Our fan club is a teenager already!
bhnRzclXS1KAqhrFVVLw5L5rHasxVq8r.jpg?w=270&s=5cc0ab8809b55f16d8a938b433c82de1Our fan club is a teenager already!Who are the fans of Kaspersky, and why is the fan club beneficial to the company as well as to the members of the fan club itself?http://www.kaspersky.com  

 

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samH: Nice Pic
An ode to Namibian roads.

An ode to Namibian roads.

Once again I can’t help but sing the praises of the ‘German’ roads in Namibia! They’re superb! Although the only local premium-quality highway is still not that long – only 50+ kilometers. But the quality of the other paved two-lane roads here is mostly ideal. And the views along the road are something to behold! The biggest problem for drivers here is how to avoid being distracted by the scenery :)

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On almost all the paved roads the speed limit is a liberal 120. // it’s not like Australia, where the speed limit on a six-lane highway as straight as an arrow is 100, with their cynical signs saying there’s “no tolerance for speeding”.

There are regular...

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Scammers try to cash in on Burning Man

Scammers try to cash in on Burning Man

Every year, in late August or early September, tens of thousands of people gather in the Black Rock Desert in Nevada for the Burning Man arts event. For eight days, the festival becomes an epicenter for creatives from around the world. The monumental installations, spellbinding performances, and inimitable atmosphere of the festival attract huge numbers of visitors.

Burning Man tickets don’t grow on trees

Getting into Burning Man is not easy. Tickets are limited, and in recent years demand has far outstripped supply. So that they don’t get snapped up all at once, the organizers put them up for sale in stages.

And even then it’s not simply a case of...

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Ghosts of Lehrer, Buchhalter, Minenverwalter and other adventures in ghostly Kolmanskop.

Ghosts of Lehrer, Buchhalter, Minenverwalter and other adventures in ghostly Kolmanskop.

The next destination on our Namibian tour and the main reason for going to Lüderitz is the ghost town of Kolmanskop.

The settlement sprang up around the diamond fields, went through a period of rapid growth, then the diamonds dried up and the town was abandoned. Now this once-thriving town is almost buried in the desert sand and is gradually eroding, leaving behind some apocalyptic images.

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Welcome to Kolmanskop! Open from 8 A.M. to 1 P.M., entrance fee, drones forbidden.

The town is located in an area almost devoid of life. But rich diamond-bearing deposits are a good enough reason to...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 130

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 130

We open the 130th edition of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast looking at a favorite topic of discussion: Facebook. It’s not the typical security-related incident you might expect; instead, we start with the company’s statements seeking regulation from governments.

Yes, friends, you read that right. Mark Zuckerberg is asking for governments to implement regulations on fake news, disinformation, or just bending of the truth.

After Facebook, we head to the dark web, where it appears that attackers are reusing Black Energy‘s code. From there, we jump to a cyberattack on Boston’s Children’s Hospital that is disrupting patient flow. Then, we...

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Adventures in game ratings

Adventures in game ratings

It’s perfectly normal for kids to play games, including of the computer and mobile varieties, but not all games (or gamers) are the same. It’s not for nothing that game boxes and online descriptions contain age restriction info. So, should you panic if, say, your 10-year-old is hooked on the T-rated Fortnite? Let’s investigate who determines these classifications, the reasons behind them, and how strict they are in practice.

Who sets age restrictions on video games?

Roughly two dozen video game age rating systems exist worldwide. Most European countries, for example, adhere to the Pan European Game Information (PEGI) standard, and in the United States, Canada,...

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The one and only Chelyabinsk.

The one and only Chelyabinsk.

So my first business trip this year… Wait, what am I saying — this decade! :) Okay, so my first business trip this decade took me to the famed Chelyabinsk!

If you know Russia well, you know the stereotypes about how “tough/rugged” the people are here. But it’s not a bad thing! No, just the opposite, the jokes are reverent! One-liners like “People from Chelyabinsk are so tough that…” have turned the city into such a well-known brand that if I was… I don’t know, a taxi driver, I’d give everyone from here 10% off just out of respect! I can’t get enough of these memes! I searched the web for these memes and couldn’t stop laughing for 15 minutes :) The best part...

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What ISO 27001 certification is, and why we need it

What ISO 27001 certification is, and why we need it

Recently, TÜV AUSTRIA confirmed that the information security management system we apply using Kaspersky Security Network (KSN) infrastructure is in line with the ISO/IEC 27001:2013 standard in the delivery of malicious and suspicious files. TÜV also affirmed the safe storage and access to these files in the Kaspersky Lab Distributed File System (KLDFS). Here is what ISO/IEC 27001:2013 certification is all about.

What is ISO 27001?

ISO 27001 is an international standard with requirements for the creation, maintenance, and development of information security management systems. Essentially, it’s a collection of best practices addressing...

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Lüderitz and why giraffes and penguins never made it to America, even though they don’t need a visa.

Lüderitz and why giraffes and penguins never made it to America, even though they don’t need a visa.

Day 5 of our Namibia trip is here, and already off to an interesting start. After trekking, touring and giving our cameras a workout in the Namibian desert sands and dunes, it was time to move on to Lüderitz.

Off we went, driving across the endlessly wonderful and wonderfully endless Namibia.

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We had a 460+ km route planned for the day. It might not seem long, but after getting paranoid remembering how awful the road was two days ago, we decided to get an early start. Who knows what it’d be like before we reached the paved part they promised at the end?

That terrible road still haunted...

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FAQ: Microsoft, Kaspersky and KB4524244 security update issues

FAQ: Microsoft, Kaspersky and KB4524244 security update issues

What happened?

Microsoft released security update KB4524244 as a part of its February 2020 Patch Tuesday. This update caused problems with some devices and Microsoft revoked it.

Why Kaspersky is involved in the story?

The update addresses a security vulnerability that was found in Kaspersky Rescue Disk, and then publicly disclosed in April 2019. This was later fixed in August 2019.

What is the Kaspersky Rescue Disk?

This is a free tool to clean your infected computer even if the operating system (OS) won’t load.

What was the vulnerability?

It was possible to run an untrusted UEFI image (e.g. custom operating system) on a...

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Mom, I want to be a geologist!

Mom, I want to be a geologist!

The emotions evoked from a short walk through the rocky area surrounding the Namibian town of Luderitz can be summed up rather succinctly. In fact, one word would suffice. Or maybe one or two more. Unfortunately, they’re all expletives.

But they’re just rocks, I hear you say. OK, let me try and share my impressions in a slightly differently way – like this ->

They’re not just rocks. This is a real mix, a hodgepodge of all kinds of rock forms. It’s as though someone threw heaps of different kinds of stones into a giant “stone mixer” and heated it up on one side. And it turned out something like this. Over a huge area:

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Sedimentary rock layers, next to...

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Ginp mobile Trojan fakes incoming SMS messages

Ginp mobile Trojan fakes incoming SMS messages

Having infiltrated a phone, most mobile banking Trojans try to gain access to SMS messages. They do so to intercept one-time confirmation codes from banks. Armed with such a code, the malware owners can make a payment or siphon off funds without the victim noticing. At the same time, many mobile Trojans use text messages to infect more devices by sending the victim’s contacts a bad download link.

Some malicious apps are more creative, using SMS access to distribute other things in your name, such as offensive text messages. The Ginp malware, which we first detected last fall, can even create incoming texts on the victim’s phone that no one...

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A hot day at Deadvlei.

A hot day at Deadvlei.

A bit like with the Valley of Death, though its name is macabre and ominous, Deadvlei couldn’t be more beautiful! The locals realize this too, for this here ‘Dead Marsh’ clay pan with its dead forest upon it is the ‘business card’ of the country: any search on the internet for anything at all about the country returns photos of the place.

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The trees, though dead, really are striking, especially given such a vast barren backdrop. You can meditate upon them, in-between taking photos of them, for ages. Which we did…

We were ages taking pics too – as you can see…

Hard to imagine this was once a marsh. But it was – with trees, rushes, lotuses, and...

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Ok girls and dudes – time for some dunes.

Ok girls and dudes – time for some dunes.

The famous dunes of Namibia – in the Namib desert – were the ‘main dish’ of our Namibian trip. The dunes have been on my Top-100 Most Beautiful Must-See Places on the Planet, I think since I first drew it up. I’d long… longed to get there, and finally, early this year – I did it!

As I’ve already reported, the Namib is one of the driest places on the planet, with a mere centimeter of rain falling PER YEAR! As you’d expect, accordingly, hardly anything grows here at all. Oh, and another thing about the Namib – it’s the oldest desert in the world! If the internet is to be believed, it is 50-80 million years’ old! That is, it’s had dinosaurs roaming...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 129

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 129

Welcome to the 129th episode of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast! Dave and I cover a handful of stories that you may have missed but should be aware of, and take you behind the scenes of the upcoming Kaspersky Security Analyst Summit, AKA #TheSAS2020 coming up in April.

To kick things off, we discuss a story about a new warning from the UK police, who are warning businesses that cybercriminals may be employing cleaning services to gain access to corporate networks.

From there, we head to Wisconsin, where we look at a ransomware attack on the city of Racine. Details are still emerging, but the municipality has noted that it will not be...

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Twitter settings: How to protect your account and data

Twitter settings: How to protect your account and data

The world’s most dynamic social network brings together all kinds of people: stars, politicians, journalists, IT experts, and just sociable types. Alas, like any other big Internet community, Twitter is not immune to bots, troublemakers, spammers, and even scammers. We explain what security and privacy settings will help keep them at bay.

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Should you buy a smartphone for your kid?

Should you buy a smartphone for your kid?

Many kids today get their first smartphones when they are 11–12 or even younger. A majority carries a gadget around by the time they are in high school. Peer pressure does play a role, and phone-free kids see everyone around them fidgeting with their phones. The decision is yours, however, and in this post we discuss the pros and cons of that purchase, as well as provide tips for choosing a gadget if you decide to buy one.

No one but you is in a position to say if your kid needs a phone or can handle the responsibility of having a phone. In every single case, buying a smartphone for your kid carries pros and cons.

A smartphone for your kid: Cons
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Poles, meridians, tropics, circles – a brief digression.

Poles, meridians, tropics, circles – a brief digression.

What with our crossing – on foot – the Tropic of Capricorn in Namibia, which I told you about in yesterday’s post, I got to thinking about the two very important geographical points, seven lines, a pair of meridians, and five parallels that adorn our globe – in all, nine objects:

– The North Pole;
– the South Pole;
– the Greenwich meridian;
– the 180th meridian;
– the equator;
– the Arctic Circle;
– the Tropic of Cancer;
– the Tropic of Capricorn; and
– the Antarctic Circle.

I’ve been fortunate enough to have been at both the Poles and I’ve crossed all the meridians and parallels plenty times (mostly not noticing – high up in a...

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Will an immobilizer save your car from being stolen?

Will an immobilizer save your car from being stolen?

Automobiles are getting ever smarter, and cracking them with a crowbar and a screwdriver is getting ever more difficult. Statistics back up that assumption: According to research from Jan C. van Ours and Ben Vollaard highlighting car theft and recovery data, vehicle theft decreased by 70% between 1995 and 2008 in the Netherlands and by as much as 80% in Great Britain.

One of the causes of the decrease is the ubiquitous introduction of so-called “immobilizers.” Immobilizers, however, are just as susceptible to cracking as any other relatively complex technology. Cybersecurity researcher Wouter Bokslag chose this as the subject of his Read more...

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Deeper into Namibia: the bluest sky, the Tropic of Capricorn, and odd-shaped aloe & cactii.

Deeper into Namibia: the bluest sky, the Tropic of Capricorn, and odd-shaped aloe & cactii.

Back to the day we checked out exotic birds and geological wizardry…

We left Vogelfederberg in the afternoon, but we still had a full 270km ahead of us before we were to get to our next hotel. I wouldn’t have minded, for the sun was out, the skies were bright blue and cloudless, and the desert scenery continued to astound; however, the roads was becoming markedly worse…

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Not that the road was full of potholes or anything; it wasn’t that bad. The problem lay in the way the sand on the road became rather heavily compacted somehow and it had formed itself into little ridges that ran across the road,...

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Namibian pink feathers, pink lakes, and mysteriouos geology.

Namibian pink feathers, pink lakes, and mysteriouos geology.

Skeleton Coast – done. Time to crack on further along our Namibian route. Next up – the country’s famous dunes, which are best seen at Sossusvlei. From Swakopmund (where we stayed the previous night) it’s around 400km. Sounds a lot, but when I tell you that those 400km were perhaps the most interesting and intense of any road I’ve been on – ever – well… the more distance the merrier!

For on this journey we experienced: flamingoes and pelicans, a mysterious mountain with endless views all around, a deep gorge, never-ending roads as straight as die, our crossing the Tropic of Capricorn, and our car getting stuck in the sand!...

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Coronavirus phishing

Coronavirus phishing

Some malefactors just don’t know when to stop. First, we saw malware masked as files about coronavirus, and now they’re sending phishing e-mails that exploit the very same epidemic.

Phishing with the coronavirus for e-mail credentials

The letters appear to come from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which is a real organization in the United States, and they do recommend some actions regarding the coronavirus. The e-mails also come from a convincing domain, cdc-gov.org, whereas the CDC’s real domain is cdc.gov. A user not paying careful attention isn’t likely to notice the difference.

The letters claim that the CDC has “established a management system...

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Backing up is no panacea when blackmailers publish stolen data

Backing up is no panacea when blackmailers publish stolen data

Backing up data has been one of the most effective, though labor-intensive, safeguards against encrypting ransomware so far. Now, malefactors seem to have caught up with those who rely on backups. The creators of several ransomware programs, confronted with victims refusing to pay the ransom, shared their data online.

Data publication makes threats into reality

Threats to make confidential information public are nothing new. For example, in 2016, the group behind the cryptoware that infected the San Francisco Municipal Railway‘s systems tried that trick. They never followed through on their threat, though.

Maze was the first
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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 128

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 128

We begin the latest episode of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast looking at recent research from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) — and an interesting unsecured server.

The research from the EFF focuses on one of our favorite topics: privacy. In this case, the privacy violation is Ring’s sharing data with third parties. Sticking with the topic of privacy, we hop across the pond and look at the GDPR — everyone’s favorite topic. This week, we discuss the financial impact of the regulation and compare it with regulations in the US.

For our third story, we jump into the world of corporate espionage. This fitness-related story has some...

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Cyber-news from the dark side: Er, who said you could sell my data?

Cyber-news from the dark side: Er, who said you could sell my data?

January 28 is my aunt Olga’s birthday. It also happens to be Data Privacy Day. And my aunt Olga still isn’t aware! But she should be! For digital data is the currency of the new millennium. Accumulated knowledge of trillions of clicks and transactions – it’s a gold mine for any business. And multimillion-dollar businesses – lots of them – are based on the sale of these cyber-resources.

Global IT companies have more access to personal data than do countries. As a result, this topic is extremely important; it’s also toxic.

And, wherever there’s money – there are always bad guys. Cyber-bad-guys getting up to no good with...

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Faking e-mails: Why it is even possible

Faking e-mails: Why it is even possible

Sometimes it’s easy to spot phishing e-mails just by checking the “From” field. However, that’s not always the case; making a fake e-mail indistinguishable from a genuine one actually is possible. If an attacker knows how to do such a thing, the targeted organization is really in trouble. Most people wouldn’t have a second thought before clicking on a malicious link or file that they got in an e-mail seemingly from their boss or their top client — and it’s hard to blame them, especially if there’s no way to tell the e-mail was spoofed.

But why is it possible to forge a perfect fake e-mail in the first place? Andrew Konstantinov’s talk on e-mail...

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