Silensec Newsletter

Top News

British Airways confirms thousands of frequent-flyer accounts hacked

British Airways is the latest high-profile company to fall victim to a large-scale hack. The company confirmed on Sunday that a security breach affected tens of thousands of its users' frequent-flyer accounts. The UK-based airline told Mashable that users' personal data, such as travel history and credit card information, have not been viewed or stolen. However, British Airways has temporarily frozen affected accounts, and said some people may not be able to access their earned miles at this time. Read more...

Google Chrome will banish Chinese certificate authority for breach of trust

Google's Chrome browser will stop trusting all digital certificates issued by the China Internet Network Information Center following a major trust breach last week that led to the issuance of unauthorized credentials for Gmail and several other Google domains. Read more...




Top News

UK police arrest 57 cyber crime suspects

UK police have arrested 57 cyber crime suspects in 25 separate operations in the past week co-ordinated by the National Crime Agency (NCA) in partnership with industry and government. The arrests relate to a range of cyber crimes, including network intrusion and data theft from multinational companies and government agencies, distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, cyber-enabled fraud, and malware development. Read more...

Hackers Slam Blue Coat Claiming It 'Pressured Security Researcher Into Cancelling Talk On Its Tech

The company, which is set to be acquired by Bain Capital for $2.4 billion some time in the first half of this year, has been accused of “bullying” Airbus Group Innovations researcher Raphael Rigo into cancelling his talk. He planned to disclose findings from his explorations into Blue Coat’s ProxySG technology, which is designed to look for malicious or policy-bypassing traffic going through businesses’ networks. Rigo was due to detail the workings of the prorietary operating system behind that technology, SG OS. Read more...




Top News

Cybercriminals phish iCloud credentials from victims of iPhone, iPad theft

Attackers have created phishing sites to trick users whose iOS devices have been lost or stolen into handing over their iCloud credentials. Cybercriminals have recently created multiple phishing sites in order to trick iOS device owners into providing login credentials for their iCloud accounts. The attackers appear to be focusing on users whose iPads and iPhones have been lost or stolen. It’s possible that the attackers are running this phishing operation as part of a service for iOS device thieves on underground forums. Read more...

DRAM Rowhammer vulnerability Leads to Kernel Privilege Escalation

Security researchers have find out ways to hijack the Intel-compatible PCs running Linux by exploiting the physical weaknesses in certain varieties of DDR DRAM (double data rate dynamic random-access memory) chips and gaining higher kernel privileges on the system. Read more...



Major Hacks of the Week

LinkedIn Hack Tool Exposes Users' Emails without Exploiting Any Vulnerability

A Free Chrome, Firefox and Safari web browser plugin floating around the web, called 'Sell Hack' allows users to view the hidden email address of any LinkedIn user, means anyone can grab email addresses that we use for professional purposes. When installed, the 'Sell Hack' plugin will pop up a 'Hack In' button on LinkedIn profiles and further automatically mines email addresses of LinkedIn user. Read more... 

Minimal oversight of GCHQ hacking is 'a major scandal

Details of GCHQ's hacking operations and attempts to weaken encryption were revealed in a parliamentary committee report into the UK's surveillance capabilities. The  Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) review, published last week, revealed GCHQ makes the majority of decisions about hacking, and its operations to weaken encryption, internally and without telling ministers exactly what it is doing. Read more... 

Major Vulnerabilities Disclosed

Adobe Flash Player Update Patches 11 Critical Vulnerabilities

Adobe has rolled-out an update for its popular Flash Player software that patches a set of 11 critical security vulnerabilities in its program, most of which potentially allow hackers to remotely execute arbitrary code on vulnerable systems. Read more...  

Legal, Regulatory and Corporate


Facebook Login hijacking tool offered to black hat hackers

Penetration testing company Sakurity has openly named and blamed Facebook over a security vulnerability that it says exists on websites with a Facebook login option. Sakurity explains how to navigate around Facebook's JavaScript and existing login intelligence using a special redirect command. This will drive ‘victims' to a specified location where they are in fact logged into the Sakurity Facebook account. Sakurity then triggers the Facebook login that a user would expect on the client website so that its account is connected to the victim's account. Sakurity founder Egor Homakov says that from that point, Sakurity can log in that user's account directly to change email/password, cancel bookings, read private messages and so on. Read more... 

Yahoo unveils sneak peek at end-to-end email encryption plugin

Yahoo teamed up with Google to offer a browser-based encryption plugin after both companies were hit by allegations that the US government had intercepted their data by tapping into datacenter links.The plugin works by encrypting email messages on a person's computer before it travels across Yahoo's networks, foiling any now-public program that allowed messages to be intercepted.

The plugin is now available on code-sharing site Github, and is available for scrutiny by developers and security experts. Read more...

Security and Beyond

EquationDrug: Sophisticated, stealthy data theft for over a decade

According to Kaspersky Lab researchers, The Equation Group uses expensive tools and sophisticated Trojans to steal data from their victims, and they also use "classic" spying techniques to deliver malicious payloads. Tools used by the group include EquationLaser, EquationDrug, DoubleFantasy, TripleFantasy, Fanny and GrayFish. The Equation Group" surpasses all others in complexity and techniques. Deemed the "ancestor" of Stuxnet and Flame, as Zero Days were used by The Equation Group before other threat actors -- and potentially shared by them -- additional details concerning the group's activities now suggest the group may have been in operation since the 1990's. Read more..
Security Awareness Tip

How to stop DDoS attacks

A denial of service (DoS) attack is an incident in which a user or organization is deprived of the services of a resource they would normally expect to have. Typically, the loss of service is the inability of a particular network service, such as e-mail, to be available or the temporary loss of all network connectivity and services...
There's no way to completely protect your network from denial-of-service attacks, especially with the prevalence of distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks on the Internet today. It's extremely difficult to differentiate an attack request from a legitimate request because they often use the same protocols/ports and may resemble each other in content.
However, there are some things you can do to reduce your risk:

  • Purchase a lot of bandwidth. Is the easiest  but also the most expensive solution. It makes perpetrating a DoS attack much more difficult because it's more bandwidth that an attacker has to clog.
  • Use DoS attack detection technology. Intrusion prevention system and firewall manufacturers now offer DoS protection technologies that include signature detection and connection verification techniques to limit the success of DoS attacks.
  • Prepare for DoS response. The use of throttling and rate-limiting technologies can reduce the effects of a DoS attack. One such response mode stops all new inbound connections in the event of a DoS attack, allowing established connections and new outbound connections to continue.
Silensec Editorial Team

Editor: Dr. Almerindo Graziano
Dr. Graziano is the Silensec CEO. He holds an MSc in Electronic Engineering and a PhD in Mobile Computer Security, both from the University of Naples, Italy. Dr. Graziano has consulted in information security for private and government organisations across Europe, Africa and Middle East over the last 15 years. He is also a BSI-certified ISO27001 Lead Auditor trainer and auditor

Vice Editor: George Nicolaou (BSc, MSc)
George Nicolaou (BSc, MSc) leads the Silensec Malware Analysis Lab (MAL). He received his BSc in Computer Science and MSc in Advanced Computing Security from the University of Bath in UK, where he pursued research in malware and vulnerability analysis. For many years George has also been the Head of Research and Development department of the Astalavista Security Community. George is also a frequent speaker at security conferences around the world on advanced malware analysis, reverse engineering and exploit development techniques.

Associate Editor: Joseph Alulu (B.A)
Joseph Alulu leads the Silensec Marketing Department. He holds a Bachelors of Arts Degree from the University of Nairobi in Kenya. He publishes the weekly Silensec Newsletter, keeping you up to date on the latest information security news as well as creating information security awareness.

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