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InfoSec News Nuggets 4/12/2024

Zambia Busts 77 People in China-Backed Cybercrime Operation

Law enforcement in Zambia this week raided a Chinese company that hired unsuspecting young Zambian citizens purportedly for positions at a call center that instead was a front for cybercrime and money laundering. The so-called Golden Top Support services company directed the employees “with engaging in deceptive conversations with unsuspecting mobile users across various platforms such as WhatsApp, Telegram, chatrooms and others, using scripted dialogues,” Nason Banda, director general of Zambia’s Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) told the BBC, which reported on the case. The DEC, law enforcement, immigration, and anti-terrorism units assisted in the investigation and arrests at the shell company.


Windows Malware on GitHub Wants to Steal Your Crypto

Malicious actors are gaming GitHub’s search results to trick unsuspecting users into accidentally downloading Windows malware on their computers, according to a new report from cybersecurity software firm Checkmarx. Attackers are creating GitHub repositories with names that claim to be for frequently researched topics when in reality, they’re thinly disguised malware, Yahuda Gelb, a research engineer at Checkmarx, writes in a blog post. The malicious program spreading across the Microsoft-owned platform is similar to the “Keyzetsu clipper” malware, which can attack 12 different crypto wallet addresses connected to a computer, but only does so at a prespecified time on a daily basis.


5.25-inch floppy disks expected to help run San Francisco trains until 2030

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), which runs the city’s Muni Metro light rail, claims to be the first US agency to adopt the train control system it currently uses, which has software run off floppy disks. But today, the SFMTA is eager to abandon its reliance on 5¼-inch floppy disks—just give it about six more years and a few hundred more million dollars. Members of the SFMTA recently spoke with the ABC7 Bay Area News and detailed the agency’s use of three 5¼-inch floppy disks every morning. The floppies have been part of Muni Metro’s Automatic Train Control System (ATCS) since its installation in the Market Street subway stop in 1998. The ATCS has multiple components, “including computers onboard the trains that are tied into propulsion and brake systems, central and local servers, and communications infrastructure, like loop cable signal wires,” Michael Roccaforte, an SFMTA spokesperson, told Ars Technica.


Ransomware gang’s new extortion trick? Calling the front desk

When a hacker called the company that his gang claimed to breach, he felt the same way that most of us feel when calling the front desk: frustrated. The phone call between the hacker, who claims to represent the ransomware gang DragonForce, and the victim company employee was posted by the ransomware gang on its dark web site in an apparent attempt to put pressure on the company to pay a ransom demand. In reality, the call recording just shows a somewhat hilarious and failed attempt to extort and intimidate a company’s rank-and-file employees.


96% of US hospital websites share visitor info with Meta, Google, data brokers

Hospitals – despite being places where people implicitly expect to have their personal details kept private – frequently use tracking technologies on their websites to share user information with Google, Meta, data brokers, and other third parties, according to research published today. Academics at the University of Pennsylvania analyzed a nationally representative sample of 100 non-federal acute care hospitals – essentially traditional hospitals with emergency departments – and their findings were that 96 percent of their websites transmitted user data to third parties. Additionally, not all of these websites even had a privacy policy. And of the 71 percent that did, 56 percent disclosed specific third-party companies that could receive user information.



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