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Tag: CYBERCRIME

Convicted Hacker Says He Committed Credit Card Heist for U.S. Government

The hacker who orchestrated the biggest computer crime operation in U.S. history is alleging that the American government authorized him to do so. Last year, 29-year-old Albert Gonzalez pleaded guilty to hacking into computer systems at TJX, Office Max, Dave & Busters, Heartland Payment Systems and other companies, in order to steal some 130 million credit card numbers. He received a...

Manning Used Data-Mining Software to Obtain Documents, Army Claims

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, the man suspected of supplying WikiLeaks with thousands of confidential military documents, used unauthorized data-mining software to obtain the information, according to the Army. The Army alleges that Manning installed the software on computers connected to the Secret Internet Protocol Router Network (SIPRN), which is believed to be the source of the 250,000...

Massive Data Breach Leaks Customer Names, Email Addresses

A cyber-attack on an online marketing firm has impacted a wide array of companies and customers in what could be the largest data breach in U.S. history. The online marketer, Epsilon, sends out more than 40 billion email ads and offers each year, typically to users who register with a company's website, or give their email addresses while shopping online. On Friday, Epsilon announced that a...

E.U. Facing Cyberattack as Summit Approaches

The E.U. is facing a cyber-attack of unprecedented proportions, a spokesman for the European Commission said yesterday. The attack began earlier this week, as the Commission prepared for a summit during which a military response in Libya, among other topics, is expected to be discussed. This ain't exactly the E.U.'s first time at the cyber-attack rodeo; E.U. computers are attacked frequently....

'GhostExodus' Hacker Sentenced to Nine Years in Federal Prison

In June 2009, federal authorities arrested William McGraw (alias "GhostExodus") on charges of hacking into 14 computers at W.B. Carrell Memorial Clinic in Dallas, where he worked as a security guard. According to prosecutors, McGraw gained access to the network as part of his plot to attack Anonymous on or before the Fourth of July -- which he called "Devil's Day." His master plan, however,...

Researchers Develop Technique to Identify Anonymous E-Mail Authors

IP addresses may help identify the source of anonymous and malicious e-mails, but they can only tell authorities where the message originated, without providing many details on the individual who authored them. Using some pretty innovative analytics, researchers at Concordia University have just come up with a new technique that could help investigators determine the precise identity of these...

Elite, All-Voluntary Cyber Defense League Keeps Estonia's 'Net Secure

The small post-Soviet nation of Estonia has created a bit of a paradigm for cyber-security: an elite, all-voluntary force of private and public sector tech pros, from programmers to administrators to top army officials. It's kind of like a cyber-Justice League. Before this starts to sound like a tale of vigilante justice, some history: in 2007, after Estonia made a decision to move a Russian...

IE Bug Gives Hackers Control Over Your PC, Microsoft Offers Band-Aid

Microsoft has discovered a new vulnerability in its Internet Explorer browser that could allow hackers to take control over unprotected PCs. The new bug, which was discovered in all versions of the browser, exposes Explorer's memory management system. If exploited, the vulnerability could allow hackers and cybercriminals to inject their own malicious code into a given computer and seize control of...

FBI Hunts Russian Man Behind One-Third of the World's Spam

Federal investigators are currently pursuing a 23-year-old Russian man accused of orchestrating the so-called 'Mega-D' botnet that, at one point, had the capacity to send 10 billion spam e-mails per day. The network of 500,000 infected computers was taken down late last year, but one researcher quoted by the FBI said that Mega-D, at the height of its powers, "was likely the largest botnet in the...

INTERPOL Secretary General's Identity Swiped via Facebook

As the head of the world's most important cross-border police force, INTERPOL security general Ronald K. Noble clearly knows a thing or two about security -- except, apparently, when it comes to Facebook. At the inaugural INTERPOL Information Security Conference held in Hong Kong last week, Noble revealed that his personal identity was stolen through Facebook. According to the Daily Mail,...

Searching for 'Free' Content Is Risky, Often Tied to Malware

According to a new study from McAfee, searching for "free" things online can significantly increase your chances of landing on a site with malicious software. In the report (PDF), McAfee addresses the "true cost of free entertainment," suggesting that searches for free music or ringtones can increase the chances of finding a malicious site by 300-percent, while searching for the lyrics of a...

Cybercrime Victims Beset With Guilt, Blame Themselves

Victims of cybercrimes are often quite angry about being hacked and snookered. That's not surprising. What might come as a bit of a shock is that most aggrieved blame themselves. According to a survey from Symantec, 54-percent of those who had fallen prey to Internet scams and attacks said they should have been "more careful," while 12-percent said the security breach was entirely their own fault....

Online Scammers Take Lawyer for $240,000

When it comes to being up to date with the latest trends and techniques in law-evasion, lawyers are, by definition, experts. Even they, however, can fall prey to well-disguised cybercrimes, as one New Hampshire barrister has just proven. The lawyer, who remains anonymous, reportedly lost some $240,000 after falling for an online scam that used fake companies and counterfeit checks to hire...

Man Charged With Extortion Remotely Hacked Into Computers for Homemade Porn

Hackers are, by definition, a strange breed. But few are quite as disturbing as 31-year-old Luis Mijangos, who has been charged with extorting sexually explicit images and videos from a women he targeted with malware. According to federal prosecutors, Mijangos scoured peer-to-peer networks for his targets, to whom he sent malicious software disguised as MP3s. Once opened, the file would infect his...

Smartphone Cybercrooks Poking Mobile Apps for Weaknesses

Apple's criticized policy of banning certain content from its App Store may not be so debatable or controversial anymore. Like sharks executing exploratory test bites on possible prey, scammers and cybercriminals progressively seek mobile weaknesses by performing attacks on smartphones and wireless gadgets. According to the Wall Street Journal, probes of Air Force mobile devices exponentially...