A Billion in the Cloud

Recently, sharp-eyed users congratulated me with a ‘billion’ items in Kaspersky Security Network. Thank you! Although, I need to explain what that ‘billion’ is.
 

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Can Blockchain Technology Secure Digital Voting Systems?

Can Blockchain Technology Secure Digital Voting Systems?

Over the past few weeks, teams from 19 universities in the US and UK competed in Kaspersky Lab’s Cybersecurity Case Study Competition, hosted by The Economist’s Which MBA? site. The teams were challenged with a complex task:

Can technology play a greater positive role in democracy and the way people make important decisions about the future of their countries? With digital voting, a new wave of challenges rolls in: from guaranteeing the anonymity of voters to the prevention of fraud, all the while ensuring the security of the voting system itself. One small vulnerability or oversight could very well change the course of a...

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How Internet ads work, part 3: tracking users

How Internet ads work, part 3: tracking users

Public awareness of — and wariness about — Web privacy continues to grow. That should come as no surprise: These days, pervasive cybertracking affects everyone. In this article, the last in our series about digital marketing (for some background, see part 1 and part 2), we briefly explain some of the tools marketers use to track pretty much all of your movements online.

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You’ve got cookies

Many of you may have heard of Web cookies: small text files that the websites you visit store on your computer. Using web cookies, a website can track your online activity, know how long have you spent on the site, keep your logged-in session open,...

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A Billion in the Cloud.

A Billion in the Cloud.

Recently, sharp-eyed users congratulated me with a ‘billion’ items in Kaspersky Security Network. Thank you! Although, I need to explain what that ‘billion’ is.

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First of all, don’t worry. This is not a billion something or other you don’t want on your computer; no, it’s something different, and it’s a little complicated. So, let me start with some basic definitions.

An ‘ideal cybersecurity product’ is one that:

– Detects 100% of cyberattacks (and makes no mistakes);
– Consumes 0% of system resources;
– Does not bother the user with technical questions.

Of course, this sort of protection has not been invented yet. Therefore, the quality of...

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What is Ransomware, How it Works and What You Can Do to Stay Protected
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oleg: Nice one. Simple about complicated.
Viruses: Back to basics

Viruses: Back to basics

Do you remember where the term “virus” came from? Yes, I’m talking about biological viruses, after which IT security specialists named the computer programs that insert their own code into other objects to reproduce and propagate themselves.

It is very likely that soon this information technology term will regain its original meaning — researchers from Microsoft and the University of Washington have marked a new milestone in data storage by writing approximately 200MB of data in the form of a synthetic DNA.

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You may ask: What’s the connection with biological viruses? The analogy is pretty direct — viruses insert their genetic code into the DNA of...

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A Brief History of DDoS Attacks.

A Brief History of DDoS Attacks.

And so it’s come to pass: the abbreviation ‘DDoS‘ has entered the lexicon to such an extent that it often doesn’t get written out in full these days in the general interest newspapers. Well, some actually may still not know what it stands for, but everyone and their dog does know that a DDoS is very bad thing for a certain large target, with something very important suddenly not working, with employees twiddling their thumbs as the network’s down, and with their tech-support’s telephones requiring an ice bath as they’re so hot from ringing – and disgruntled clients swearing down them all the time. What’s more, everyone and their cat also...

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Zombie computers and how to avoid them

Zombie computers and how to avoid them

You’ve probably heard the word botnet more than once recently, and that’s hardly surprising. Any connected device can be zombified — turned into a part of a botnet. These include PCs, smartphones, tablets, routers, Wi-Fi refrigerators, smart toys, and a lot of other gadgets.

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In this post we explain what a botnet is, the bad things a botnet can do, and how to protect your gadgets from becoming a part of a botnet.

Botnets: What are they?

A botnet is a group of Internet-connected devices that have been infected with special malware. The kind of malware that creates bots, or zombies, works covertly, acquiring administrative rights and giving...

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Tip of the week: Get rid of ad banners

Tip of the week: Get rid of ad banners

The Internet is up to its ears in ads. They can overwhelm pages and make it hard to focus on the content. We recently explained how Internetads work, and today we are going to explain how to say goodbye to those ads with the help of Kaspersky Internet Security 2017.

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Turn Anti-banner on

Kaspersky Internet Security 2017 includes a browser extension called Kaspersky Protection, which you can read more about here. Among other things, this extension has a component we call Anti-Banner. To turn it on, click the Kaspersky Protection button on your browser toolbar, and then in the Anti-banner drop-down menu choose Enable.

The other way to turn on...

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The World’s Most Beautiful Countries – a Fresh Approach
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Mamba ransomware allows riders free entry to San Francisco Muni

Mamba ransomware allows riders free entry to San Francisco Muni

This past weekend, November 26 and 27, people traveling on the San Francisco Municipal Railway were surprised to find out that they didn’t have to pay for their rides. Everyone rode free both days. A socialist dream come true? Nope. The SF Municipal Railway, aka the Muni, lost the ability to sell tickets because it was attacked by ransomware.

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Some media outlets claim that the problem manifested a few days earlier, just before Thanksgiving Day, when station ticket machines and schedule monitors started displaying a message saying “You Hacked” — as usual, ransomware announced itself with a lot of grammatical mistakes....

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Free your digital life

Free your digital life

According to our recent survey, more than 70% of active Internet users have considered quitting their social networks, primarily, they say, because they waste too much time on them. I think it’s something more: that people feel they have become mere commodities to the digital corporations that not only feed them content, but also more and more often tell them what to do, what to buy, what to watch and listen to — and the list goes on.

Do we really own our digital lives? Many of you already know the bitter truth: We don’t.

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The individual user of a digital device can do a bit to control their digital shadow — the data and metadata that is generated...

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The First ‘Cybersecurity World Championship’.

The First ‘Cybersecurity World Championship’.

I’ve a real soft spot for the disruptive thinking. I also like surprising astounding folks. And I like astounding folks in proper, worthy ways. I like it when what we do makes jaws drop; when folks don’t believe – but try anyway, then they get to like it, and then they love it.

Ok, all a bit abstract so far. Let me be a bit more concrete…

Our latest jaw-dropper is… a desktop simulator game for cybersecurity! Never heard of that before? You wouldn’t – it’s never been done before!

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It goes by the name of KIPS – which stands for Kaspersky Interactive Protection Simulation. It’s a business teamwork cybersecurity strategy...

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The Ransomware Plague of 2016

The Ransomware Plague of 2016

Cryptography and ransom have roots deep in human history. However, only in the past few decades has the world seen what can happen when someone combines them. It started in 1989, when Dr. Joseph L. Popp kicked off the pandemic we know today as ransomware.

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Origins

Known as the grandfather of computer-based extortion schemes, Popp distributed his malicious payload at the World Health Organization’s AIDS conference. The disks, labeled “AIDS Information — Introductory Diskettes,” actually came with a warning, printed separately, that the software on them would harm computers.

But who reads documentation, anyway? Some of the 20,000 or so diskettes that...

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A Tricky Choice out of Few Alternatives.

A Tricky Choice out of Few Alternatives.

Ok. Let’s solve – not the trickiest – but still not the most trivial of tasks.

This year for Christmas I’d like a new laptop – a better, tougher one. I’ve only had the one I’ve got now a little over a year, but with my business schedule and the computer’s constant use and abuse, it’s on its last legs already. It looks tatty, and the keyboard feels like it’s going to fall apart. So, yes: I need an upgrade…

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But what device should I get? Crikey. Where to start? Ah yes – at the beginning: with my requirements…

My user requirements aren’t too convoluted, but then again – they’re not mere email/ messenger/ Instagram/...

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What Kaspersky Password Manager is and how to use it

What Kaspersky Password Manager is and how to use it

Do you have any idea of how many online services you actually use or sites and forums that you visit? If you were to track and count, the sheer number would probably amaze you. We’d conservatively estimate that it is at least two dozen, but is probably much higher.

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If you want to use all these resources safely, you have to invent and remember unique passwords for each one. Security rules are strict so cyber-savvy people don’t reuse their passwords, choose only reliable combinations and change them regularly. It’s hard to remember all passwords so many people write them down on paper or in a text file. This is not safe — the...

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Who owns our data? Evgeny Chereshnev talks at TedX Kazan

Who owns our data? Evgeny Chereshnev talks at TedX Kazan

Our bionic man, Evgeny Chereshnev, had a chance to speak at a TedX event in Kazan. During his 17-minute talk, he discussed what he has learned from having a biochip in his hand.

As any regular reader of this blog knows, he is quite vocal about the use cases of the biochip and the synergy between man and machine. However, one issue he mentioned in the talk is quite the conversation starter: who owns our digital data and memories?


In the video below, Chereshnev discusses how data has really become part of our DNA and why he believes we need to start looking more into what the future holds for our data.

So, hang on tight and watch...

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NYC landmarks hacked, customer data leaked

NYC landmarks hacked, customer data leaked

New York City is one of those places that people from around the globe make a pilgrimage to see. During the holiday season, Radio City Music Hall and the tree at Rockefeller Center are traditions that many families do annually. Similarly, Madison Square Garden is a beacon for fans of sports and concerts.

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Unfortunately, the popularity of some of these venues caught the eyes of some grinching hackers. Earlier this week, the owners of Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall and the Beacon Theater announced that they were the victims of a data breach.

The incident was active between November of 2015 and October of this year. Hackers are said to...

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Ransoc: a convincing threat

Ransoc: a convincing threat

Imagine that your computer suddenly shows you a disturbing message: “It’s FBI. Illegal content has been detected on your device. You’ll be arrested for 20 years and fined for $200,000 unless you pay $100 in bitcoins.”

“Ha! — you’ll say. — Not so fast, ransomware! You aren’t getting a penny — instead I’ll use a special tool to remove you from my PC.”

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Lockers like this were commonly spread from 2012-2014, but now they have primarily moved to smartphones, where they are harder to deal with, while on PCs cryptoransomware inherited their place.

Nonetheless, lockers did not leave computers completely – they have evolved to use the
most...

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The World’s Most Beautiful Countries – a Fresh Approach.

The World’s Most Beautiful Countries – a Fresh Approach.

And now for something completely different and non-industrial. In fact just the opposite – something about both natural and man-made beauty. Why? Here’s why…

Not long ago, somewhere (I can’t recall where) I came across the phrase ‘the most beautiful country in the world’. I didn’t think much of it at the time, but the old unconscious appears to have logged it for a future revisit. Oh that subconscious.

A few weeks later, sure enough, I was compelled to revisit it, and had a look on the Internet about this, and of course I found various lists of things like ‘The Top-10/20 Most Beautiful Countries in the World’....

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Can you spot fraudsters online?

Can you spot fraudsters online?

Black Friday and Cyber Monday, followed by the Christmas sales are high season for cybercriminals: as you’re trying to get that shiny new TV or pair of jeans for the price of a pair of socks, bad guys are trying just as zealously to steal your money. Take our quiz to check if you can avoid the traps set by cybercriminals.

Note: There is a widget embedded within this post, please visit the site to participate in this post's widget.

It was simple, wasn’t it? If you want to know more about phishing and other types of holiday fraud, you can also read our post. Here’s another interesting post, this time we look at how criminals used technology and phishing...

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How machine learning works, simplified

How machine learning works, simplified

Lately, tech companies have gone absolutely crazy for machine learning. They say it solves the problems only people could crack before. Some even go as far as calling it “artificial intelligence.” Machine learning is of special interest in IT security, where the threat landscape is rapidly shifting and we need to come up with adequate solutions.
Some go as far as calling machine learning ‘artificial intelligence’ just for the sake of it.

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Technology comes down to speed and consistency, not tricks. And machine learning is based on technology, making it easy to explain in human terms. So, let’s get down to it: We will be solving a real...

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Pleasant News from China.

Pleasant News from China.

Privyet all!

I’m lying low in MOW at the mo, but that doesn’t mean life comes to a standstill – far from it!

While I sit here in my office looking out the window at the falling snow, over in China, in the city of Wuzhen, the annual World Internet Conference is taking place (which I was at last year). And this year the organizers have decided to give awards to the best (in their opinion) cyber-projects. And guess who featured among the winners?!

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Here’s congratulating all project members! Our solution for protecting industrial installations and critical infrastructure – KICS – won the award for ‘World Leading Internet Scientific and Technological...

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Quiz: Cybersecurity trivia

Quiz: Cybersecurity trivia

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Rock Steel ‘n’ Roll.

Rock Steel ‘n’ Roll.

Ok, you’ve seen how the steel gets transformed from red hot slabs into pastry-thin sheets at the Novolipetsk Steel Plant already. Next up: the cold-rolling and polymer coatings workshop…

Rolls from the hot workshop are brought here and unwound onto conveyor belts and then shuffled about here and there and subjected to various technological processes to increase the steel’s quality, among other things.

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At the end of the processing the sheets are wound round these here reels:

Next – zinc plating. If you look closely, you can see in the next pic a sheet of steel standing vertically. Actually, it’s not standing, it’s shooting upwards – after taking a...

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Trapped in social networks

Trapped in social networks

A recent survey of 4,831 active social network users, conducted by Kaspersky Lab in 12 countries, reveals that an overwhelming majority (78%) of respondents considered quitting their social networks — but chose to stay. They wanted to leave for a variety of reasons: 39% of users complained they were wasting too much time, the top response. The top reason not to quit was a desire to stay in touch with relatives and friends (62% of respondents).

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In this post we present key survey results and their interpretations.

Key Findings
  • 78% of active social networks users who responded to our survey said that they have been thinking of quitting social networks
  • Key reasons...
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