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Security

  • Cloudflare bug leaks personal information to search engines

    US Internet giant Cloudflare revealed yesterday that a bug in its coding had put many users' sensitive information at risk. Google Zero engineer Travis Ormandy was the first to notice the mishap, and immediately tweeted a request to talk with someone from Cloudflare's security department. Could someone from cloudflare security urgently contact me. — Tavis Ormandy (@taviso) February 18, 2017 Ormandy had noticed that corrupted web pages were being returned from HTTP requests run through Cloudflare. When alerted, the company immediately noticed the problem was being caused by three minor features and shut them down before going about fixing the issue. At its peak, data...

  • Is TrackOFF the internet security service you’ve been sorely missing?

    With so much talk about hacking, identity theft and online fraud floating around in 2017, we'll totally understand if you never want to switch on a computer ever again. Luckily, there are ways to make your online journey a little safer. Browser add-ons, anti-virus programs and common sense are just some of the ways you can filter out -- and avoid -- the gunk from online pages you visit everyday. But some companies believe this isn't quite enough. That's where TrackOFF comes into play. The Baltimore-based security company claims to build the "best in class tools to secure users' identities and personal...

  • CNN’s Facebook accounts briefly breached by OurMine

    CNN's Facebook accounts were briefly compromised this weekend by hacking collective OurMine, Mashable reports. The group, now infamous for gaining access to accounts to peacock their security products, hit CNN's primary, International and Politics pages early morning in South Africa. This isn't the first time OurMine has been in the news in the past six months While the group didn't post anything incriminating or vile, it did flood the pages with its posters, and its usual message: "Hey, it's OurMine we are just testing your security, please contact us for more information." It seems that the group's chief motive was publicity. looks like @CNN...

  • Mozilla Firefox 51 now alerts users of dodgy HTTP logins

    Mozilla Firefox has been steadily losing ground to the likes of Google's Chrome n recent years, but the browser's creator is slowly starting to address the slide by focusing on security. Firefox 51.0 will now alert users who navigate to login pages that are not HTTPS enabled. The browser will display a larger, more noticeable "Connection is Not Secure" warning in the address bar and subsequent context bubble, alerting users of simple, non-encrypted HTTP connections. Any websites utilising passwords such as email services, or during your online banking will now indicate the security of the site in the URL bar. HTTP can...

  • Your Android Pattern Lock isn’t secure at all, research suggests

    Modern Android devices give users a number of authentication methods. From fingerprints to PIN codes, there are a slew of options to unlock your dear device. But some people still rely on the ancient Pattern Lock. Researchers from Britain's universities of Bath and Lancaster, and China's Northwest University, suggest that sliding your thumb seemingly uniquely across nine equidistant dots on a screen isn't as secure as you may have thought. The researchers noted that by using a recorded "video and computer vision algorithm software" -- effectively recording the motion of the hand over the screen -- the Pattern Lock can be...

  • New ransomware unlocks your PC – if you infect friends

    A new form of ransomware has emerged online that promises to unlock your PC if you infect your friends with said ransomware. Dubbed Popcorn Time, the malware lets you pay a ransom to unlock your PC. But if you'd rather not spend cash, you can send Popcorn Time to at least two other friends and have them pay a ransom. If the friends pay a ransom, then your PC will be unlocked as well, Bleeping Computer and MalwareHunterTeam reports. The new ransomware makes for rather astounding news, thanks to its friend-sharing "incentive" It also appears that Popcorn Time has "unfinished code", suggesting that entering...

  • Security, BYOD and IT trends you can expect to see in 2017

    Security remains one of the most debated and contested topics of the year. Predictions have come, and predictions have gone. Some have come true; others have been faintly amusing in their missing of the point, but up until recently one has been outstanding in its regularity -- people are not paying enough attention to security. So, what will come next in 2017? The landscape continues to shift and evolve as new threats and technologies surface, and already new trends have emerged... A survey undertaken by Spok found that 81% of CIOs put security first. Security itself has become the trend....

  • Ransomware: 9 best security practices your company should apply

    Ransomware. Today, one of the most wide-spread and damaging threats that internet users and organisations face. In short, it is a type of malware (malicious software) designed by cyber criminals to block access to a computer or system until a sum of money is paid. In true cyber war talk, it keeps the computer ransom. How does it happen? There are two main ways that a ransomware attack starts: it either happens via an email with a malicious attachment, or by visiting a compromised (often a legitimate, mainstream) website. Malicious email: Today’s cyber criminals are crafting emails that are indistinguishable from genuine...

  • FriendFinder Networks: 412m accounts hacked in 2016’s biggest breach

    Another adult dating company has been hacked, but this time it's FriendFinder. According to breach notification portal LeakedSource, details of around 412-million accounts have made their way into the darkest parts of the web. Notably, the sites affected include AdultFriendFinder (with around 300-million accounts), Cams.com (with another 60-million), and other accounts from the likes of Penthouse and Stripshow. In total, a quite ridiculous 412 214 295 accounts have been compromised, making this the biggest hack of the year so far. Warning signs Notably, warning signs of a possible breach emerged in October 2016 from an anonymous security researcher. FriendFinder Network's VP noted that the company...

  • Opera: OLX, Letgo tracks you more than Takealot, Gumtree

    New research from Opera Software found that over half of the top 60 Android shopping apps collect personal information via trackers. However, South Africa's OLX and Letgo were mentioned as some of the worst offenders as well. The two South African services were joined by the likes of Flipkart, Amazon, JC Penney, Best Buy and eBay Kleinanzeigen as the shopping apps with the highest amount of trackers. These trackers collected information such as your name, email address, location, phone number and search terms, Opera wrote in an emailed press release. The results were obtained using privacy mode in the updated Opera Max...

  • Update: DDoS attack on Dyn DNS leaves internet crippled

    Update #5, 22 October, 12.30am: Dyn has issued its lengthiest update yet, revealing a few more details about the DDoS attack on its DNS service. "On Friday October 21, 2016 at approximately 11:10 UTC, Dyn came under attack by a large Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack against our Managed DNS infrastructure in the US-East region," the update reads. "Customers affected may have seen regional resolution failures in US-East and intermittent spikes in latency globally. Dyn’s engineers were able to successfully mitigate the attack at approximately 13:20 UTC, and shortly after, the attack subsided." "At roughly 15:50 UTC a second DDoS attack...

  • EFF: 4 big security concerns for WhatsApp

    The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has been on WhatsApp's case this year, taking the platform to task over its new data-sharing policy with Facebook. Now, the US watchdog has hit out at WhatsApp, listing four major security concerns it should tackle. Unencrypted backups The first issue raised by the EFF was the way WhatsApp handles backups to the cloud. "In order to back messages up in a way that makes them restorable without a passphrase in the future, these backups need to be stored unencrypted at rest," the watchdog noted. The watchdog says users should never back up their WhatsApp data to the cloud "since...

  • Employees download malware every four seconds

    A new pair of studies reveals that employees are downloading unknown malware at a staggering rate. The Check Point 2016 Security Report and the SANS 2016 Threat Landscape Study revealed "critical challenges" facing businesses, Check Point wrote in an emailed press statement. The Check Point report saw the company analyse the activity of 31 000 Check Point "gateways" around the world. The SANS study, on the other hand, saw 300 IT security professionals being surveyed. "Researchers found a 9x increase in the amount of unknown malware plaguing businesses. This was fuelled by the employees -- who downloaded a new unknown malware every four...

  • FBI chief suggests you tape over your webcam

    People might call you paranoid if you encrypt your smartphone, or boast an endless array of 12+ character passwords, but new comments made by the FBI chief James Comey's webcam comments will make you feel a little more normal. Comey, while speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, called taping over your laptop's webcam -- to prevent potential prying eyes from snooping -- one of the "sensible things" human beings should be doing, akin to locking your house, or patting your wallet before disembarking the plane. "You go into any government office and we all have the little camera...

  • Nokia report: phones see 96% increase in malware

    Finnish company Nokia may no longer be a staple in the smartphone manufacturing space, but that doesn't mean it's totally out of the loop regarding software. The company's latest edition of its malware paper-- officially dubbed the Nokia Threat Intelligence Report -- uncovers some dark numbers in the world of malicious smartphone software. How dark? Well, for one, smartphones are becoming increasingly targeted in malware attacks. The report, which covers the first half of 2016, discovered a 96% increase in the average smartphone infection rate, up from 0.25% to 0.49%. This number peaked in April, when one out of every 120...