Just a week after announcing that it would no longer cover ransomware payments in France, global insurance company AXA was affected by a targeted ransomware attack. The ransomware group Avaddon credited itself with the attack and said it to Bleeping Computer who also launched a DDoS attack against insurance websites in Thailand, Malaysia, Hong Kong, and the Philippines as additional pressure to pay the ransom amount. In addition, the group claims to have stolen 3TB of data, which it plans to start filtering to the public if AXA does not pay within 10 days. Data includes customer medical records, claims, payments, bank account information, identification cards, passports, and more.
“This is a clear example of cybercriminal gangs ‘challenging’ their business model,” says Luis Corrons, an Avast security evangelist. “If companies don’t pay, there wouldn’t be ransomware attacks. It’s as easy as it seems. AXA supports this idea and criminals do not like to talk because they are going to attack.” AXA told Bleeping Computer that the only compromised information was provided by his desk in Thailand.
Herff Jones Data Disclosure Affects College Students
FOR US. The supplier of bags and purses Herff Jones suffered a data breach, discovered only when university students who bought training materials from the company were not questioned by their media partners about fraudulent collections in their letters of credit. The victims quickly realized that their common denominator was Herff Jones. Each claim had a different value, generally between US$80 and US$1,200, but a student claimed that a friend paid him US$4,000. On May 12, Herff Jones released a statement acknowledging the data breach, saying: “We sincerely apologize to those affected by this incident. We are working diligently. “This is a clear example of gangs of cybercriminals ‘defending’ their business model”, says Luis Corrons, evangelist for Avast security. “If companies don’t pay, there wouldn’t be ransomware attacks. It’s as easy as it seems. AXA supports this idea and the bandits will not like it, then they will attack.” AXA told the Bleeping Computer that the only compromised dice were on a Thai desktop.
How ransomware pandillas are going deeper underground
After President Biden hinted at a press conference that EE. UU. would take measures against ransomware gangs, and many of these gangs announce that they are solving or involving private individuals. Biden’s comments sparked a Colonial Pipeline ransomware incident that temporarily wiped out all oil operations in the US 45% last week. For my part, from Biden’s comments, three major forms of piracy would change his policies to no longer allow ransomware or ads. Darkside, the group responsible for the attack on the Colonial Pipeline, was the first to abandon its operations. Read more in El Registro.
The denunciations of cyber crimes in the USA. UU. more than 100% increase in 14 months
The FBI’s Internet Crime Reporting Center (IC3) reports that between March 2020 and May 2021, reports of cybercrime increased by 1 million. Previously, you had a delay of more than 29 months to verify the number of complaints, but a maximum quantity of these months was achieved in less than the target time since the pandemic began. The FBI attributes the increase in complaints to cyber-delinquents who take advantage of people who work from home, in addition to the increase in COVID-related stress. In its 2020 Internet Crime Report, the FBI lists the top 3 offenses of the year as phishing scams, non-payment/non-delivery scams, and extortion.
Android 12 promises more privacy controls
Google announced this week that one of the features of its new Android 12 mobile operating system, which will be released later this month, is a privacy panel. According to The Record, this new feature supposedly aggregates all permissions into a single section. Google comments that it will offer users “a simple timeline view and clear accesses in the last 24 hours to location, microphone and camera”. Some other new security features include indicators that a camera and/or microphone are in use. Apple’s iOS 14 does this, using a color point. Android will use camera and microphone icons. Also with iOS 14, Android allows you to compare an “approximate location” to the location of the precise direction.
This week’s “must talk” on the Avast blog
Have you noticed that QR codes are suddenly everywhere? Well, maybe the surprise says it’s been around since 1994. Why does it now only appear on everything from vases to menus? Read on to find out why it takes a pandemic for QR codes to be relevant.
Exclusive: U.S. spy agency probes sabotage of satellite internet during Russian invasion, sources say
11 March (Reuters) According to three persons with direct knowledge of the situation, Western intelligence agencies are looking into a cyberattack by unidentified hackers that crippled broadband satellite internet connection in Ukraine at the same time as Russia’s incursion.
Analysts for the French government cybersecurity agency ANSSI, the Ukrainian intelligence service, and the U.S. National Security Agency are evaluating whether the remote sabotage of a satellite internet provider’s service was carried out by Russian-state-backed hackers attempting to cut off communications to prepare the battlefield.
On February 24, between 5 and 9 a.m., the digital blitz on the satellite service commenced as Russian forces entered Ukraine and began shooting missiles, impacting major Ukrainian cities including the capital, Kyiv.
According to a representative of the American telecommunications company Viasat, which controls the impacted network, satellite modems belonging to tens of thousands of users in Europe were taken offline as a result of the incident.
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Some clients across Europe, including Ukraine, have internet connectivity from Viasat Inc.’s KA-SAT satellite, which was blocked by the hackers. Some are still offline more than two weeks later, resellers told Reuters.
Due to Viasat’s role as a defense contractor for the United States and its allies, what seems to be one of the most serious wartime cyberattacks officially documented thus far has caught the attention of Western intelligence.
According to government contracts examined by Reuters, KA-SAT has given Ukrainian military and police forces internet connectivity.
According to Pablo Breuer, a former SOCOM technician for the United States, cutting off satellite internet connectivity could make it more difficult for Ukraine to defend itself against Russian forces.
“The range of conventional land-based radios is limited. You must rely on these satellites if you’re deploying contemporary smart systems, smart weapons, and trying to perform combined arms movements “Breuer remarked.
When contacted for comment, the Russian Embassy in Washington did not respond right away. Moscow has consistently denied claims that it takes part in cyberattacks.
In what the Kremlin refers to as a “de-Nazification” campaign, the Russian military has surrounded Ukrainian cities. The West has condemned this as an unprovoked attack and has imposed harsh penalties against Moscow as a result. View More
Viasat claimed in a statement that a “deliberate, isolated and external cyber event” was to blame for the disruption for clients in Ukraine and elsewhere, but the company has not yet offered a thorough, open justification.
In an email, business representative Chris Phillips said, “The network has stabilized and we are restoring service and activating terminals as rapidly as possible.” He added that the company was giving priority to “essential infrastructure and humanitarian assistance.”
Managing director of the Czech telecoms firm INTV, Jaroslav Strategy, said that the impacted modems appeared to be fully inoperative. He claimed that normally, the SurfBeam 2 modems’ four status lights would show whether they were online or not. The lights on the Viasat-made equipment would not switch on at all following the attack.
The Viasat representative claimed that a bug in the satellite network’s “administration section” had given the hackers remote access to the modems, forcing them offline. He claimed that some of the impacted devices would need to be replaced and that the majority of them would need to be reprogrammed, either on-site or at a repair facility.
The Viasat representative declined to provide any information and was evasive when asked what the “management part” of the network meant. A Eutelsat subsidiary continues to run KA-SAT and its related ground stations, which Viasat acquired from the European firm Eutelsat last year.
Questions were forwarded to Viasat through Eutelsat.
According to two persons with knowledge of the situation, Viasat has hired the American cybersecurity company Mandiant to look into the infiltration. Mandiant specializes in finding state-sponsored hackers.
Mandiant, ANSSI, and the NSA’s spokespeople all declined to comment.
Government customers who directly purchased services from Viasat, according to the corporation, were unaffected by the outage. However, a third firm manages the KA-SAT network and contracts out service via a number of distributors.
According to contracts published on ProZorro, a Ukrainian transparency portal, the military and security services of Ukraine have purchased a number of various communications equipment that utilize the Viasat network during the previous few years.
The Ukrainian military did not immediately respond to a message requesting comment.
Some online vendors are still holding off on replacing their hardware.
The Czech telecom chief, Strategy, claimed Viasat was not at fault.
On the morning of the invasion, when he arrived at work, a monitor displayed regional satellite coverage in the Czech Republic, neighboring Slovakia, and Ukraine, all of which were highlighted in red.
“What happened was immediately evident,” he stated.
Apple Patches iOS and macOS Against Newly Exploited WebKit Flaw
As 2022 comes to a close, Apple is delivering its customers a significant series of security upgrades that fix hundreds of flaws in numerous products, including a zero-day vulnerability that iOS users are reportedly being exploited by hackers.
As many Apple fans should already be aware, the Cupertino-based corporation released an update to iPhone 8 and subsequent models in November that appeared to be trivial and irrelevant. Apple did not reveal the exact reason for the patch, merely stating that “information will be forthcoming soon.”
The advisory now includes a real CVE and a brief summary indicating that iOS 16.1.2 plugs a significant security hole that threat actors may have used.
The problem, identified as CVE-2022-42856, is in WebKit, the rendering engine that apps utilize to show web content on both iOS and macOS.
By using “maliciously constructed online content” to inject into the target device, a type of confusion flaw might be used by threat actors to execute arbitrary code, possibly malware, or steal data.
According to the alert, “Apple is aware of a report that this problem may have been actively exploited against versions of iOS published before iOS 15.1.”
Google’s Threat Analysis Group researcher Clément Lecigne is credited for finding the problem.
On previous generation devices including the iPhone 6s, iPhone 7, iPhone SE, most current iPads, and even the seventh-generation iPod touch, iOS 15.7.2 and iPadOS 15.7.2 fix this horrible zero-day vulnerability.
Users of Apple TV are also impacted, and tvOS 16.2 by Apple fixes the problem. In addition, standalone upgrades to Safari for macOS Big Sur and macOS Monterey, as well as for macOS Ventura 13.1, fix the issue.
Numerous further security flaws in Apple’s devices are being fixed, and they are all detailed on this page.
iOS 16.2, a brand-new point update for iPhone and iPad owners, not only addresses security but also adds a number of new features and enhancements. Go to Settings -> General -> Software Upgrade and select Download and Install to update your iDevice.
At long last, foreign investors can now invest in China’s VPN Market
In Beijing, the Chinese government finally declared that foreign companies can now invest in the ownership of their virtual private network services throughout the nation.
However, foreign investors are only permitted to purchase up to 50% of VPN businesses established in China. This restriction gives China the ability to maintain control over domestic goods that have been approved while providing a significant incentive for future investments.
Changes to investment caps on information services for various application stores, internet providers, and other topics are also covered by the policy update.
Everyone is shocked by this news because China has been fighting international VPNs for a very long time, preventing their entry into the nation, and imposing fines and punishments on users who disobeyed the banning laws. The only issue China had with VPNs was that they allowed users to bypass the Great Firewall and access foreign websites that were supposed to be blocked due to government censorship.
China will not relax its stringent control and internet access restrictions, despite the new measures the Chinese government has taken to attract international investment.
The state will continue to put pressure on foreign businesses to follow its rules.
What regulations have China put into place for incoming international investors?
The Chinese government’s first priority is to impose internet censorship. They took care to keep local servers running so that user data could be stored and made accessible to local law enforcement. They also informed the investors that users who appear to be employing a censorship bypass method may be blocked and reported.
China seeks to develop its many service businesses under this new program.
Additionally, the Chinese government is considering allowing access to their digital behemoths Tencent and Alibaba by expanding the search engine market on the Chinese internet.
The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology of China is currently creating precise laws and regulations that would compel all Chinese businesses to allow the appearance of their competitors’ websites in search engine results.
It would be an unprecedented move for the Chinese internet, one that would make dominating it harder than it has ever been if the Ministry of Industry moves forward with these new laws and regulations.
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