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APTs/cyberespionage

Rep. Thompson asks O’Brien to revive cyber coordinator position

After President Trump tapped Robert O’Brien to replace John Bolton as national security adviser, the third in less than three years, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson, D-Miss., called on O’Brien to resurrect the cyber coordinator position last held in May 2018 by Rob Joyce and eliminated by Bolton soon thereafter. “Mr. O’Brien, President Trump’s fourth National…

Justice Dept. sues Snowden over book release

The U.S. Justice Department filed suit against former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden for not running his memoir, “Permanent Record,” through the proper government review prior to its publication. “If only the Justice Department was as concerned with the systematic legal violations carried out by the U.S. government’s mass surveillance programs as they…

U.S. sanctions North Korea hacking groups, says attacks funded missile program

The U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned North Korea Friday for ransomware attacks on the Swift interbank messaging system and other critical infrastructure targets that generated funding for the nation-state’s weapons and missile programs. The Treasury Department targeted three state-sponsored hacking groups – the Lazarus Group, whose WannaCry attacks wreaked havoc around the…

stingray2

Israel reportedly behind spying devices found near White House, other sensitive areas

Israel likely planted StingRays found near the White House and other key locations in Washington to spy on President Trump and his advisers, the U.S. government reportedly determined, though the Trump administration took no apparent action to chastise its ally. “It was pretty clear that the Israelis were responsible,” a Politico report cited a former…

Backdoor

StealthFalcon backdoor using Windows BITS to hide action

The cyberespionage group Stealth Falcon is using a previously unreported binary backdoor along with Windows BITS to communicate with its command and controls server. The revelation was made by ESET researchers who came across the backdoor, which it named Win32/StealthFalcon, which the security firm believes has many similarities with another PowerShell script with backdoor capabilities…

Report: Dutch agency recruited Iranian mole to help U.S. and Israel plant Stuxnet virus

The 2007 Stuxnet virus attack perpetrated against Iran’s then-budding nuclear program was made possible after U.S. and Israeli intelligence coordinated with Dutch intelligence agency AIVD to recruit an Iranian engineer as a mole who could infect Iran’s enrichment plant near Natanz, Yahoo News reported this week. The engineer initially provided data that helped Stuxnet’s authors…

Reports say China devised iPhone malware campaign to track Muslims; Android and Windows devices also targeted

A recently exposed malware campaign that used watering-hole attacks to target iPhone users for more than two years was reportedly part of an effort to track Uyghur Muslims based in China’s Xinjiang state. The campaign was actually broader than originally thought, and attempted to infect Android and Microsoft Windows devices as well, reports are also…

Apple issues seven updates, fixes more than 40 vulnerabilities in iOS 8, OS 10.9.5

Watering-hole attack campaign designed to infect iOS users via exploit chains

Researchers at Google’s Project Zero yesterday lifted the curtain on a long-running mobile malware operation that for years attempted to infect iOS device users with a malware implant, using exploits delivered via a small number of compromised websites. In an online blog post report, Google researcher Ian Beer did not reveal the specific websites that…

James Comey

IG: Comey violated FBI policy by leaking memos of Trump meetings

The Justice Department Inspector General (IG) had harsh words for former FBI Director James Comey, saying that by maintaining a set of contemporaneous memos detailing meetings with President Trump in early 2017 and leaking them, he violated FBI policy, though the IG report released Thursday found “no evidence that Comey or his attorneys released any…

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