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February 19, 2013

iOS 6.1.2 has been released by Apple.

The minor update to iOS includes a resolution for a battery drain bug that impacted users of Exchange servers which also caused excessive data usage, but does not fix the passcode bypass bug that exists in prior iOS 6 versions, which is instead targeted by an upcoming 6.1.3 update. The brief release notes mention only this for the 6.1.2 update...

CNS News

February 13, 2013

Spanish authorities announced the breakup of a cybercrime gang that used a "ransomware" virus to lock computers throughout Europe, display false messages claiming the action was taken by police and demand payment of $135 to unlock the computers.

The gang, operating from the Mediterranean resort cities of Benalmadena and Torremolinos, made at least $1.35 million annually, said Deputy Interior Minister Francisco Martinez. Their notices to victims were accompanied by false threats claiming they were under investigation for accessing child pornography or illegal file-sharing. The 27-year-old Russian alleged to be the gang's founder and virus developer was detained in the United Arab Emirates at the request of Spanish police while on vacation and an extradition petition is pending, Martinez said. Six more Russians, two Ukrainians and two Georgians were arrested in Spain last week.

February 8, 2013

Our Threat report for H2 2012 is published. Read it if you want to know what's going on and what the threat landscape is looking like. It is interesting reading, highly recommended!

If you are in a hurry and want to save the reading for later, there's still one point that affects most users and deserves immediate attention. Vulnerabilities and patching. One of the major trends is no doubt the increasing importance of exploits and vulnerabilities. And you have probably already heard the nagging about how important it is to patch your system. That IS good advice and our threat report shows how it is getting even more important. But I don't want to just repeat the nagging. I want to take the opportunity to dig a bit deeper into this issue and explain what it is all about.

February 7, 2013

Malware is becoming more sophisticated, actively resisting traditional detection technologies. This development is posing new challenges to security companies. According to independent test organizations, almost one out of ten malware attacks succeed.

One in ten - sounds like a lot, but what does this mean in practice? One of our product managers illustrated the significance of a high threat detection rate with a practical example. On average, an employee faces two malware per year (depending on the Internet usage profile of the users and the other layers of the protection, of course). In a company of 500 employees, with a detection rate of 92%, 80 infections in total will pass the traditional malware protection. If the detection rate is 99%, only 10 attacks out of one thousand will succeed. A minor difference in percentage points can make up a major difference in practice. With this in mind, we believe that detection rate is a key factor in the value of security.

February 4, 2013

Today is Data Privacy Day, a global "holiday" aimed at raising awareness about online security and privacy.

However, it's hard not to be aware of the constant threats that hammer on our digital doors. The joy of the Internet is that we're all connected to each other, making it easy to share information and commerce. But there's also a dark side: Just as in the "real" world, the Net is full of evildoers who want to take advantage of the less-than-vigilant among us. Don't be one of them. On Data Privacy Day, take some time to secure your virtual borders. Here are five things you can do right now that will give you peace of mind and make it little harder for the jerks who want to steal your data, your identity and your cash.

February 4, 2013

Anonymous has hacked the U.S. Federal Reserve, and released login credentials and personal information belonging to 4,000 American banking executives. The action is part of the ongoing campaign to reform computer crime law, known as Operation Last Resort.

According to reports, Anonymous leaked the partial internet login credentials and personal information such as addresses and phone numbers belonging to over 4,000 American banking executives on Sunday, Jan.3. The information was leaked via Pastebin and a randomly chosen government website with low security, the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center. Operation Last Resort (#OpLastResort) is part of a concerted effort to force the U.S. government to reform computer crime law in the wake of Aaron Swartz's death. Aaron Swartz, a brilliant technologist and Internet freedom fighter, was laid to rest last month after committing suicide. In honor of Aaron and other Internet freedom fighters, Anonymous launched Operation Last Resort.

February 2, 2013

The tools for safe cyber-living exist. We need to feel they're relevant to us

It has been a fragile week for cyber-security, with system breaches affecting a quarter-of-a-million Twitter accounts coming on the heels of online assaults against both the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, apparently by highly sophisticated Chinese hackers. Given the vulnerability of these high-profile targets, ordinary users might be forgiven for feeling any residual digital euphoria replaced by growing unease. What does it mean to be secure in an online realm where few people understand anything of the frantic combat taking place around them?

February 2, 2013

An unusual Mac bug has surfaced in OS X that causes any application to immediately crash just by typing a short character sequence.

The bug was first reported on OpenRadar and is thought to relate to the spell checking and autocorrection features, though the bug is also replicable in prior versions of Mac OS X suggesting that may not be the case. If for some reason you want to try this out yourself, just type the following short string into any OS X app that has a text entry field: File:///

January 31, 2013

A piece of legislation that permits US agencies to snoop on foreign nationals by hacking into cloud servers of Google and Apple, has sent alarm bells ringing among privacy campaigners, a British media report says.

The renewal of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), would grant the US government the right to spy on anyone using the internet storage facilities provided by Google and Apple. One of the most disquieting provisions of the FISA justifies snooping even without the fig leaf of a threat to national security. Officials could pry into foreign individuals' cloud data for purely political reasons as well. Simply stated, it means that any non-US citizen who stores data on the cloud services operated by Amazon, Google and Apple, could open themselves up to a probe by US authorities, the Daily Mail reports.

CNS News

January 31, 2013

Mac computers have stopped running programs written using the Java programming language in their browsers, as Apple blocked it because of security problems.

Apple has previously blocked, then unblocked, the latest version of Java on the most recent versions of its Mac operating system. On Thursday, Apple also started blocking an older version of the Mac system, called Snow Leopard, from running Java 6, also an older version. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security recommends disabling Java in Web browsers because it has provided pathways for hackers to take control of computers that visit a website rigged with malicious software.


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