Tagged With malware

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In a blog post on Wednesday, Symantec security researchers wrote they had discovered at least eight Google Play Store apps that functioned as fronts for a "new and highly prevalent type of Android malware" called Android.Sockbot. The apps in question presented themselves as skins for player characters in popular app Minecraft: Pocket Edition and boasted "an install base ranging from 600,000 to 2.6 million devices."

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Google has removed roughly 300 apps from its Play Store after security researchers from several internet infrastructure companies discovered that the seemingly harmless apps -- offering video players and ringtones, among other features -- were secretly hijacking Android devices to provide traffic for large-scale distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks.

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Janus Cybercrime Solutions, the author of Petya -- the ransomware initially attributed with Wednesday's global cyberattacks -- resurfaced on Twitter early Thursday, seemingly offering to help those whose files can no longer be recovered.

The altruistic gesture, even if it does prove fruitless, is uncharacteristic of the criminal syndicate that launched an underworld enterprise by placing powerful exploits in the hands of others to deploy as they saw fit. It may also simply indicate that Janus would prefer not to be tagged with the spread of "NotPetya" -- so named by Kaspersky Lab, which has itself sought to differentiate between Janus' ransomware and that which worked havoc across Europe this week.

There's consensus now among malware experts that NotPetya is actually a wiper -- malware designed to inflict permanent damage -- not ransomware like Petya, which gave its victims' the option of recovering their data for a price.

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The Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation issued a rare cybersecurity bulletin linking North Korea to a series of attacks that have targeted global businesses and critical infrastructure since 2009.

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The seemingly local cyberattack that cut power to part of Ukraine's capital, Kiev, last December could have been a test run. And security researchers now say the malware believed to have caused the blackout is actually modular, mostly automated and highly adaptable. That means it doesn't just work on electrical grids in Ukraine. This dangerous cyberweapon might work in Sydney or Paris or New York -- anywhere really.

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Data backups can save your skin from all kinds of IT mishaps like dropping your laptop in a lake or having a virus blast through your hard drive. You should be backing everything up! Thanks to the recent spree of ransomware attacks, it's once again time to evaluate your backup system, so you're prepared in the event that some malicious actor locks up your computer.

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An anonymous 22-year-old security researcher who goes by MalwareTech has, at least temporarily, managed to find a kill switch for the ransomware that spread across the globe yesterday. He insists his discovery was entirely accidental but experts credit his quick action for mostly stopping the malware from spreading to the United States.

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The hacker's name is Janit0r. You've probably never heard of him, but perhaps you've heard of his work. Janit0r is reportedly the one behind a particularly gnarly but undeniably fascinating form of malware called BrickerBot. BrickerBot, as the name implies, will brick internet of things (IoT) devices that fail a simple security test. This is surely illegal, but I love it.