2016

Michigan electricity utility downed by ransomware attack

A water and electricity authority in the US State of Michigan has needed a week to recover from a ransomware attack that fortunately only hit its enterprise systems. Lansing's BWL – Board of Water & Light – first noticed the successful phishing attack on its corporate systems on April 25, and has had to keep systems including …

All US spy requests OK'd

Every single request by US g-men to carry out electronic surveillance in 2015 was approved by America's secret intelligence court. The US Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which is supposed to oversee and scrutinize spying operations, received 1,457 requests from the NSA and FBI to tap people's communications – and …
Team Register, 02 May 2016
Internet anonymity

US govt quietly tweaks rules to let cops, Feds hack computers anywhere, anytime

On Thursday, the US Supreme Court approved a change to Rule 41 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. It sounds innocuous, but the effects will be felt around the world. Under today's rules, US cops and FBI agents need to know where a computer is before they can get a warrant to directly hack the machine – because they …
Iain Thomson, 29 Apr 2016
A Handful of Giant Weta by Mike Locke

US government tells Apple it has security problems that Apple fixed last year

Two years after the White House decided disclosure was better than bug-hoarding, the FBI has handed over its first notification to Apple. News of the bug report was given to Reuters, which says notifications describing the iPhone and Mac problems landed in Cupertino on April 14. The White House policy was articulated at the …

Docker hired private detectives to pursue woman engineer's rape, death threat trolls

Container software biz Docker hired private investigators to track down trolls after one of its popular engineers was harassed and bullied for being a woman. Jessie Frazelle, who was sent death and rape threats, last month quit the San Francisco-based upstart to work at Mesosphere. As word of her departure spread, Docker …
Iain Thomson, 26 Apr 2016

FBI ends second iPhone fight after someone, um, 'remembers' the PIN

For the second time, the FBI has dropped a legal attempt to force Apple to unlock an iPhone at the last minute. Earlier this month, the FBI backed away from the high-profile San Bernardino case the day before it was due in court by claiming it had paid a third party (apparently $1.2m) to unlock the phone. This time it's a …
Kieren McCarthy, 25 Apr 2016
A dog wearing glasses, on a park bench reading the news paper

FBI spies on how many?

The US House Judiciary Committee has sent a letter to the director of national intelligence James Clapper asking him exactly how many US citizens the security services are spying on. "We write to ask that you provide us with a public estimate of the number of communications or transactions involving United States persons …
Kieren McCarthy, 22 Apr 2016
St Petersburg Russia

SpyEye duo behind bank-account-emptying malware banged up

A two-man team responsible for spreading the SpyEye malware that caused more than a billion dollars in financial hardship is now starting extended sentences in American prisons. The malware's author – Aleksandr Panin, 27, of Tver, Russia – was sent down for nine years and six months by United States District Court Judge Amy …
Iain Thomson, 21 Apr 2016

FBI boss: We paid at least $1.2m to crack the San Bernardino iPhone

Vid FBI director James Comey today suggested the Feds paid security experts over a million dollars to crack a San Bernardino killer's iPhone. While speaking at the Aspen Security Forum in the UK, Comey was asked how much his agents paid hackers to break into Syed Farook's iPhone 5C. "More than I will make in the remainder of this …
Chris Williams, 21 Apr 2016