Articles about Security

Unless you upgrade to Android Pie, a vulnerability leaves your phone trackable -- and Google won't fix it

Android figure on smartphone

A vulnerability in the Android operating system means that it is worryingly easy to track and locate phones. While the issue has been addressed in Android Pie, Google has no plans to patch the vulnerability in earlier versions of its mobile OS.

The vulnerability (CVE-2018-9489) was revealed in a report from Nightwatch Cybersecurity which warns that it can be used to "uniquely identify and track any Android device" and also to "geolocate users". As well as Google's own Android builds, the problem is also said to affect forked versions such as FireOS.

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Experts voice concern after discovering Google's Titan Security Key is made in China

Google Titan Security Key

While the US and UK governments continue to eye China with suspicion, blocking the use of some Chinese hardware because of national security concerns, it has come to light that Google's Titan Security Key is produced in China.

The keys are supposed to boost security through the use of two-step verification, but security experts are calling for transparency about the supply chain for the hardware after it was revealed it is produced by Chinese company Feitian. There are concerns that the devices could be compromised by Chinese hackers (state or otherwise) to spy on users.

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Botnet distribution of remote access Trojans doubles

Trojan horse

Since the beginning of 2017, the number of remote access Trojan (RAT) files found among the malware distributed by botnets has almost doubled, according to a new report.

The botnet activity report from Kaspersky Lab analyzed more than 150 malware families and their modifications circulating through 60,000 botnets around the world.

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0patch beats Microsoft to patching Windows 10 task scheduler 0-day vulnerability

0patch

Just 24 hours after a zero-day bug in Windows task scheduler was revealed by @SandboxEscaper on Twitter, the vulnerability has been patched. While Microsoft said it would "proactively update impacted advices as soon as possible" the patch has not come from the Windows-maker.

Instead, it was left to micro-patching specialists 0patch to produce a fix for the Task Scheduler ALPC Local Privilege Execution (VU#906424) security flaw -- one that is a mere 13 bytes in size.

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80 percent of enterprises struggle to protect machine identities

network

The protection of human identities tends to be high on the agenda for organizations, but what about machine identities?

Recent increases in the number of machines on enterprise networks, shifts in technology, IoT devices and new computing capabilities have created a set of challenges that require increased focus on protecting machine identities.

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Google's Titan Security Key now available for $50

Google Titan Security Key

A month after it was announced, Google is now selling its Titan Security Key for $50. Currently available in the US, the FIDO-compatible keys help to boost security with two-step verification (2SV).

Google boasts that the keys have "special sauce" in the form of tamper-resistant firmware that helps to further improve security. Costing roughly the same as a Yubikey, Google is hoping to offer a viable alternative to the current FIDO key leader.

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The top cybersecurity concerns for IT and business

business fear

Everyone is aware that cybersecurity threats are out there, but what are the biggest threats and are IT and business executives worried about the same things?

New research from data security specialist Varonis highlights some major differences -- and potential challenges -- when it comes to communicating and aligning on key threats.

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Email security systems miss thousands of malicious links

Malicious email

A new study from email security company Mimecast shows that malicious links in emails are being missed by many security systems.

Mimecast examined more than 142 million emails that had passed through organizations' email security vendors. The latest results reveal 203,000 malicious links within 10,072,682 emails were deemed safe by other security systems -- a ratio of one unstopped malicious link for every 50 emails inspected.

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Fileless malware attacks rise 94 percent in 2018

Malware magnifier

The first half of 2018 has seen a 94 percent rise in fileless malware attacks according to the latest Enterprise Risk Index Report from endpoint security company SentinelOne.

It also finds that PowerShell attacks jumped to a record of 5.2 attacks per 1000 endpoints, compared to 2.5 in May. Ransomware attacks remain popular too, ranging from 5.6 to 14.4 attacks per 1000 endpoints.

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Microsoft Windows task scheduler 0-day outed on Twitter

Angled Microsoft logo

A privilege escalation bug has been discovered in Windows' task scheduler and revealed on Twitter. A proof-of-concept has been published, and the vulnerability has been confirmed to be present in a "fully-patched 64-bit Windows 10 system".

The security flaw was exposed on Twitter by user SandboxEscaper -- who has since deleted his or her account. An advisory about the vulnerability has been posted on CERT/CC, and Microsoft says that it is working to fix the problem.

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Epic calls Google 'irresponsible' for exposing Fortnite security flaw

Fortnite for Android

The CEO of Epic Games has slammed Google's "irresponsible" disclosure of a security bug in its hit game Fortnite. Tim Sweeney accused Google of trying to "score cheap PR points" by revealing a vulnerability in the game's installer.

Epic chose to bypass Google Play when it released Fortnite for Android leading to concerns about security. On Friday, Google revealed details of a security flaw that could be exploited to secretly install malware onto people's phones.

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Fortnite installer had a serious security flaw that Google just revealed

Fortnite logo

It seems that the concerns about Fortnite's security were well-founded -- although not necessarily for the reasons some people might have expected. Epic Games has been criticized for its decision not to make Fortnite available through Google Play, leading Google to show warnings to anyone conducting searches for the game.

Now a Google engineer just revealed that the first version of Epic's installer had a serious security vulnerability, placing Android users at risk. A post on Google's Issue Tracker shows that the installer could be abused to secretly download and install any app with any level of permissions -- a Man-in-the-Disk exploit.

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T-Mobile hacked -- over 2 million accounts exposed

T-Mobile logo on smartphone

T-Mobile has revealed that it fell victim to a security incident earlier in the week, and details of around 2.3 million accounts were accessed.

The hack attack took place on Monday, August 20, and while T-Mobile stresses that no financial data was taken, it concedes that it detected "unauthorized capture of some information". The exposed data includes names, billing zip code, phone number, email address, account number and account type, which would be enough for hackers to launch successful phishing attacks.

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Does your website risk leaking personal data?

data leak tap

Recent scandals surrounding the use of personal data, such as the Cambridge Analytica scandal, plus the large fines that can be levied under GDPR, have focused minds on the protection of information.

But is your website at risk of exposing your visitors' data? Auditing and monitoring specialist DataTrue has produced an infographic looking at the risks site tags may pose to privacy.

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Boogiedown! Fortnite is bribing players into enabling 2FA -- and that's a good thing

Fortnite Boogiedown emote

Security is a serious business (including for Fortnite-maker Epic Games), but it's not something most people take seriously enough -- as the number of weak and reused passwords out there shows. Epic, however, has just given players of its hit game an incentive to enable two-factor authentication on their account.

By enabling 2FA in Fortnite, players can unlock a hidden extra -- the Boogiedown emote. While this is undoubtedly a form of bribery, it is no bad thing. There are just a few simple steps you need to follow to access the new emote.

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