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How to deal with internal BEC

How to deal with internal BEC

In recent years, business e-mail compromise (BEC) attacks have become more frequent. Their objective is to compromise business correspondence for the purpose of committing financial fraud, extracting confidential information, or harming a company’s reputation. In our previous post about the types of BEC and ways to deal with them, we mentioned e-mail hijacks. Today, however, we’re talking about the most dangerous type of BEC attack — the internal BEC. We recently developed and implemented a new technology to protect against this particular threat.

Why an internal BEC is more dangerous than an external one

Internal BEC attacks differ from other attack...

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Tasmania – the video collection.

Tasmania – the video collection.

NB: with this post – about a place I visited before the lockdown – I want to bring you some positivism, beauty, and reassurance that we’ll all get a chance to see great different places again. Meanwhile, I encourage you not to violate the stay-at-home regime. Instead, I hope you’re using this time for catching up on what you never seemed to find the time to do… ‘before’ :).

Yes, I know: I wrote how yesterday’s post was the last on Tasmania. But I’d forgotten about all the video material my travel companion, OA, had taken along the way! Plenty of it too – two hours worth, all shot on his smartphone. So, herewith, an opportunity to get the popcorn in, dim...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 144

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 144

The Chinese vision of social ratings has generated a lot of hype, and people on both sides of the aisle have chimed in. However, one point often forgotten is that social ratings affect us all, whether we like it or not.

For this edition of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast, Dave and I sit down with Marco Preuss to discuss some recent research on social ratings. During our conversation, we discuss the current state of travel, potential new hurdles, the ethics of social ratings, and more.

We close the podcast on a different note, talking about the use of personal photos in the training of facial recognition technologies — and how the masks...

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Tasmania in a chopper.

Tasmania in a chopper.

NB: with this post – about a place I visited before the lockdown – I want to bring you some positivism, beauty, and reassurance that we’ll all get a chance to see great different places again. Meanwhile, I encourage you not to violate the stay-at-home regime. Instead, I hope you’re using this time for catching up on what you never seemed to find the time to do… ‘before’ :).

Tasmania – done, at least in terms or a road trip therearound, plus much trekking along its peninsulas. The only thing still not done – chopper ride!…

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First up – Tasmanian forest. You can see here how a swathe had been cut down, then replanted. I bet this is something to do with the very active...

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Ahoy, Cape Hauy!

Ahoy, Cape Hauy!

NB: with this post – about a place I visited before the lockdown – I want to bring you some positivism, beauty, and reassurance that we’ll all get a chance to see great different places again. Meanwhile, I encourage you not to violate the stay-at-home regime. Instead, I hope you’re using this time for catching up on what you never seemed to find the time to do… ‘before’ :).

Onward we stroll, on the last day of our trek along Three Capes Track on the Tasman Peninsula. On today’s menu – getting to Cape Hauy. Over there… ->

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At first it was the usual sturdy path with super views, but a bit later we entered a really strange wood…

…In which there grow these here bright...

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Sudoku… for bored, locked-down boffins.

Sudoku… for bored, locked-down boffins.

What? Bored? Surely not! Surely you’re reading those novels you kept putting off, that autobiography; fixing that faucet, finally getting round to that long-overdue spring clean, no?!

Ok, let’s say you’ve done all such things (or not). And now it’s back to ‘bored’. Well here’s something a bit different to end that boredom – at least for… a few days: a particularly tricky spot of Sudoku!

Now, before the knee-jerk groaning and eye-rolling, just let me explain. This isn’t your usual easy Sudoku you get in those Sudoku magazines. Oh no. This one was sent to me with the comment: ‘The most difficult Sudoku there is!’. Fine by me – the harder the...

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ATMs need quarantines too!

ATMs need quarantines too!

I take more than a hundred flights in the average year. Usually traveling with companions, I fly all around the world — and while we’re abroad, we pay by card or phone, mostly with contactless services such as Apple or Google Pay, practically everywhere. In China you can even use WeChat to buy fruits and vegetables from grannies at markets. And the current coronavirus pandemic has only made the use of virtual money more popular.

At the other end of the spectrum, you get the odd surprise: In Hong Kong of all places, taxis take cash — only — and just last year, I ate in two Frankfurt restaurants that required cash. What?!! Instead of enjoying our post-dinner...

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Raising digital parents

Raising digital parents

In this post, I’m going to tell you a story about my parents, how they got into technology, and what it required from me. At the end of each section I’ll try to sum up the key points and give some advice to those seeking to bring their parents safely into the world of technology.

How I got started with technology

I remember the day I bought my first smartphone, an HP iPAQ, which ran on Windows Mobile 2003 SE. I brought it home and showed it to my parents. My dad tried it and said: It looks nice, but where’s the keypad? He then tried using it and said that he’d rather stick with his Nokia with its trusty number pad.

My parents were not digital natives, in fact,...

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Unsecure ATMs should be quarantined too!

Unsecure ATMs should be quarantined too!

Each year, accompanied by travel companions, I tend to take more than a hundred flights all around the world. And practically everywhere these days we always pay by card or phone, and mostly contactless like Apple or Google Pay. In China you can even pay via WeChat when you’re at the market buying fruit and veg from grannies. And the sadly famous biovirus makes the use of virtual money more popular even still.

At the other end of the spectrum, you get the odd surprise: in Hong Kong, of all places, you need to pay cash for a taxi – always! In Frankfurt, of all places, last year in two separate restaurants they only took cash too. EH?!! We had to go...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 143

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 143

We kick off the 143rd edition of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast with a coronavirus-driven unemployment scam in the US.

The US Secret Service has issued an alert warning that some states are seeing an increase in fraudulent activity on unemployment insurance claims. Stick around for the bonus money-laundering. Following that story, we move to the film industry. A new study highlights an increase of illegal downloads of Hollywood hits.

For our third story, we head to the UK for an NHS snafu that allowed people to see the group’s COVID-19 app roadmap. Finally, it’s back to the US, where the senate voted to extend the FBI’s right to scoop...

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Turnkey protection as a service

Turnkey protection as a service

Having worked with Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) models for some time, we are now becoming increasingly engaged with similar schemes for providing entire infrastructures (IaaS) and platforms (PaaS). And we think that’s a good direction for organizations around the world; using a turnkey solution helps businesses focus on their core tasks. But is it possible to provide enterprise-grade companies fully integrated protection within a Security-as-a-Service model?

Our understanding of turnkey protection

To answer that question, we must first define what we mean by fully integrated protection. If we’re talking about enterprises, then it means protection of the...

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Blade Runner, Tasmanian version.

Blade Runner, Tasmanian version.

NB: with this post – about a place I visited before the lockdown – I want to bring you some positivism, beauty, and reassurance that we’ll all get a chance to see great different places again. Meanwhile, I encourage you not to violate the stay-at-home regime. Instead, I hope you’re using this time for catching up on what you never seemed to find the time to do… ‘before’ :).

Onward we marched, along Three Capes Track. The time had come to visit Cape Pillar, from which mind-blowing views like this are to be enjoyed:

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Around half of the seven kilometers to get there are walked along this elevated wooden path:

Onward it winds, snake-like:

It’s even...

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On The Road Again
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Social ratings: Be careful what you post

Social ratings: Be careful what you post

It’s already hard to imagine life without social networks. We use them to chat, communicate, share our creations, discuss the hottest news, and more. It’s worth keeping in mind, though, that people may use your social media profiles to assess, for example, your ability to repay a bank loan. Or to decide whether you’re suitable for a particular job.

The measure of a person’s potential based on past actions, social circle, and the like is called a social rating. A person’s social rating is similar in some ways to the credit rating that banks use when issuing loans, but it can include a far wider range of information.

Many countries already see the...

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Cyber-yesteryear – pt. 2: 1991-1992.

Cyber-yesteryear – pt. 2: 1991-1992.

Herewith, I continue my tales from the cyber-old-school side. You’ve already had the first installment – about when I caught my very first fish virus, about our first antivirus utility, and about when I decided to go it alone to become a member of a profession that didn’t really exist back then (as a freelance antivirus analyst).

So, after a few weeks as a freelancer – which was basically a few weeks of doing not much at all as I couldn’t find any customers – I decided I needed to get a regular day job again with a company. So what I did was organize a ‘tender’ between three private companies that had offered me work.

One of them (KAMI) deserves a...

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On The Road Again
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Ethical principles of vulnerability disclosure

Ethical principles of vulnerability disclosure

Errors and vulnerabilities become almost inevitable when developing any complex IT system, software or hardware. These errors are often found not by employees and technical experts of the company that produces the software or hardware, but by external researchers. Eliminating these errors and potential vulnerabilities is key to strong cybersecurity, where our researchers and experts work too. Thus, the main source of errors and failures — humans — is also a key factor for their timely detection and correction. At the same time, it is important to realize that this process of error correction can potentially create new risks and failures...

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Go easy on the traffic!

Go easy on the traffic!

Sometimes we take it for granted, to be sure: unlimited internet access. We’re so lucky to have it. But I wonder if you remember a time when internet access was charged per-minute or per-megabyte of traffic? And when the (dial-up) speed was almost laughable by today’s standards? I mean, we’re now approaching 1GB speed in homes. Impressive…

High-speed internet really has helped out of course in the current covid situation. It’s enabled a great many (though by far not all) to be able to continue to work under lockdown. Imagine if this biological fiasco had occurred in the pre-internet era, or even in the nineties with its snail-like internet speeds. There’d be zero...

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Security analysts of the world – united (remotely)!

Security analysts of the world – united (remotely)!

The world seems to be slowly opening back up – at least a little, at least in some places. Some countries are even opening up their borders. Who’d have thought it?

Of course, some sectors will open up slower than others, like large-scale events, concerts and conferences (offline ones – where folks turn up to a hotel/conference center). Regarding the latter, our conferences too have been affected by the virus from hell. These have gone from offline to online, and that includes our mega project the Security Analyst Summit (SAS).

This year’s SAS should have taken place this April in one of our favorite (for other K-events) host cities,...

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The Snow Queen: A cybersecurity report in seven stories

The Snow Queen: A cybersecurity report in seven stories

What do you think the fairy tale The Snow Queen by Danish cybersecurity specialist Hans Christian Andersen is really about? A brave girl who defeats the personification of winter and death to save her beloved friend? Think again.

Let’s get real: It’s a fairly detailed account of an investigation by up-and-coming information security expert Gerda into how a certain Kai got infected with a nasty piece of sophisticated malware. This so-called fairy tale is written in the form of seven stories that clearly correspond to the investigation stages.

Story 1: A mirror and its fragments

If you’ve ever read our Securelist.com expert blog (or...

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Tasmanian nights – with views to delight.

Tasmanian nights – with views to delight.

NB: with this post – about a place I visited before the lockdown – I want to bring you some positivism, beauty, and reassurance that we’ll all get a chance to see great different places again. Meanwhile, I encourage you not to violate the stay-at-home regime. Instead, I hope you’re using this time for catching up on what you never seemed to find the time to do… ‘before’ :).

Up at dawn, and into day two of our walk along Three Capes Track

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Just the other day, not far away, we were walking around blatantly sedimentary rocky landscapes, around about Remarkable Cave and Tessellated Pavement, while today’s rocky landscapes were blatantly of volcanic...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 142

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 142

Welcome to the 142nd edition of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast. This week, Dave and I tackle a number of pressing stories and have a conversation with one of the company’s regional managing directors.

We start the podcast by looking at a data breach at a dating site. Earlier in the week, the Shiny Hunters made more than 70 million credentials, including ones for dating site Zoosk, available for sale on the dark web. If you are a user of the site, be sure to change your password — and if you have an account and don’t use it, consider closing the account.

Following that story, we head over to India, where the country’s COVID-19 tracking...

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Tasmania’s sensational sunsets and sunrises.

Tasmania’s sensational sunsets and sunrises.

NB: with this post – about a place I visited before the lockdown – I want to bring you some positivism, beauty, and reassurance that we’ll all get a chance to see great different places again. Meanwhile, I encourage you not to violate the stay-at-home regime. Instead, I hope you’re using this time for catching up on what you never seemed to find the time to do… ‘before’ :).

Now let me see – where was I with my tales from the Tasmanian side? Ah yes – with the marvelous views, like these, from the comfort of a cozy sofa! ->

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The views become all the more marvelous when there’s a sunset or sunrise. And that includes the views of the...

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Remote working and ransomware

Remote working and ransomware

The past few months have turned the world on its head, and it won’t be news to readers of this blog that the universal shift to remote working has radically altered the threat landscape. Among other things, the people responsible for corporate cyberprotection now need to consider two new factors: the geographical distribution of the office network, and the presence of computers used for work in home environments.

Threats in the office network

So, your employees are now working from home, remotely connecting to the corporate network. That essentially means the office network is now distributed throughout the city (maybe more than one). That means if a piece...

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Cyber-yesteryear – pt. 1: 1989-1991.

Cyber-yesteryear – pt. 1: 1989-1991.

Having written a post recently about our forever topping the Top-3 in independent testing, I got a bit nostalgic for the past. Then, by coincidence, there was the 20th anniversary of the ILOVEYOU virus worm: more nostalgia, and another post! But why stop there, I thought. Not like there’s much else to do. So I’ll continue! Thus, herewith, yet more K-nostalgia, mostly in a random order as per whatever comes into my head…

First up, we press rewind (on the 80s’ cassette player) back to the late 1980s, when Kaspersky was merely my surname ).

Part one – prehistorical: 1989-1991

I traditionally consider October 1989 as when I made my first real steps in...

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Ransomware: Collateral damage

Ransomware: Collateral damage

You might think a ransomware-infected ATM, a timetable showing an extortionist’s message at the airport, or a slot machine demanding a ransom in bitcoins would be the stuff of urban legend. Nevertheless, people observed all those things during the WannaCry ransomware epidemic three years ago. Therefore, today, Anti-Ransomware Day, seems like an opportune time to reminisce about those peculiar cases.

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Who would even think of infecting a payment terminal with ransomware? What could the payoff possibly be? The truth is that the creators of WannaCry did not choose explicit targets for their malware. It entered the network through ordinary personal computers and...

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2 + 12 Earth Day answers.

2 + 12 Earth Day answers.

A week or two ago, I posed 2 + 12 questions to you on the occasion of Earth Day. 

The first question was a rhetorical one: How will the world actually change as a result of global warming? 

There are various hypotheses, models, projections. For sure, sea levels are rising, but not only for the obvious reason that icebergs are melting. Yes, icebergs are melting, but so is the ice – several kilometers thick! – that covers (and presses down) places like Greenland and Antarctica, and this will cause these landmasses to slowly rise up – so much so that, for example, Greenland may join up with North America! Imagine that?! They’ll have to install a new Canadian-Danish...

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