December 2016 Internet Security Report


Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! December 2016 was full of the usual Phishing, Malvertising, weak security of IoT devices and large breaches of user accounts that the rest of the year had delivered. If you have a Yahoo email account or an email service that is run through Yahoo’s mail service, please change your passwords for those accounts and consider moving to another provider as Yahoo has had two major publicly disclosed breaches in 2016 alone.

If you are still thinking of a new year’s resolution, please consider “changing your passwords to passphrases”.

Threats

Breaches

  • Yahoo released in December that there was another breach, separate from the previously disclosed breach earlier in the year. In this newly disclosed breach, the thieves stole more than a billion user accounts’ data. Yahoo states that “potentially affected accounts, the stolen user account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords (using MD5) and, in some cases, encrypted or un-encrypted security questions and answers.”
    If you have a Yahoo account please change your password for this account. If you have used your Yahoo account password for anything else, please change that password too.
    https://krebsonsecurity.com/2016/12/yahoo-one-billion-more-accounts-hacked/

Patches and Updates

October 2016 Internet Security Report


Joomla takes the cake for most serious exploits doing the rounds this month, with a combination of account creation and privilege escalation vulnerabilities proving an easy way to take complete control of various versions of Joomla. The diagnosis is grim for anyone who was not paying enough attention to patch within 24 hours as mass exploitation of these vulnerabilities have been reported, if you have not patched you should assume your Joomla site is already compromised.

Threats

  • Joomla 3.6.4 was released to address account creation, elevation, and modification vulnerabilities that are being actively exploited in mass across the web just days after the vulnerabilities were disclosed. Anyone who has not already updated should consider their site compromised.
    https://www.joomla.org/announcements/release-news/5678-joomla-3-6-4-released.html
  • Microsoft patched 45 security flaws in their October 2016 patches, one of which is being actively exploited as part of a malvertising campaign. This also being Microsoft first month with their new patching approach, removing the ability to pick-and-choose patches to apply. This new system puts much more pressure on software maintainers to push out patches for their applications that break due to patching, as companies would otherwise have to choose with being vulnerable to exploits, or have a functional application.
    https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/security/ms16-oct.aspx
  • Google has released some unpatched 0-day vulnerabilities in Windows after the time limit of responsible disclosure of actively exploited vulnerabilities ran out. This vulnerability has no patch available and is “local privilege escalation in the Windows kernel that can be used as a security sandbox escape”. Windows 10 Anniversary update is not vulnerable and Microsoft reports that older versions of Microsoft will provide patches on Tuesday, November 8.
    https://security.googleblog.com/2016/10/disclosing-vulnerabilities-to-protect.html
    https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/mmpc/2016/11/01/our-commitment-to-our-customers-security/
  • Linux Kernel local privilege escalation vulnerability known as Dirty COW has been patched 9 years after its introduction. As this vulnerability has existed for so long, it will affect practically all Linux-powered devices, from cars, to android phones, routers, etc… Cleaning up this Dirty COW is not going to be easy, with many devices simply no longer supported, or patches take months to be released.
    http://dirtycow.ninja/
  • DNS hosting provider DynDNS has been hit by a huge DDoS attack that shook much of their services offline. Being a DNS provider this had very long reaching effects with many major websites being brought offline because users were unable to perform DNS lookups for websites using DynDNS services.
    Read more on Krebs on Security website
  • Spam has been found to be delivered through a calendar invite file “.ics” that contained a cancellation request with many recipients. Depending on how the calendar invite is managed it could cause the spam email to be forwarded to all the recipients from your email address.
    https://isc.sans.edu/forums/diary/Spam+Delivered+via+ICS+Files/21611/

Breaches

Other

  • The Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Bill 2016 has passed its second reading in the Australian House of Representatives. If passed, this bill will require entities subject to the Privacy Act 1988 to issue a notification in case personal information (that may result in serious harm) gets lost.
  • The Register has published an interesting post on the potential liabilities of being hacked.
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/10/14/been_hacked_what_are_you_liable_for/

September 2016 Internet Security Report


September 2016 successfully delivered an eventful month for cyber security with a handful of threats, breaches and interesting developments in the security of Internet of Things devices. A Denial of Service attack on the website of investigative journalist Brian Kerbs was found to be largely comprised of compromised Internet of Things devices.  Ransomware continued to cause troubles for computer users on all level with a number of new variants and delivery methods being mixed into the threat landscape.

 

Threats

  • Ransomware continues to be a major threat to organisations worldwide with cybercriminals finding new ways to infect users. This month a new variant of ransomware called Mamba was identified which encrypts the whole disk instead of individual files. This is achieved by using a pirated version of the open source disk encryption tool DiskCryptor to encrypt the victim’s hard drive(s). Similar to most other ransomware variants, Mamba uses malicious attachments to deliver its payload and compromise the user’s system.Please ensure that you have adequate backup and restore policies in place and routinely test them to reduce the threat posed by Ransomware.

https://threatpost.com/mamba-ransomware-encrypts-hard-drives-rather-than-files/120730/
https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2016/09/27/mamba-ransomware-strikes-at-your-whole-disk-not-just-your-files/

  • A new Ransomware campaign appears to be targeting educational institutions and government agencies. This Ransomware is called MarsJoke and is distributed via emails with a link that downloads a file called ‘file_6.exe’. These emails bare the branding of popular shipping and postal companies.

https://threatpost.com/marsjoke-ransomware-targets-edu-gov-agencies/120856/

  • Victorian Police have released an advisory that unmarked USB drives have been placed in the letterboxes of Melbourne residents. The USB drives contain malicious software which appears to render victim computers useless.If you receive an unexpected USB drive in the mail, do not plug it into your computer or other devices. On top of malware contained on USB devices, these devices can contain hardware to emulate your computers keyboard and mouse to deliver malware, or in the case of the “USB Killer” permanently disable your USB port or even your computer.

http://www.businessinsider.com.au/melbourne-residents-are-receiving-harmful-usb-drives-in-their-letterboxes-2016-9
https://www.usbkill.com/usb-killer/8-usb-killer.html

  • APT group under the names APT28, Fancy Bear, Sednit, and Pawn Storm are undergoing a phishing campaign targeted at Mac OS X users. The campaign involves emails sent with attachments designed to look like a PDF document, however, the attachment is not a pdf document but an executable that opens a pdf document after running it in order to not arouse suspicion. User interaction is still required to deliver malware, but Mac users may be less cautious after the common fallacy that Mac OS X does not have viruses.

https://threatpost.com/sofacy-apt-targeting-os-x-machines-with-komplex-trojan/120882/

  • Malvertising is a term used for an online add or pop-up that is used as a means to compromise an end user through malicious scripting. These malicious ads are encountered as a result of general internet use and are often able to seamlessly compromise a user without generating visual prompts. Although not a new method for actors to compromise a host it has recently seen a resurgence in certain cases to spread ransomware.One example of this occurring recently was when popular website answers.com was observed to have been distributing malware through embedded advertising where users would be exposed to the RIG Exploit Kit serving up ransomware potentially without answers.com even realising it was happening.Ensuring that your operating system and applications are adequately patched is still the most effective way to mitigate this sort of drive-by download attack.

https://blog.malwarebytes.com/cybercrime/exploits/2016/09/rig-exploit-kit-takes-on-large-malvertising-campaign/
http://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/malvertising-attack-threatens-2/

 

Breaches

  • Point of Sale merchant H&L Australia has reportedly been breached by an unknown threat actor. The treat actor allegedly sold access to a database server and it is believed that at the very least a 14.1Gb database dump has been stolen. Customers of H&L Australia include Australian Leisure and Hospitality Group who operate around 330 pubs and clubs in Australia.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/09/20/exclusive_hackers_claim_pos_tech_firm_breach/

  • UK-based smartphone news and reviews forum MoDaCo has confirmed a breach of 880 000 member usernames, passwords, email and IP addresses. The breach itself is believed to have occurred in January 2016 through the use of a compromised administrator account. Although a lot of information has been leaked, MoDaCo says passwords were stored using the Blowfish cipher.”Security researcher Troy Hunt, who runs ‘Have I Been Pwnd?’, says that 70 percent of the email addresses exposed in this breach were already contained in data batches from previous breaches of other online services.” – (Zeljka Zorz – helpnetsecurity.com, 2016)

Read more on Help Net Security website

 

Other

  • Investigative journalist Brian Krebs has been the target of one of the largest Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks ever recorded, with a whopping 620Gbps. Brian Krebs’s website krebsonsecurity.com had DDoS protection provided by Akamai, who were able to absorb the DDoS attack, but have since dropped Brian Kerbs as a client. The website is now protected by the Google Project Shield initiative, a free service for select journalists to protect from online censorship.

Read more on Krebs on Security website

  • Threat actor ‘The Shadow Brokers’ have acquired stolen NSA hacking tools and are attempting to sell them on the black market. These tools have been confirmed to be NSA tools via an unnamed source within the FBI investigation group currently investigating the incident. It is believed these tools were stolen when these tools were left on a remote staging server 3 years ago, that has since been compromised.So far there has been reportedly little interest in buying these tools, likely due to the NSA currently looking for evidence that the tools are being used, and the fear that the use of these tools could garner too much attention from the NSA.

Read more on Naked Security website

  • There has been an increase in technology development into sandbox-aware malware. There have been observed cases where a document based macro will search a system for the presence of word documents in order to detect if it is running in a sandbox environment or a real user’s system. As a result of this if the script did not detect more than 2-word documents on the host the script would terminate. However, where more than 2-word documents are identified the macro would call back to download its desired malware for execution.These advancements are showing a growing requirement to tailor sandbox environments to be a more realistic snapshot of the kinds of machines that malware target.

https://it.slashdot.org/story/16/09/24/1834249/malware-evades-detection-by-counting-word-documents
https://threatpost.com/malware-evades-detection-with-novel-technique/120787/

August 2016 Internet Security Report


August 2016 was an overall interesting month for cyber security with the annual conferences taking place in America, the Census providing some interesting lessons learnt and discussion; and the Olympics creating an interesting platform for malicious actors. In addition to this, the industry as a whole experienced a diverse range of new threats, breaches and success stories.

Threats

  • Sophos have identified a trend where shortcut files (.LNK) have been used to hide ransomware downloaders. By using a shortcut file malicious actors are able to better mask malware by making the link appear benign. Users are reminded to always be wary of any links or attachments they receive in emails and when in doubt report it or have an extra opinion.

https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2016/08/03/beware-of-ransomware-hiding-in-shortcuts/

  • US-based researcher Elie Bursztein presented his findings of a social experiment conducted at a US university where a number of USBs containing ‘phone home’ capabilities were dropped. Surprisingly 48% of the 297 USBs dropped were plugged into a computer and the phone home capabilities activated. When surveyed the majority of people who activated the USBs claimed to have been trying to return the USB to its rightful owner. This study highlights the level of trust that people have for USB devices and although the USBs used in the study were not actually malicious. It is important to always be wary as to the origin of a USB device, especially if they have been found or are free.

https://threatpost.com/never-trust-a-found-usb-drive-black-hat-demo-shows-why/119653/

  • It is believed that as a result of the increase in attention created by the Olympics has resulted in an increase in banking malware in Brazil. This is a good reminder as to how current events both globally and domestically can be used by malicious actors as a means to increase their chances in successful social engineering attacks.

http://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/olympics-panda-zeus-chomps-into/
http://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/brazil-hit-with-a-second-banking/

  • A new banking Trojan kit has been discovered being sold as a service that goes by the name of Scylex. This is likely to fill the gap in the malware as a service void created by the downfall of previously dominate trojans such as Zeus/SpyEye, Citadel and ZeroAccess. It is still unsure as to how operational or effective this new service is. However, if it is able to deliver on its promises it has the potential to wreck mayhem on financial institutions.

http://www.securitynewspaper.com/2016/08/13/new-scylex-banking-trojan-kit-surfaces-dark-web/
http://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/meet-scylex-the-new-financial/

Breaches

  • Accountancy software providers The Sage Group experienced an incident in which a user used valid internal credentials to access a number of sensitive customer files. Unfortunately, as this is still an ongoing investigation it is uncertain as to the scale of the breach, however, there have been reports of an arrest in regards to this breach resulting in fraud charges. This incident highlights the reality of the risk that insider threats can pose to an organisation.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/08/15/sage_breached_in_apparent_insider_attack/
http://www.welivesecurity.com/2016/08/15/high-profile-data-breach-sage-draws-attention-internal-threats/
http://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/sage-employee-arrested-data-breach/

  • This month 20 US hotels were identified as being infected with Point-of-Sale malware designed to harvest credit card information. These attacks continue to highlight how all devices on a network need to be considered and assessed from a security standpoint.With malicious actors becoming more creative and aware of the weakest points of an organisations information’s systems it is important to be aware of all hosts and their business importance within the scope of a network and to ensure that appropriate security and risk management controls are in place and adhered to.

http://www.zdnet.com/article/20-top-us-hotels-hit-by-fresh-malware-attacks/
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/08/15/pos_malware_stings_20_us_hotels/

Patches and Updates

  • Microsoft Office patch MS16-099 resolved some issues that would allow remote code execution if a user opened a specially crafted document. These continue to be an issue, with common phishing emails claiming to be an invoice or a resume likely to make use of these exploits. Ensure these patches are deployed as soon as possible.

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/security/MS16-099

  • In one of the most interesting security news events in recent history tools from the notorious ‘Equation Group’ which has been previously attributed to being an NSA backed threat actor were put up for auction in an underground forum by an actor known as ‘The Shadow Brokers’. The Shadow Broker initially floated the price of the tools to be 1 million bitcoin (roughly 580 million USD) which naturally drew a lot of suspicion and skepticism as to the legitimacy of the claim.As time continued and the tools up for auction were slowly released for proof of concept. The reality of the situation bean to set in with a number of large companies validating the legitimacy of the tools and exploits and subsequently releasing urgent patches to resolve the issue. Some of the companies who have released updates and comments include:

Cisco – https://tools.cisco.com/security/center/content/CiscoSecurityAdvisory/cisco-sa-20160817-asa-snmp
– FortiNet – http://fortiguard.com/advisory/FG-IR-16-023
– Juniper – https://kb.juniper.net/InfoCenter/index?page=content&id=JSA10605&actp=search

Other

  • Project Sauron also known as Strider is a high-level modular cyber-espionage platform believed to be part of an Advanced Persistent Threat (APT) campaign that has been documented in some detail in the below link. This cyber-espionage platform has been found to be attacking high profile targets in Government, Finance, Military, Telecommunications, and Scientific Research.

https://securelist.com/analysis/publications/75533/faq-the-projectsauron-apt/

  • Brisbane City Council have lost $450,000 AUD in a sophisticated spear-phishing scam where scammers pretending to be a legitimate professional services provider used a series of fake invoices to fraud the Brisbane City Council of just over $450,000 AUD thought 9 payments between the 13ht of July and the 16th of August. Unfortunately the likelihood of recovering the funds are low and law enforcement is currently pursuing the matter. Deloitte have also been engaged to conduct an investigation into the incident.Sadly this type of fraud is a constant threat and is most effective where financial payment controls and processes are less stringent or existing processes are being bypassed by staff. By ensuring outgoing payments are peer reviewed and structural separation of duties it is possible to better mitigate the risk of these scams being successful.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/08/16/brisbane_councillors_lose_500k_to_scammers/
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-08-16/brisbane-city-council-loses-450k-to-scammers/7746812

July 2016 Internet Security Report


Threats

  • Ransomware delivery through compromised websites continues to be a continued threat for end users despite the slowdown in major ransomware and exploit kit activity over previous months. There have been reports of the SoakSoak botnet performing automated reconnaissance and exploitation of websites through a vulnerable wordpress plugin resulting in the delivery of CryptXXX ransomware via the Neutrino Exploit Kit.With ransomware and access to malware as a service becoming easier for criminals looking to make a quick dollar it is important that user are conscious of their web browsing activities and their interactions with web sites and downloaded files.

http://www.itnews.com.au/news/aussie-site-caught-up-in-cryptxxx-ransomware-spreading-campaign-431101
– https://www.invincea.com/2016/07/major-websites-getting-soaksoakd-delivering-cryptxxx-ransomware/

  • Chimera ransomware private keys have been reportedly leaked on pastebin. Since this announcement the Kaspersky Lab have since updated their RakhniDecrypter to now decrypt files affected by Chimera ransomware. It is believed that the keys have been obtained and leaked by the authors of competing ransomware variants as somewhat of a business strategy to control the ransomware market.

– https://blog.malwarebytes.com/cybercrime/2016/07/keys-to-chimera-ransomware-leaked/
– https://threatpost.com/petya-sabotages-rival-ransomware-chimera-leaks-decryption-keys/119543/

  • New Android based malware named ‘SpyNote’ has reportedly surfaced that allows for a malicious actor to steal user messages, contacts and eavesdrop on voice calls. This provides a good reminder to users to keep mobile devices up to date and always double check the permissions you grant applications on installation. Especially when installing from a third party application store.

– http://researchcenter.paloaltonetworks.com/2016/07/unit42-spynote-android-trojan-builder-leaked/

Breaches

  • Although there has been a decrease in major breaches this month there have been some interesting observations being made as a result of mid-year reporting from the wider industry.Some of these key observations were:Continual employee security awareness training and education efforts are essential to ensure that end users are able to identify and understand the threats that face them at both work and home.The increasing need to always consider the security requirements of new technology trends to “eliminate the weaknesses exposed in an evolving computing environment.”The additional risk exposure that mobile devices and the internet of things can introduce into an environment.The importance of securing cloud applications and understanding where your important data is being stored, how it is handled and more importantly how it gets there.

– https://www.paloaltonetworks.com/company/press/2016/cybersecurity-education-efforts-yielding-results
– http://www.pandasecurity.com/mediacenter/src/uploads/2016/05/Pandalabs-2016-T1-EN-LR.pdf-
– http://cdn2.hubspot.net/hubfs/349272/2016-1h-Shadow_Data_Report/ShadowDataReport_1H_2016.pdf

Patches and Updates

  • Google researchers through Project Zero released a report on some critical issues in the cloud based password management system LastPass. The identified issues where confirmed to only affect users who use the LastPass Firefox add on. The issues allowed for a malicious actor to compromise the LastPass account and gain access to the stored passwords through the use of malicious code on a website.The issue has since been resolved by LastPass with updates being pushed to affected versions of the FireFox addon.

-http://thehackernews.com/2016/07/lastpass-password-manager.html
-https://bugs.chromium.org/p/project-zero/issues/detail?id=884
-https://blog.lastpass.com/2016/07/lastpass-security-updates.html/

Other

  • SANS have produced an interesting write up on CEO Fraud in this month’s edition of OUCH!. CEO Fraud also known as Business Email Compromise (BEC) occurs when a malicious actor pretends to be a CEO or senior executive of an organisation as a means to manipulate users through spear phishing emails or phone calls. Examples of these attacks can include requests for urgent money transfers, sensitive and employee information or emails advising the recipient to expect an urgent phone call to discuss confidential matters.Users are advised to always question emails or correspondents that just don’t look or feel right and to always ensure that correct security policy and procedures are followed regardless as to how urgent the situation may appear and when in doubt, ask for a second opinion.

– http://securingthehuman.sans.org/newsletters/ouch/issues/OUCH-201607_en.pdf

 

April 2016 Internet Security Report



April continues on a growing trend of high-profile vulnerabilities with Badlock, a man-in-the-middle vulnerability in Windows and Samba services. The author of Badlock provided a very long patch preparation time so that teams could apply the patch within the shortest possible time after release. There is a growing need for critical patches that need to be applied within the shortest possible period of time after their release, especially in open source components, however, many vendors are lagging behind in providing a quick turnaround for patch releases, if at all. Apple Quicktime for Windows is an example of a company deciding to abandon its product, rather than fixing its discovered vulnerabilities, leaving any users who may still be using the software or still have it installed, vulnerable to serious exploits.
 
PCI DSSv3.2 has now been released with new requirements. The biggest impact of these requirements is on service providers. Some of these new requirements are recommended practices until June 2018 while others must be in place by June 30, 2016. We have released an overview of the changes on our website https://www.shearwater.com.au/new-version-of-pci-dss-released-v3-2/

 

Threats

 

 

Breaches


Patches and Updates

  • Badlock is a man in the middle vulnerability that affected DCERPC traffic that allowed an attacker to impersonate an authenticated user. This vulnerability affected windows computers, and any computer using the SAMBA software. The CVE number for windows is CVE-2016-0128 and the CVE number for SAMBA is CVE-2016-2118. Patches are available for windows and SAMBA. http://rhelblog.redhat.com/2016/04/15/how-badlock-was-discovered-and-fixed/
  • US-CERT advises windows users to uninstall Apple Quicktime. The Trend Micro Zero Day Initiative have discovered two new unpatched vulnerabilities that could be used to remotely compromise Windows computers. As Apple will no longer be providing security updates for Quicktime for Windows it should be uninstalled on all systems as soon as possible.
    http://krebsonsecurity.com/2016/04/us-cert-to-windows-users-dump-apple-quicktime/
  • OpenSSL will release versions 1.0.2h and 1.0.1t that will fix a range of vulnerabilities that are rated as high severity.
    https://www.openssl.org/news/secadv/20160503.txt
  • Oracle has released a Critical Patch advisory for April 2016 which contains 136 security fixes across the various Oracle products including: Oracle Database Server, Oracle E-Business Suite, Oracle Fusion Middleware, Oracle Sun Products, Oracle Java SE, and Oracle MySQL. It is recommended that these updates are applied as soon as possible.
    http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/security-advisory/cpuapr2016v3-2985753.html
  • SAMBA patched multiple vulnerabilities including denial of service and man in the middle vulnerabilities. In addition to applying these patches, they recommend that additional configuration steps be taken to protect from man in the middle vulnerabilities. The changes involve setting mandatory server signing and disable NTLMv1 authentication. Without these settings man in the middle attacks are still possible. For more information please see the following link.
    https://www.samba.org/samba/history/samba-4.4.2.html


Other

January 2016 Internet Security Report


Threats

  • Microsoft DNS patching – Microsoft released a patch for DNS this month. Reported internally, however may allow remote code execution and should be applied to all Microsoft DNS servers. (MS15-127). Soon after release traffic to port 53 increased on the internet suggesting there may be an exploit available.

 If you have external facing Microsoft DNS server these should be patched as soon as possible.

  • Drive-by Ransomware – Cryptowall 4.0 is being used in another drive-by campaign. This campaign is conducted in stages, the first being the installation of Pony which harvests all usable usernames and passwords. Second is the installation of the angler exploit kit which is used to find flaws on the victims system. Once the flaws have been identified, they are used to install Cryptowall 4.0 onto the victim’s computer. This is actively being distributed using emails with word attachments as well as Excel spreadsheets. http://arstechnica.com/security/2015/12/newest-ransomware-pilfers-passwords-before-encrypting-gigabytes-of-data/

Educate users regarding opening emails with attachments, especially those that ask for content to be enabled.

Remind users regarding the reporting process in your organisation should they accidentally open and activate such email. The first action of the user should be to pull the network cable on their computer.

Ensure that there are viable backups of critical files in the organisation.

  • Since late November 2015, malicious spam (malspam) distributing TelsaCrypt ransomware has surged in a recent attack offensive [1]. Criminal groups are sending out massive amounts of emails containing attachments with zipped .js files. These zipped .js files–called Nemucod by ESET and some other security vendors [2]–download and install the TeslaCrypt ransomware. https://isc.sans.edu/diary/TeslaCrypt+ransomware+sent+using+malicious+spam/20507

Educate users regarding opening emails with attachments, especially those that ask for content to be enabled.

Remind users regarding the reporting process in your organisation should they accidentally open and activate such email. The first action of the user should be to pull the network cable on their computer.

Ensure that there are viable backups of critical files in the organisation

Whilst the risk currently in AU is considered low, it may need a rethink of how machines with malware are remediated. To ensure this threat, if present, is removed the volume boot records and master boot record should be rebuilt.

  • The war in Syria, which began several years ago, has recently become one of the most widely reported events in the media. Along with the growing interest of the international community in Middle East events, “Nigerian” scammers have also jumped on the bandwagon. Over the last few months, we have recorded an increase in the number of fraudulent emails utilizing the Syrian theme.” https://securelist.com/blog/spam-test/72867/arabian-tales-by-nigerians/

As these are standard phishing activities users should be educated regarding following links and opening attachments on emails.

Educate users regarding opening emails with attachments, especially those that ask for content to be enabled.

 

Breaches

  • Invest Bank in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates – A hacker has leaked customer data after the bank declined to pay approximately US $3 Million in Bitcoin as a ransom. The hacker has been identified as Hacker Buba. It is believed that Hacker Buba has a number of other files, other than those released, on customer data including entire SQL databases. Hacker Buba claimed to also have data from the following banks “UAE, Qater, ksa and etc”.

 

  • OPM breach update – A handful of hackers that allegedly broke into OPM’s database and stole data related to approximately 22 million current and former federal employees have been arrested by the Chinese government. Information about the suspects and their potential ties to the Chinese government have not been disclosed.

 

 

  • JD Wetherspoon – A breach consisting of around 656000 customers’ data has been made public by the retail company JD Wetherspoon. Data obtained includes names, dates of birth, email addresses, phone numbers, and a ‘limited’ number of credit card details belonging to around 100 customers. It appears that the breach vector was their website, which has since had a ‘complete overhaul. http://www.zdnet.com/article/jd-wetherspoon-loses-data-of-over-650000-customers-in-cyberattack/

 

 

 

Patches and Updates*

 

 

  • It appears that all major AV vendors have a flaw with the way they allocate memory for read, write and execute permission. They allocate these RWX permissions in a predictable way which could allow an attacker to inject malicious code. McAfee, Kaspersky and AVG have released patches for the flaw, others will follow. “Given the possible widespread nature of the problem, enSilo has created a free checking utility called AVulnerabilityChecker and stuck it on Github for anyone to use.” http://www.theregister.co.uk/2015/12/10/kaspersky_mcafee_avg_vulnerable/

 

 

Unauthorised admin access – ScreenOS 6.3.0r17 through 6.3.0r20.

VPN Traffic can be decrypted – ScreenOS 6.2.0r15 through 6.2.0r18 and 6.3.0r12 through 6.3.0r20.

 

  • The admin issue CVE-2015-7755 relates to a hardcoded backdoor password in the system. It allows access via SSH or Telnet, regardless of the userid used. The second issue CVE-2015-7756 relates to IPSEC VPNs and may allow someone who intercepts VPN traffic to decode the traffic.
    Please review the KB and determine whether you have systems that may be susceptible. Scans for accessible juniper devices is ongoing.

\* Please note these are not all patches released during December. Our list outlines those patches or notifications that may have been missed, or have changed status since released or after additional information has been made available.

 

Other

  • DNS – Between November 30 and December 1, distributed denial-of-service attacks were carried out against the internet’s root name servers, a set of 13 server networks that are at the root of the domain-name system, or DNS, sometimes called the internet’s address book. The root server zones contain information that allows browsers to find top-level domains such as .com, .org, .net, and the country-specific domains attached to them. According to an incident report by root-servers.org, “most, but not all” DNS root name servers were experiencing five million queries per second, which was enough junk traffic to prevent some normal queries. http://www.zdnet.com/article/mystery-attackers-bombard-servers-at-the-internets-core/

 

  • Google will no longer trust one of Symantec’s root certificates, PCA3-G1, as a result of Symantec’s advisory that “this particular root certificate is based on older, lower-strength security that is no longer recommended, hasn’t been used to generate new certificates in several years, and will now be repurposed to provide transition support for some of our enterprise customers’ legacy, non-public applications.” http://www.scmagazine.com/google-will-remove-trust-of-symantecs-pca3-g1-certificate/article/459688/