Government News, Articles and Updates

US-CERT issues malware analysis on KEYMARBLE RAT, attributes threat to North Korea

Through its US-CERT division, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security yesterday issued a new analysis report on a remote access trojan called KEYMARBLE that the agency says has been attributed to Hidden Cobra, a suspected North Korean APT actor.

Analysis of email address in Mueller indictments exposes 9M weaponized email accounts

GroupSense researchers investigating an email address affiliated with Russia's Internet Research Agency for evidence of a botnet meant to exert influence on public opinions.

Following IG report, FCC admits net neutrality comment process was never subjected to DDoS attack

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai admitted in a statement on Monday that his agency never actually suffered a DDoS attack when its Electronic Comment Filing System went down on May 7-8, 2017, while citizens were attempting to submit opinions about the proposed repeal of net neutrality rules.

Pence said cyberattack shut down Kansas county election system, except it didn't

Vice President Mike Pence Tuesday told the audience of a Manhattan cybersecurity conference that a malware attack forced a Kansas County to shut down its election systems.

Worst of both words: 'Gorgon' hackers practice both general cybercrime and targeted government attacks

A hacking group apparently based in Pakistan has been straddling the fence between cybercriminal activity and nation-state espionage, leveraging the same malicious infrastructure to both launch email spam campaigns and target government agencies in U.S., UK, Russia and Spain.

Russian spearphishing campaign targeted nearly 800 PCs at more than 400 companies

A spearphishing campaign targeted more than 400 industrial companies by sending highly personalized emails disguised as procurement and accounting documents.

Alaska city, borough under attack by CryptoLocker

The Alaskan borough of Matanuska-Susitna (Mat-Su) and City of Valdez were respectively hit with ransomware attacks which knocked both networks offline.

Kentucky city cites the risk of terrorism for not releasing surveillance details

When a local resident filed an Open Records Act request after noticing surveillance cameras had been installed in a public park without prior notice, the police department denied his request.

New DarkHydrus threat group targets Middle Eastern government agency

Researchers dubbed the custom PowerShell based payload, RogueRobin, and said it's possible the group pieced together the tool using code from legitimate open source tools.

Trump election security meeting results in no new measures

President Trump held a meeting with top advisors on Friday to discuss security for the upcoming 2018 midterm elections, but the only reported result was a statement reiterating the administration's stance that it will not tolerate outside interference.

Sen. McCaskill reportedly identified as Russian hacking target as mid-term elections approach

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., an incumbent facing a tight race in the 2018 U.S. mid-term elections, has affirmed that Russian hackers are attempting to interfere with her reelection campaign, following an independent forensic analysis identifying her as a target.

Cyberattacks soared in Finland prior to Trump-Putin summit; IoT devices a major target

Cyberattacks against Finland skyrocketed in the days leading up to the July 16 Helsinki summit between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin -- the majority of which were attempts to brute force IoT devices.

Ransomware-based breach of Alaskan medical billing vendor impacts Fairbanks municipality

A data breach and corresponding ransomware attack at an Alaskan medical billing company that compromised the health information of roughly 44,600 people counteed a Fairbanks-based government municipality among its victims.

New concerns over user data sharing leads Facebook to suspend analytics firm Crimson Hexagon

Crimson Hexagon, a company that generates consumer insights from public social media posts, has been suspended from Facebook while the social media giant evaluates whether the data collection firm violated Facebook policies.

Game of Thrones hacker and dam hacker make FBI most wanted cybercriminals list

The list is also shared with credit card scammers, digital bank robbers, and several state-backed hackers including a man wanted for stealing rocket software.

Proposed legislation would empower DHS to modernize Continuous Diagnostics Mitigation cyber program

U.S. Congressman John Ratcliffe, R-Tex., yesterday introduced a bill that, if passed, would officially codify the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Continuous Diagnostics Mitigation (CDM) cybersecurity program, and allow the agency to modernize it as needed.

Federal Judge scolds FBI agent for improper stingray use

A federal judge in San Francisco scolded an FBI agent for the improper use of a stingray as well as an improper cellphone search.

Putin says Russia targeted by nearly 25M cyberattacks during World Cup

Putin did not however, indicate who may have been behind the attacks nor gave any information on the nature or possible origins of the attacks.

Ukraine accuses Russia of VPNFilter attack targeting chlorine distillation station

Ukraine is claiming to have stopped a VPNFilter attack which targeted a chlorine distillation station last week.

Russian gun rights advocate charged as spy

A Russian national and gun activist today was indicted for acting as a Russian agent to develop relationships with U.S. persons and infiltrate organizations that influence American politics to benefit the Russian Federation, according to a criminal complaint unsealed Monday in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Report: Russia's national vulnerability database is incomplete, and a cover for software snooping

The government organization running Russia's national vulnerability database (NVD) has only reported 10% percent of the total bugs published by America's own NVD since 2014, omitting many critical issues while focusing heavily on flaws relevant to Russian state information systems, according to research.

Report: Critical bug bounty disclosures are rising, as are payouts

The average bug bounty reward for finding critical vulnerabilities increased year-over-year by six percent from $1,923 to $2,041, according to statistics compiled from HackerOne's bug disclosure platform between May 2017 and April 2018.

Chinese cyberespionage group TEMP.Periscope targets Cambodian election

A Chinese cyberespionage group is targeting Cambodian entities ahead of the country's July 2018 elections.

Reports: Israel military says Hamas spied on troops using fake World Cup, dating apps

Israeli soldiers have recently been enticed into downloading malicious Android World Cup and dating apps that secretly allowed Hamas militants to spy on their fellow troops, according to various reports citing Israeli military intelligence

NHS patients' data shared despite their objections, due to data processing error

Data that National Health Service patients in the UK specifically requested be kept private was inadvertently used in a clinical audit and research project due to a nearly three-year long data processing error, a UK government official reported yesterday.

Facebook says 61 apps got extensions for collecting user data following 2015 policy change

After Facebook officially changed its policies in May 2015 to restrict the information that app developers could collect on users and their friends, the social media company granted a special extension to 61 developers, allowing them to continue the practice for several additional months.