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Digital Forensics & Incident Response

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InfoSec News Nuggets – 06/25/2019

1 Beware of Fake John McAfee and Tesla Cryptocurrency Giveaways

A resurgence of scam campaigns that pretend to be Bitcoin and Ethereum giveaways from Tesla, Elon Musk, and John McAfee are underway. These scams rise in popularity as cryptocurrency prices increase. BleepingComputer was told by security researcher Frost that there has been a resurgence of cryptocurrency giveaway scams being promoted on Twitter. These scams state that if a person sends between .05 to 5 Bitcoins or .5 to 50 Ethereum to the listed address, the giveaway will send them up to ten times back. The scam pages will show a pool of cryptocurrency with an indicator of how much cryptocurrency is left to giveaway and a live streaming list of transactions allegedly being sent to and from the cryptocurrency address.

 

2 Ex-Senate Aide Sentenced to 4 Years in Prison for Data Leak

A former congressional staffer was sentenced to four years in prison Wednesday after pleading guilty to illegally posting online the home addresses and telephone numbers of five Republican senators who backed Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination. Jackson A. Cosko, a former computer systems administrator in the office of Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., pleaded guilty to five federal offenses, including making public restricted personal information, computer fraud, witness tampering and obstruction of justice. His sentencing came as a second former Hassan aide was charged with assisting Cosko in revealing the private information, a practice known as “doxing.”

 

3 WeTransfer Security Incident: File Transfer Emails Sent to Wrong People

The popular file transfer service WeTransfer issued a security notice on Friday after discovering that some file transfer emails were sent to the wrong individuals. According to WeTransfer, file transfer emails were sent to unintended email addresses on June 16 and 17. After the incident was discovered, some users have been logged out of their account and instructed to reset their password. In addition, the company said it blocked the impacted transfer links. “We have learned that a transfer you sent or received was also delivered to some people it was not meant to go to. Our records show that those files have been accessed, but almost certainly by the intended recipient. Nevertheless, as a precaution we blocked the link to prevent further downloads,” WeTransfer said in an email sent to impacted users. WeTransfer warned affected individuals to keep an eye out for any “suspicious or unusual emails.”

 

4 Researchers develop a technique to vaccinate algorithms against adversarial attacks

“Adversarial attacks have proven capable of tricking a machine learning model into incorrectly labelling a traffic stop sign as speed sign, which could have disastrous effects in the real world. “Our new techniques prevent adversarial attacks using a process similar to vaccination,” Dr Nock said. “We implement a weak version of an adversary, such as small modifications or distortion to a collection of images, to create a more ‘difficult’ training data set. When the algorithm is trained on data exposed to a small dose of distortion, the resulting model is more robust and immune to adversarial attacks,”

 

5 Alphabet commits to data privacy in Toronto smart city master plan

A high-tech smart city project proposed along Toronto’s waterfront by Alphabet Inc unit Sidewalk Labs has pledged not to sell advertisers the personal data collected to serve residents and visitors, as part of a 1,500-page master plan released on Monday.  The proposal in Canada’s biggest city is designed to provide affordable housing, alleviate traffic and fight climate change and inequality. But privacy advocates have expressed concerns. The C$3.9 billion development proposes features such as a thermal grid to lower power use, traffic signals that use data to prioritize pedestrians who need more time to cross roads and a self-financing light rail transit that connects the Greater Toronto Area to the waterfront, among other features. Privacy activists have insisted that Sidewalk Labs must guarantee that personal data used to run the project remains anonymous.

 

6 User data stolen from ‘human hacking’ forum Social Engineered, published on rival site

A forum dedicated to the art of social engineering, Social Engineered, has been compromised and its users' data leaked on a rival website. The data breach occurred on June 13, 2019. The details of the forum users, including 89,000 unique email addresses linked to 55,000 forum account holders, usernames, IP addresses, and passwords stored as salted MD5 hashes were published and leaked online. In addition, private messages sent by users were also included in the data dump, according to Have I Been Pwned. The information has been added to the data leak search engine. In a blog post penned on Thursday by the owner of Social Engineered, nicknamed Snow101, a vulnerability in MyBB is to blame for the leak.

 

7 Keep Good Company

It has never been more important to diligently vet, onboard, monitor, and audit critical third-party service providers and vendors. These third parties exist to make life easier, more efficient, and more innovative and to help you better serve your customers. To do so, they often have access to, ingest, and store tremendous amounts of data for various processing purposes. Given this reality, it is hardly surprising that vendor-attributed data breaches are increasingly common. 

 

8 Used Nest cams were letting previous owners spy on you

A former Nest cam owner recently found that he could still see images from his old security camera, even after performing the factory reset you’re supposed to do before you offload your gizmos. The real problem: he wasn’t seeing a feed of his own property. Instead, he was seeing the new owner’s place, via his Wink account. Wink is a brand of software and hardware that connects with, and controls, smart-home devices. According to a report from Wirecutter, the original owner – a member of the Facebook Wink Users Group – said that he’d connected the Nest Cam to his Wink smarthome hub. Somehow, resetting it didn’t cut the cord: the feed, via a series of stills, from his former camera to his Wink account didn’t go away. After the Wirecutter report was published on Wednesday, Google – owner of Nest – sent a statement to the publication to let them know that it had fixed the issue and that users’ devices will be automatically updated.

 

9 FERC expands cybersecurity reporting standards to include non-disruptive incidents

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approved on Thursday an order to expand reporting requirements for attempts to compromise the national grid, a move it expects will improve the security of the bulk electric system. The order mandates reporting of cyber events and creates guidelines for the content, along with filing deadlines and how the reports are to be disseminated. The changes will "enhance the reliability of the Bulk-Power System by providing a more accurate picture of the rapidly changing cyber threat landscape," FERC staff said at a presentation yesterday during its open meeting.

 

10 Delta to install facial recognition at three airports

Delta Air Lines, in partnership with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), will install facial recognition at three airports over the next month.  The technology will be installed at boarding gates and will be used for international flights. It can save approximately nine minutes of boarding time for wide-body aircraft. “With facial recognition technology, we are simply taking a picture and matching it against passport photos, replacing the manual comparison process,” John Wagner, CBP deputy executive assistant commissioner, office of field operations, said. “Built on years of testing and partnership with Delta, expansion will bring a more efficient travel experience to more passengers, while meeting the federal requirements for international passenger verification that have been in place since 1996.”

 

11 How ‘private 5G’ could enable Google and Amazon to become telcos

One of the key selling points of 5G wireless technology to the world's telecommunications providers has been the opportunity to enter new markets and create new sources of revenue from wireless services. The opportunity to build an Amazon, or something like AWS, leveraging much of the assets that telcos already own, has been most compelling of all. But in a twist that 5G's engineers perhaps should have seen coming, enterprises and industry groups have begun exploring this issue in reverse: If telcos can build the next cloud using x86 servers and micro data centers at the edge, then why couldn't they? All they would need is access to wireless spectrum. And in many countries, including the US, there may be just enough of that unlicensed spectrum hanging around — including leftover frequencies from the VHF/UHF TV transition — to pull off an upset.


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