The Cyber News Rundown brings you the latest happenings in cyber news weekly. Who am I? I’m Connor Madsen, a Webroot Threat Research Analyst, and a guy with a passion for all things security. Any more questions? Just ask.
UK-Based Cryptocurrency Hit By Cyberattack
Prior to the official launch of Electroneum, a UK-based cryptocurrency that uses smartphones for its mining process, was targeted by a DDoS attack that shut down both the website and the app for several days. The attack effectively blocked all users from accessing their accounts, as the entire network was forced offline, to ensure the safety of investors’ funds.
Canadian University Held for Ransom
In the past week, officials have been working with affected students to secure their personal information after hackers breached the university’s systems and gained access to student records. The university has since taken its email system offline, as the hackers were spreading the leaked information throughout the email lists. Along with the data circulation, the hackers also demanded the university pay a large ransom of roughly 23,000 USD within 48 hours, though officials are still uncertain when the breach itself occurred.
WaterMiner Cryptocurrency Mod for GTA 5
As more cryptocurrency miners are embedded in software, one Russian hacker has gone a step further by exploiting a mod for the popular game Grand Theft Auto 5. The exploit silently uses a computer’s power to mine digital currency and, with the help of a modified version of the XMRig miner, can hide itself if it suspects monitoring software is active.
Paradise Papers Expose Latest Offshore Dealings
A sizable data dump from offshore law firm Appleby was released and quickly distributed across the globe in the last week. Initial reports reveal that nearly 1.4TB of data was included in the dump, which contained private investment figures belonging to large corporations and prominent political figures. While the perpetrator of the leak has not yet been identified, this event brings to light the unconscionable lack of security that such firms employ, even when dealing with the most sensitive of client data.
Parity Bug Freezes $300 Million in Cryptocurrency
Although the full impact has not yet been quantified, a user bug caused at least 70 Ethereum accounts to completely deactivate, leaving approximately $300 million worth of cryptocurrency completely inaccessible. The bug stems from a recent patch that Parity developers implemented after a previous breach led to the theft of over $30 million in cryptocurrency. At this time, the future of the locked funds is still undecided. Developers are considering a radical change (termed a “hard fork”) to the currency to unlock affected accounts, but this solution isn’t appealing to many investors.