5 million GMail accounts breached, and I was one of them

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There is a bit of irony in this blog post, if you will.  Over my time at Webroot, I have become a major advocate and vocal evangelist of digital security, from talking about major level breaches to sharing my experiences with dating-website scams.  My work has focused around the education of those who will listen and read my work on the value of keeping one’s self safe at home, work, and while traveling.  Like many others, I never thought (often quite ignorantly) that my information could get out there in a breach. And if it did, I was sure I […]

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Apple’s Sept 9 Event: New (and larger) iPhones and (gasp), a Watch!

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Well, September 9th is here, and the launch of Destiny, one of the most (if not the most) anticipated video games ever, isn’t the only major piece of news coming out of the tech world today. You may have heard that one Cupertino fruit-logo’d tech company had an event today. And now the details of Apple’s next big(ger) things are official. Initial takeaway? They’re pretty in-line with the the rumors that have been swirling around for months now. In other words, people got a lot of what they were expecting. Is that a good or bad thing? Depends on what camp you’re in. Probably. […]

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Cryptographic Locker

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It seems as though every few weeks we see a new encrypting ransomware variant. It’s not surprising either since the business model of ransoming files for money is tried and true. Whether it’s important work documents, treasured wedding pictures, or complete discographies of your favorite artists, everyone has valuable data they don’t want taken. This is the last thing anyone wants to see.   This variant does bring some new features to the scene, but also fails at other lessons learnt by previous variants. Starting with the new features this variant will now just “delete” the files after encrypting them (it just […]

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The Weekend of Nude Celebrity Selfies, iCloud, and How to Protect Your Personal Info

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What do celebrities (mostly young and female), 4chan, hackers, Bitcoin, and iCloud have in common? They’re all ingredients of a scandalous Labor Day Weekend, one that was filled with celebrity ‘skin’, outrage, confirmation (and denial)…and now an FBI investigation into the crazy incident that has everyone talking. But is it the ultimate internet scandal or a sobering reality of the importance of safeguarding your content to reduce the risk of it being stolen? Both. Before we go into that, however, in a nutshell (and in case you don’t know by now), here’s what happened: On Sunday, users of the often-controversial message-board 4chan, saw […]

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A Primer on BitCoin

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Editors Note: One day, we found ourselves discussing the security of bitcoin, only to realize that many readers may not truly understand the digital currency. Luckily, a team member’s father, Eoin Meehan, is well versed in the subject and has submitted a guest blog to help everyone understand this popular form of cryptocurrency. Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency, reportedly designed by Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008. To fully understand how it works we must look at how “ordinary” currencies work. To quote Sheldon Cooper “It was a warm, summer’s evening in ancient Greece …” Well, no, we don’t need to go back […]

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Sony’s PSN Network Haymaker’d by DDoS Attack; Exec’s Plane Grounded Over Bomb Threat

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Sony had a rough weekend. And not just Sony; last weekend wasn’t the best time to be a gamer. Here’s the skinny… Early yesterday morning, Sony’s PlayStation Network (PSN for short) was hit with a massive Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, causing it to crash temporarily and hamper online play for many PlayStation gamers. (Source: Google Images) Sony Online Entertainment President John Smedley quickly took to Twitter to let users know about the attack before tweeting that he’d be offline for three hours as he flew back to San Diego from Dallas on AA Flight #362. Well, not long […]

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ZeroLocker

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Recently in the news we saw FireEye and Fox-IT provide the ability to decrypt files encrypted by older crpytolocker variants. They used the command and control servers seized by the FBI during operation Tovar. Since they have access to those RSA keys they essentially have the password required for every single file encrypted by a Cryptolocker variant that used Evgeniy Bogachev’s botnet. That is a major portion of the traditional​ red GUI cryptolocker that became famous. Any previous victims from these variants that still have encrypted files left on their machine should be able to decrypt them with ease. All they have to do is […]

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8 Tips to Stay Safe Online

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Yesterday, the New York Times published an exclusive story on what many are stating to be the largest series of hacks ever, all revealed by Hold Security in their latest report.  With a report of over 1.2 billion unique username-password combinations and over 500 million e-mail addressed amassed by a Russian hacker group dubbed CyberVol (vol is Russian for thief).  While the reactions among the security industry are mixed, with some researchers raising a few questions of the masterwork behind the hack, the story does bring to the public’s attention the necessity of strong, personal, online security policies for all […]

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A Look at PC Gamer Security

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In the new study on security and PC gamers, Webroot found that many gamers sacrifice their protection to maximize system performance and leave themselves vulnerable to phishing attacks and gaming-focused malware. The study also provides tips for protecting gaming credentials and safeguarding against phishing attacks. Webroot PC Gamer Security Study Findings: 47% experienced an online attack with 55% of the attacks impacting system performance. 35% of PC gamers choose not to use security or rely on free clean-up tools. “Does not slow down system performance” ranked among the most important security program characteristic to gamers and Webroot has the first […]

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Critroni/Onion – Newest Addition to Encrypting Ransomware

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In my last blog post about a week ago, I talked about how Cryptolocker and the like are not dead and we will continue to see more of them in action. It’s a successful “business model” and I don’t see it going away anytime soon. Not even a few days after my post a new encrypting ransomware emerged. This one even targets Russians! Presenting Critroni (aka. Onion)   This newest edition of encrypting ransomware uses the same tactics of contemporary variants including: paying through anonymous tor, using Bitcoin as the currency, changing the background, dropping instructions in common directories on how to pay the scam. […]

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