Cybersecurity News of the Week, August 1, 2021

Individuals at Risk

Cyber Privacy

The Privacy Battle That Apple Isn’t Fighting: California has begun enforcing a browser-level privacy setting, but you still can’t find that option in Safari or iOS. Wired, July 30, 2021

Cyber Update

Apple releases iOS 14.7.1 with fix for Apple Watch unlock bug, more: Apple is releasing iOS 14.7.1 to the public today, exactly one week after the release of iOS 14.7. This comes after some users found that their iPhone did not automatically unlock their Apple Watch after updating to iOS 14.7.1 last week, which today’s update fixes. Apple is also releasing iPadOS 14.7.1 today. 9to5Mac, July 26, 2021

Cyber Warning

This Android malware records your screen — what you can do: Vultur banking Trojan uses all sorts of nasty tricks. Toms Guide, July 31, 2021

Watch out for these scams, targeting Amazon’s customers: Most people are fans of the convenience Amazon brings to online shopping, and that’s precisely what cybercriminals are betting on. WeLiveSecurity, July 30, 2021

NSA Warns Public Networks are Hacker Hotbeds: Agency warns attackers targeting teleworkers to steal corporate data. ThreatPost, July 30, 2021

Cyber Humor

Information Security Management for the Organization

Information Security Management

5 Ways to Increase Password Safety: You make password decisions every week. Maybe you create a new account, reset a password or respond to a password change prompt. And each time you make a seemingly small or insignificant mistake in regard to password safety, such as not creating strong enough passwords or using the same password on multiple accounts, you increase your risk. SecurityIntelligence, July 30, 2021

Building Effective Business Cases to Cover Cybersecurity Costs: With the global average cost of a data breach totaling $3.86 million in 2020, the topic of security continues to be a major pressure point and a board-level agenda item. So why do security programs still seem to lack adequate funding, urgency and support until a breach or lawsuit occurs or auditors demand change? Verizon’s 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report analyzed 29,207 incidents, of which 5,258 were confirmed data breaches compared to 3,950 confirmed data breaches in 2020. This means more executives are going to wish they spent more time, attention and resources on this area, but might still balk at cybersecurity costs. SecurityIntelligence, July 30, 2021

5 Cybersecurity Tactics To Protect The Cloud: Cybersecurity and risk management have moved on top of the boardroom agenda. According to a Gartner survey 61 percent of chief information officers (CIOs) are increasing their investment in cyber and information security. The global research and advisory firm predicts that the spending on information security and risk management technology and services will increase by 12.4 percent by the end of this year. Even more telling is that companies started adding cyber security experts directly to the board. Forbes, July 29, 2021

Microsoft: Zero Trust security just hit the mainstream: If you work in cybersecurity and you don’t know about Zero Trust, you’re among a very small minority, according to a Microsoft survey. ZDNet, July 28, 2021

7 Hot Cyber Threat Trends to Expect at Black Hat: A sneak peek of some of the main themes at Black Hat USA next month. DarkReading, July 22, 2021

Cyber Warning

This unusual malware attack can go from first contact to launching ransomware in just 48 hours: Human operators make BazaCall malware harder than usual to detect malicious email. The group sometimes installs nasty Ryuk ransomware. ZDNet, July 30, 2021

HTML smuggling is the latest cybercrime tactic you need to worry about: It will be hard to catch these smugglers, as they’re abusing an essential element of web browsers that allow them to assemble code at endpoints, bypassing perimeter security. TechRepublic, July 30, 2021

Ransomware: These are the two most common ways hackers get inside your network: Two attack methods are the most popular – and most successful – techniques ransomware gangs are using to lay the foundations for their cyber-extortion campaigns. ZDNet, July 29, 2021

CISA’s Top 30 Bugs: One’s Old Enough to Buy Beer: There are patches or remediations for all of them, but they’re still being picked apart. Why should attackers stop if the flaws remain unpatched, as so many do? ThreatPost, July 29, 2021

Windows “PetitPotam” network attack – how to protect against it: French researcher Gilles Lionel, who goes by @topotam77, recently published proof-of-concept code that attackers could use to take over a Windows network. NakedSecurity, July 26, 2021

Cybersecurity in Society

Cyber Crime

Ransomware attacks rise despite US call for clampdown on cybercriminals: Known attacks have quadrupled in the pandemic but lax disclosure rules mean true figure may be far worse. FT, July 30, 2021

UC San Diego Health Breach Tied to Phishing Attack: Employee email takeover exposed personal, medical data of students, employees and patients. ThreatPost, July 29, 2021

Data Breach Costs at Record High, Zero Trust, AI and Automation Help Reduce Costs: Data breaches have been growing in numbers and scale, taking longer to detect and contain. The average total cost of a data breach is at its highest of 17 years, at $4.24 million. The year over year increase of 10% is the largest single year cost increase recorded in the last 7 years. SecurityIntelligence, July 28, 2021

Cyber Attack

Novel Meteor Wiper Used in Attack that Crippled Iranian Train System: A July 9th attack disrupted service and taunted Iran’s leadership with hacked screens directing customers to call the phone of Iranian Supreme Leader Khamenei with complaints. ThreatPost, July 30, 2021

Cyber Surveillance — Pegasus

Pegasus snooping scandal: Israel launches probe into allegations against NSO: Israel has launched a probe into the allegations of wrongdoing against the NSO Group in the Pegasus snooping scandal, with authorities inspecting the cybersecurity company’s offices over alleged abuses of its spyware by several government clients which have raised eyebrows the world over. Economic Times, July 30, 2021

US voices concern with Israeli officials about Pegasus revelations: Top Biden administration official reportedly raised questions about spyware sold by NSO Group. TheGuardian, July 30, 2021

Cyber Espionage — Solar Winds

DOJ says SolarWinds hack impacted 27 state attorneys’ offices: The Russian hackers who orchestrated the SolarWinds supply chain attack pivoted to the internal network of the US Department of Justice, from where they gained access to Microsoft Office 365 email accounts belonging to employees at 27 state attorneys’ offices, the DOJ said in a statement on Friday afternoon. TheRecord, July 30, 2021

Cyber Fine

Amazon hit with $886m fine for alleged data law breach: Amazon has been hit with an $886.6m (£636m) fine for allegedly breaking European Union data protection laws. BBC, July 31, 2021

Cyber Defense

Free Ransomware Decryption Site Celebrates Milestone as New Threats Emerge: As Europol celebrated the fifth anniversary of its anti-ransomware initiative this week, menacing new ransomware threats made it clear that the fight against cyber threats is never-ending. eSecurity Planet, July 29, 2021

Know Your Enemy

Tuya may be the China threat that beats Russia’s ransomware attacks: In May, Americans lined up at gas stations for days because of a Russian ransomware attack. Recently, a similar Russia-sourced attack struck a large group of companies via software used by IT departments to manage remote computers. But those attacks are about money, not about power or information, and a little-known Chinese technology company, Tuya, is on the verge of being able to blow Russian hackers away. TheHill, July 30, 2021

Some ransomware gangs lose interest in extortion sites: In late 2019, the ransomware group known as Maze pioneered a tactic that soon spread throughout the cybercrime underground: steal encrypted data and threaten to release it publicly unless a ransom is paid. TheRecord, July 30, 2021

The Life Cycle of a Breached Database: Every time there is another data breach, we are asked to change our password at the breached entity. But the reality is that in most cases by the time the victim organization discloses an incident publicly the information has already been harvested many times over by profit-seeking cybercriminals. Here’s a closer look at what typically transpires in the weeks or months before an organization notifies its users about a breached database. KrebsOnSecurity, July 29, 2021

FBI tracking more than 100 active ransomware groups: While some ransomware gangs have gone silent, many continue to operate, pointing to the challenge authorities face in cracking down on the problem. NBC, July 27, 2021

PlugwalkJoe Does the Perp Walk: One day after last summer’s mass-hack of Twitter, KrebsOnSecurity wrote that 22-year-old British citizen Joseph “PlugwalkJoe” O’Connor appeared to have been involved in the incident. When the U.S. Justice Department last week announced O’Connor’s arrest and indictment, his alleged role in the Twitter compromise was well covered in the media. KrebsOnSecurity, July 26, 2021

National Cybersecurity

Fixing the Fractured Federal Approach to Cybersecurity: Everyone knows the U.S. has a cybersecurity problem and the Biden administration’s emergency request for $10 billion starts out by acknowledging we are in crisis. The question is what to do about it. Nextgov, July 30, 2021

Here’s how the White House wants to reform cybersecurity management for agencies: The White House wants to change how it manages agency cybersecurity efforts by shifting away from self attestation and compliance approaches to more continuous monitoring of networks and outcome-focused measurements, according to the federal chief information security officer (CISO). Federal News Network, July 30, 2021

Biden Pushes Cybersecurity Upgrades For Critical Infrastructure After Recent Hacks: President Biden just signed a national security directive aimed at boosting defenses against ransomware attacks and the hacking of critical infrastructure like energy, food, water and power systems. NPR, July 28, 2021

Biden warns cyber attacks could lead to a “real shooting war”: US president’s remarks follow breaches that paralyzed critical services. ars technica, July 28, 2021

Become A CyberGuardian

Protect your community: take the CyberGuardian Pledge, join our email list, get invited to events.

Take the Pledge