Cyber Security News & Trends – 02-22-19


This week, ATM hacking is so easy cybercriminals turn it into a game, the flaws in blockchain are investigated, and the British Labour Party lockdown their data.

SonicWall Spotlight

January 2019 Cyber Threat Data: New Year, New Malware Attack Variants – SonicWall Blog

  • SonicWall’s threat blog for January 2019 finds that while overall malware attacks are dropping, the variants of malware are growing with twice as many new threats diagnosed compared to the same time last year.

Cyber Security News

Once Hailed as Unhackable, Blockchains Are Now Getting Hacked – MIT Technology Review

  • MIT Technology review traces how all blockchain technology payments like Bitcoin are vulnerable to “51% Attacks” due to the inherent structure of blockchain. Renting enough mining power to attack bitcoin would cost more than $260,000 per hour but, with lesser-known blockchain currencies, this figure drops dramatically.

Russian Hackers Targeted European Research Groups, Microsoft Says – New York Times

  • Microsoft reports that the hacker group Fancy Bear, often associated with Russian intelligence, are targeting European think tanks and NGOs in the lead up to the 2019 European Parliament election. Russian officials deny any links to the group.

Data-Spewing Spectre Chip Flaws Can’t Be Killed by Software Alone, Google Boffins Conclude – The Register (UK)

  • Although Intel announced hardware fixes for some of the Spectre vulnerabilities in 2018, Google researchers have concluded that the proposed solution of simply fixing the remaining issues with software is not a viable option.

ATM Hacking Has Gotten so Easy, the Malware’s a Game – Wired

  • ATM hacking is usually seen as easily preventable if basic cybersecurity protocols are followed. However, many ATMs worldwide simply never receive updates. As a result, theft from ATMs has become so easy that some hackers have turned their hacking malware into a game.

Ransomware Attacks Classified as a Felony Under Proposed Maryland Bill – Health IT Security

  • Proposed legislation in Maryland wants to lower the financial threshold for a ransomware attack to be considered as a felony from $10,000 to $1,000 USD.

POS Firm Says Hackers Planted Malware on Customer Networks – ZDNet

  • A Point of Sale (POS) company based in Minnesota announced that a security breach in January 2019 led to almost 140 of its customers being affected by malware. Full details are not available, but it is likely that any card details used on the POS systems while the malware was active were compromised.

When Cyberattacks Pack a Physical Punch – Threat Post

  • “Physical” cyberattacks, where hardware is compromised or physical infrastructure like a burglar alarm is attacked, now count for more than one in ten data breaches. Threat Post investigates the shrinking gap between cyber and physical security.

Data Breach Rumours Abound as UK Labour Party Locks Down Access to Member Databases – The Register (UK)

  • The UK Labour Party announced this week that its databases would be unavailable after confirmed access by “individuals who are not, or are no longer, authorised to do so.” It is likely this refers to the recently launched Independent Group of breakaway MPs who made headlines leaving the party this past week.

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SonicWall Staff