Articles about Miscreants

So which miscreants wrote the CosmicDuke info-slurping nasty?

Security researchers have uncovered a link between a Trojan and a recently discovered cyber-espionage tool which suggests cyber-spies behind recent attacks on Western governments cut their teeth writing conventional Trojans. CosmicDuke combines elements from the Cosmu Trojan and a backdoor known as MiniDuke, previously …
John Leyden, 04 Jul 2014

Miscreants leak banking baddie's secret source

Miscreants have released the source code for the Tinba banking Trojan in a move that may spawn the development of copycats. The secret source behind early versions of the small (some versions weigh in at just 20KB) but pernicious banking Trojan was released through an underground forum last week, reports Danish security …
John Leyden, 11 Jul 2014

Phishing miscreants THWART securo-sleuths with AES-256 crypto

Phishing fraudsters have begun using industry-standard AES-256 encryption to disguise the content of fraudulent sites. Obfuscated phishing sites are nothing new. Various techniques such as JavaScript encryption tools are commonly used but Symantec recently caught what it reckons is the first use of AES-256 encryption in dodgy …
John Leyden, 09 Sep 2014
PCS with a red X in front of them

Swiping your card at local greengrocers? Miscreants will swipe YOU in a minute

More than a thousand point-of-sale, grocery management and accounting systems worldwide have been compromised by a new strain of malware, results of a March 2014 probe have revealed. During a survey of compromised POS terminals, accounting systems and grocery management platforms, the Nemanja botnet was fingered as one of the …
John Leyden, 27 May 2014
Fail whale

TweetDeck XSS flap: Miscreants flash their naughty bits at users

Updated Twitter aficionados are being warned to log out of Twitter client TweetDeck and revoke its access to their accounts after an apparent cross-site scripting vulnerability was discovered. Multiple users – including El Reg's HQ in London, England – reported on Wednesday that they had seen a suspicious pop-up within Tweetdeck that …
Jack Clark, 11 Jun 2014

Insert 'Skeleton Key', unlock Microsoft Active Directory. Simples – hackers

Miscreants have forged a strain of malware which is capable of bypassing authentication on Microsoft Active Directory (AD) systems. Hackers can use arbitrary passwords to authenticate as any corporate user, Dell SecureWorks warns. The malware, dubbed Skeleton Key, is deployed as an in-memory patch on a victim’s AD domain …
John Leyden, 13 Jan 2015

MAC BOTNET uses REDDIT comments for directions

A zombie network that feasts on the computer brains of infected Macs has press-ganged 17,000 compromised machines into its ranks, Russian anti-virus firm Dr Web warns. The iWorm creates a backdoor on machines running OS X. Miscreants are using messages posted on Reddit as a navigational aid which points infected machines towards …
John Leyden, 03 Oct 2014
gandalf

Google bakes W3C malware-buster into Gmail

If an online service offers even the slightest gap through which miscreants can launch an attack, they will do so. It's therefore not surprising that Google feels some extensions to its Gmail service may not be entirely friendly to users. The Chocolate Factory's, response, announced Tuesday, is to adopt the W3C's Content …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Dec 2014

Calling all cybercrooks: Ready-made phone attack rig for sale

Cybercrooks are marketing a hardware-based tool for running denial of service attacks on telephone systems. The Telephone Denial of Service attacks (TDoS) rig is being sold by a group of cybercriminals called “TNT” from Eastern Europe via underground cybercrime forums. The tool, called “TNT Instant Up”, features a special …
John Leyden, 23 Feb 2015

ISC.org website hacked: Scan your PC for malware if you stopped by

The website for the Internet Systems Consortium, which develops the BIND DNS and ISC DHCP tools, has been hacked. Anyone who recently browsed ISC.org is urged to check their PC for malware as miscreants booby-trapped the site to infect visitors. The website has been replaced by a placeholder page warning netizens of the attack …
Chris Williams, 26 Dec 2014
The Queen Mother by Phil Houghton

Sony-blasting Lizard Squad suspects quizzed by UK and Finnish cops

UK police have arrested a suspected member of the infamous Lizard Squad crew. The 22-year-old from Twickenham, south-west London, was arrested by police on Tuesday, and questioned about alleged fraud against PayPal as well as claims he is reportedly linked to Lizard Squad – a group of cyber-miscreants who made headlines …
John Leyden, 02 Jan 2015
Sony PS4

Sony grovels, offers freebies after PlayStation network spent Xmas TITSUP

Sony has offered free membership and discounts to its console gamers after the PlayStation Network fell off the interwebs for several days over Christmas. The troubled entertainment giant said it would offer those whose free trial of PlayStation Plus was interrupted by the outages five more free days, while all PlayStation …
Shaun Nichols, 03 Jan 2015
Free Realms

PlayStation Network blasted offline AGAIN. Just not Sony's decade

Sony's PlayStation Network has suffered yet another outage: the PlayStation store went titsup in the early hours of Monday, UK time. Hacktivist group the Lizard Squad claimed responsibility for flooding the servers off the internet using a distributed denial-of-service attack. The PlayStation giant said on its Twitter account …
Kelly Fiveash, 08 Dec 2014

Another day, yet another emergency Adobe Flash patch. Because that's how we live now

The new year hasn't been a pleasant one for Adobe: the Silicon Valley firm has scrambled to close yet more serious security holes in its Flash player. Last week the Photoshop biz rushed out a patch for a critical flaw in Flash that miscreants were exploiting in the wild to hijack victims' computers. Today, a new update has been …
Iain Thomson, 27 Jan 2015

Bash bug flung against NAS boxes

Hackers are attempting to exploit the BASH remote code injection vulnerability against Network Attached Storage (NAS) systems. Miscreants are actively exploiting the time-to-patch window in targeting embedded devices, security firm FireEye warns. We have evidence that attackers are actively exploiting the time-to-patch window …
John Leyden, 01 Oct 2014

VXers Shellshocking embedded BusyBox boxen

Malware writers have crafted new wares to attack embedded devices running BusyBox and not yet patched against the ShellShock vulnerability, researcher Rhena Inocencio says. Miscreants' tool of choice for such attacks is malware called "Bashlite" that, once executed on a victim machine, probes for devices such as routers and …
Darren Pauli, 17 Nov 2014
Steeden NRL ball

National Rugby League boots 'metadata' right into Australia's face

Australian politicians and activists frustrated at their fellows' apparent indifference to the metadata data retention debate have cause to thank the National Rugby League (NRL). In its laudable battle against bad behaviour by the inadvertent role models who sign up to play in its competition. the NRL has announced new rules for …

FTC to Apple: Turn your head and cough while we feel for balls-up with HealthKit privacy

US watchdog the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is reportedly scrutinizing Apple's health-monitoring software and hardware, dubbed HealthKit, for privacy problems. The regulator has asked the iThing giant to come in and explain just how it planned to handle fans' private information, according to a Reuters report citing unnamed …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Nov 2014

Cortana, remind me to patch Windows, IE, and Adobe gear next Tues

Microsoft will release eight security updates next Tuesday to squash remote-code execution bugs in Windows and Internet Explorer among other flaws. Meanwhile, Adobe will issue new versions of Acrobat and Reader for this month's Patch Tuesday. Two of the security updates from Microsoft are rated as critical because they allow …
Shaun Nichols, 09 May 2014
Chat from the #opaustralia IRC channel

Freenode IRC users told to change passwords after securo-breach

A security breach at popular, free and open source software-focused IRC network Freenode means users need to change their passwords. Freenode's IRC server was compromised and passwords were likely sniffed by unidentified hackers, prompting a warning to users that they should reset their passwords as a precaution. The security …
John Leyden, 15 Sep 2014

Burglars' delight no more: Immobilise UK secures property list

Security flaws that left millions of records on the Immobilise UK National Property Register website wide open to snooping have been identified and removed. Security consultant Paul Moore uncovered flaws that meant it was possible to access other members' records. The Immobilise site allows consumers to add details of valuables …
John Leyden, 07 Jan 2015

Still using Adobe Flash? Oh well, get updating: 15 hijack flaws patched

People still using Adobe Flash should update the plugin after the Photoshop giant patched 15 remote-code execution holes in its screen-door software. If hackers aren't already exploiting all these holes in the wild, they soon will be. The remote-code exec bugs allow miscreants to hijack vulnerable Windows, OS X and Linux …
Shaun Nichols, 05 Feb 2015
Purported iPhone on the cover of a 2006 issue of the French publication, 20 Minutes

IT cock-up – not jihadi DDoS – fingered for French web media blackout

Several prominent ‪French news websites‬ fell off the web on Friday for several hours in what's looking like a technical failure rather than a denial-of-service attack. It was, at first, assumed Islamist miscreants had attacked the sites, lashing out in anger at press coverage of the C‪harlie Hebdo‬ killings. Le Parisien ( …
John Leyden, 17 Jan 2015

Ransomware 2.0 'crypts website databases – until victims pay up

Criminals are holding companies' web databases to ransom by compromising web applications and encrypting all the data until money is handed over. As detailed by security consultancy High-Tech Bridge, the attacks start with an assault on a website that yields access to a database server. Once in, miscreants install hidden …
Darren Pauli, 03 Feb 2015
Hacker image

Sony employees face 'weeks of pen and paper' after crippling network hack

Sony Pictures still hasn't recovered from a comprehensive attack on its computer networks – and staff have been reduced to doing their work by hand – according to insiders. This notice stuck on lifts at Sony Pictures in London.. pic.twitter.com/RMZcQhjfYI — James Dean (@JamesDeanTimes) November 28, 2014 The infiltration by …
Iain Thomson, 28 Nov 2014
The Register breaking news

MiniDuke miscreants whip out old-school tricks to spy on world+dog

A new strain of malware designed to spy on multiple government entities and institutions across the world has been discovered by anti-virus firm Kaspersky Lab. MiniDuke has infected government entities in the Ukraine, Belgium, Portugal, Romania, the Czech Republic and Ireland. In addition, a research institute, two think-tanks, …
John Leyden, 27 Feb 2013
Laurel and Hardy on the phone

Hellooo, NSA? The US State Department can't kick hackers out of its networks – report

An attack against US State Department servers is still ongoing three months after the agency spotted miscreants inside its email system, it's reported. In November the State Department was forced to suspend its unclassified email systems after it was successfully infiltrated by hackers unknown. At the time the agency said its …
Iain Thomson, 20 Feb 2015
Amy Pascal

Exit Interview: Sony Pics co-chair Amy Pascal flees 'Nork' hack studio

The co-chairman of hacker-ravaged Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) Amy Pascal has stepped down – and will form her own production company in association with the Hollywood studio. "I have spent almost my entire professional life at Sony Pictures and I am energized to be starting this new chapter based at the company I call home …
Iain Thomson, 05 Feb 2015
Admiral Mike Rogers of the NSA

Why does the NSA's boss care so much about backdoors when he can just steal all our encryption keys?

NSA director Admiral Mike Rogers has said it is vital Uncle Sam's crimefighters snoop on people – and that this should be possible even if citizens use strong encryption. The spymaster reckons Americans should secure their communications against all eavesdroppers – except, of course, those working for the police, FBI and the NSA …
Iain Thomson, 25 Feb 2015
iPod Touch 3G

Apple deliberately wiped rivals' music from iPods – iTunes court claim

Apples software forced people to delete music from their iPods if it was downloaded from an iTunes store rival, a court has heard. During a class-action antitrust hearing in California on Thursday, lawyers argued that Apple purposely made its iTunes application instruct users to reset their iPods – removing any tracks obtained …
Shaun Nichols, 04 Dec 2014
Data breach image

Deloitte's files on bean counters swept up in Sony hack stash – report

Bean-counting giant Deloitte has been pulled into Sony Pictures' ongoing nightmare – the one in which the movie giant was comprehensively hacked and gigabytes of sensitive files leaked online. Unreleased films, draft scripts, criminal record checks on staff, doctors' notes, passwords, encryption certificates, social security …
Shaun Nichols, 04 Dec 2014

Queen's Speech: Computer Misuse Act to be amended, tougher sentences planned

The final session of Parliament before next year's General Election was opened by the Queen today, who told MPs and peers that the Tory-led coalition government had 15 bills tabled. There was little of note on the tech front, with two exceptions – both detailed within the Serious Crime Bill. The first is that plans are afoot to …
Kelly Fiveash, 04 Jun 2014
cloud

ZeuS miscreants offer up honeypot

Cybercrooks are attempting to turn the tables on security researchers by setting up fake interfaces on their botnets in a bid to confuse and confound analysis. The fake honeypot tactic was brought into play by a group using a variant of the infamous Zeus crimeware toolkit. The unknown miscreants targeted quarterly federal …
John Leyden, 05 Nov 2010

Dirtbags dressed up malware as legit app using Sony crypto-certs

Miscreants were quick to capitalize on the theft of Sony's cryptographic certificates – used to sign a software nasty to make it look legit. An analysis of malware dubbed Destover was published by Kaspersky Lab on Tuesday, and shows the code was signed using a private certificate belonging to Sony to evade malware filters. …
Iain Thomson, 10 Dec 2014
The North Korean computer system

Feds finger Norks in Sony hack, Obama asks: HOW DO YOU SOLVE A PROBLEM LIKE KOREA?

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has claimed to have found evidence linking North Korea with the hackers who ransacked Sony Pictures' servers and dumped gigabytes of sensitive data online. "As a result of our investigation, and in close collaboration with other US government departments and agencies, the FBI now has enough …
Iain Thomson, 19 Dec 2014
medical_doctor_health_channel

'Chinese crims' snatch 4.5 MILLION patient files from US hospitals

One of the largest healthcare providers in the US claims Chinese hackers ran riot through its systems between April and June this year – accessing names, addresses and social security numbers of millions of patients. But Community Health Systems (CHS) insists no medical records nor any financial data were grabbed by the …
Iain Thomson, 18 Aug 2014
Hacked sarcasm

Backoff malware attacks hit 'more than 1,000 big businesses', warns US government

A Point-of-Sale malware attack that struck shipping outfit UPS has compromised the networks of a "significant" number of major businesses in the US, according to the country's Homeland Security office. The US administration's Computer Emergency Readiness Team (CERT) advised administrators and operators of PoS systems to …
Kelly Fiveash, 23 Aug 2014
Qualcomm Atheros hybrid network

Is your home or office internet gateway one of '1.2 MILLION' wide open to hijacking?

Hundreds of thousands of routers, firewalls and gateways used by small offices and homes are said to be vulnerable to hijacking due to bungled NAT settings. The networking devices are, we're told, commonly misconfigured to allow remote attackers to reprogram how network traffic flows to PCs, servers, tablets and other machines …
John Leyden, 22 Oct 2014
Call of Duty: Black Ops 2

BLAM, BLAM, BLAM... nooooo! Hacker crew Lizard Squad spits DDoS venom on Call of Duty

Hackers from the group Lizard Squad have reneged on their promise to quit earlier this month, apparently launching distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks on major gaming industry websites. After an attack on the Playstation Network in August, Lizard Squad has added two uber-popular shoot-'em-up games from Activision …
John Leyden, 23 Sep 2014

Internet lobs $$$s at dev of crucial GPG tool after he runs short of cash

Werner Koch is looking at a big payday after pulling in over $150,000 to fund the continuing development of his crucial open-source GNU Privacy Guard encryption tools. Koch, 53, is a leading light in the free software movement: in 1999, he released GPG, which uses the OpenPGP standard to safeguard the communications of millions …
Iain Thomson, 05 Feb 2015
James Franco and Seth Rogen in The Interview

Shock! Nork-grating flick The Interview WILL be in cinemas – Sony

After days of ridicule for caving into ludicrous anonymous threats against moviegoers, Sony Pictures and US cinemas will show The Interview this Christmas, after all. According to the likes of Associated Press, BBC News and Variety, the Seth Rogan comedy flick about the assassination of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un will be …
Shaun Nichols, 23 Dec 2014

'Lenovo, Superfish put smut on my system' – class-action lawsuit

A California woman has filed the first lawsuit against Lenovo and Superfish over the pair's adware debacle, claiming the "malware" injected smutty pictures into her web browser on her Yoga laptop. A class-action filing [PDF] in the state's southern district court recounts how Jessica Bennett bought a Lenovo Yoga 2 laptop in late …
Iain Thomson, 23 Feb 2015
Orange Credit Card

Home Depot: 56 million bank cards pwned by malware in our tills

Home Depot today admitted 56 million bank cards are at risk after they were used in malware-infected tills. The DIY giant on Thursday revealed that a software nasty infiltrated its PC-powered registers between April and September in the US and Canada. Cards swiped through the compromised machines could be accessed by the malware …
Shaun Nichols, 18 Sep 2014
Gloved hand reaches into victim's pocket to steal mobile phone

Sony Pictures hack is Hollywood's 'Snowden moment' say infosec bods

Hackers obtained system administrators' passwords to pull of the mega-hack against Sony Pictures' servers, according to reports. This will come as no surprise to IT professionals. Purloined administrator credentials gave miscreants calling themselves Guardians of Peace broad latitude to access systems and sensitive data; that …
John Leyden, 19 Dec 2014
LIZARD WEARING A TOP HAT SITS ON A BRANCH.  Brett Weinstein pic - ALTERED BY JUDE KARABUS - licensed under  CC 3.0

Facebook: Oi, Lizard Squad – we can take down our own site, ta

A technical cockup – rather than hostile hacker action – is apparently the reason Facebook, Instagram and other Web 2.0 sweethearts fell off the internet on Monday. Prankster hacking crew Lizard Squad was gloating over the downtime; Tinder also disappeared for a while during the outage of Facebook and its photo-sharing sister …
John Leyden, 27 Jan 2015

EU cyber-cop: Dark-net crooks think they're beyond reach (until now)

Hundreds of website domains seized, 17 arrested and $1m in Bitcoin confiscated – Thursday was, apparently, a busy day for the West's cyber-cops. Operation Onymous, in which police and g-men in more than a dozen European countries as well as the US, has claimed some big scalps including the Silk Road 2.0, Hydra and Cannabis Road …
Jennifer Baker, 07 Nov 2014

Scammers plead guilty to $AU500k Telstra scam

Three men have pleaded guilty to an Australian court over a scam that netted them more than $AU500,000 worth of mobile phones and fondleslabs from Telstra without payment. The Victorian County Court heard the three Indian men, on temporary visas, then sent the phones back to India for re-sale. The Herald Sun says the scam …
That 419 shirt artwork in full

Bank IT bod accused of stealing $40 MEEELLION from employer

If you get an email from a hapless Nigerian prince who needs a hand shifting a few million dollars, the message will no doubt wing its way into your spam folder. But should you get a plea for help from a Nigerian sysadmin, you may want to take a second look: the Nigerian government's Economic and Financial Crimes Commission ( …
Iain Thomson, 16 Sep 2014

URL LOL: Delta splats web flight boarding pass snoop bug

Delta Airlines techies have fixed a flaw in the biz's paperless boarding pass system that allowed a hacker to access information on strangers' flights. The security vulnerability is down to the URLs used by Delta's website to serve digital copies of boarding passes to smartphones. These passes appear as QR codes which are …
Iain Thomson, 18 Dec 2014

Forget Norks, Russian hackers are in Sony Pictures' servers – claim

There's a new twist in the already tangled tale of the Sony Pictures mega-hack: it's now claimed Russians possibly broke into the company's computers. Miscreants in the Putin-led nation comprehensively compromised the Hollywood studio's servers, and were responsible for most of the damage against its systems, reckons Jeffrey …
John Leyden, 04 Feb 2015