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Meitu – the app with all the permissions

Meitu – the app with all the permissions

Meitu, the ‘anime-makeover’ app is doing something that users perhaps didn’t realize they’d signed up to. It’s been found to be harvesting all sorts of data on users, including your location, reading, changing and deleting the data in your phone’s memory, access your IMEI number (unique identifiers for phones) and more.

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This is somewhat concerning considering the app makers don’t tell you what they’re doing with the data. Are they using it for advertising purposes or for something else? The chances are it’s to do with adverts (as most things seem to be these days) but as users are kept in the dark regarding the purpose, it’s...

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Tips to avoid letting social media ruin your family life

Tips to avoid letting social media ruin your family life

Have you ever considered how much of our self-confidence depends on likes nowadays? Digital communication is meant to shrink distances and connect people from different cities and countries – to help them keep contact with their friends and family. Unfortunately, it can also work in quite the opposite way. We all agree that Internet cannot replace face-to-face communication but we can’t help but seek attention online. We long for all those precious likes and shares.

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Is this problem really that BIG?

The question can bring up many hypothetical and theoretical speculations, so we decided to conduct some research and rely on the...

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Tip of the week: How to manage device security remotely

Tip of the week: How to manage device security remotely

Many of us use several devices throughout the day, relying on a PC or a laptop for work, tablet for gaming and Web surfing, and, of course, a smartphone. If we look at entire households, that’s a lot of devices, each of them requiring an equally high level of security.

To save the time needed to support each separate device, you can manage all of your security products through the My Kaspersky portal, where you can check all devices for threats, update antivirus databases, and more.

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It takes just a few clicks to integrate Kaspersky Internet Security into My Kaspersky.

1. Click Protect all devices in the main window.

2. Click...

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How to tame your Web cookies

How to tame your Web cookies

Have you ever visited Amazon.com only to find items you’d forgotten in your shopping cart? Returned to Hulu and found you were already logged in? Have you ever noticed how the stories your favorite new site recommends change as you click on different links? Of course — those sites, like most websites, use cookies to “remember” you.

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Such conveniences make life online a touch nicer and more human-feeling. They also help marketers track your online activity and enable advertisers to target you with astonishing precision.

So: Cookies make life a little bit nicer, but they’re not exactly good for you. And although the term Web cookiedidn’t directly...

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EyePyramid: happy-go-lucky malware

EyePyramid: happy-go-lucky malware

When we talk about malware on Kaspersky Daily — and we do that pretty often — we typically choose those malware species that, according to our data, have impacted a lot of people. CryptXXX, TeslaCrypt, and other nasties that have attacked millions all over the world are some examples. Malware that has been detected only a few times usually doesn’t merit much attention. There is a lot of malware out there, as you know — we just can’t devote a blog post to every single one.

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But there is an exception to every rule. Today we are going to talk about malware dubbed EyePyramid. No, we didn’t name it; its creators did. And the reason we are going to...

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Security hole in WhatsApp and how to fix it

Security hole in WhatsApp and how to fix it

Friday the 13th is always a day that superstitious people look to find bad news tied to random events or actions, like a black cat crossing their path or breaking a mirror. However on some occasions, bad news can also break on such an “unlucky” day.

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Today, marks one of those occasions as The Guardian broke a story entitled WhatsApp backdoor allows snooping on encrypted messages. The story focuses on a reported security backdoor from researcher Tobias Boelter.

According to the exclusive in the Guardian:

WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption relies on the generation of unique security keys, using the acclaimed Signal protocol, developed by Open...

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Quiz: Are you a likeaholic?

Quiz: Are you a likeaholic?

Social networks are awesome. They feed you news that matter, bring your friends closer, and give you a chance to connect with people all over the world. Your friends are far away? Here’s Facebook to help you talk to them. Ever wondered how your first school love is doing? Just open their Facebook or Instagram page and see! OK, I’m being Captain Obvious here, everyone knows that.

But not everyone thinks about the negative aspects of using social networks. First, they devour your time. Have you ever calculated how much time you spend on Facebook? For me it’s about 50 minutes a day. I could’ve learned another language if I weren’t trying to...

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What is a private messenger?

What is a private messenger?

So, what is a private messenger? Many would just say that a messaging app is private if the messages it conveys are encrypted. But in reality, messaging privacy is a lot more complex than that. At the Chaos Communication Congress, Roland Schilling and Frieder Steinmetz gave a talk in which they explained in simple words what a private messenger is and what attributes a messaging app must have to be considered private.

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To understand the idea of private messaging, Schilling and Steinmetz suggest that we imagine trying to have a private conversation at a party. What do we do to make that conversation private? We probably...

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Booking systems’ insecurity allows free flights and more

Booking systems’ insecurity allows free flights and more

People post photos of their tickets online. Why shouldn’t they? Instagram alone contains thousands of images showing concert, airplane, and even lottery tickets.

If everyone does it, why shouldn’t you?

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In fact, the last thing you should ever do with a ticket or boarding pass is post it online. This piece of paper contains data that allows anybody to steal your ticket (we’re not exaggerating!), rack up air miles, or even play a low-down trick on you. More than a year ago we discussed just what kind of bad jokes people can make with ticket information. Recently, security researchers Karsten Nohl and Nemanja Nikodijevic raised...

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Have we created unsocial media?

Have we created unsocial media?

Main Findings
  • People go on social media to feel better: around half of people choose to post optimistic things online – including things that make them smile (61%).
  • However, social media doesn’t always leave people feeling positive: 57% admitted that after going on social media they have felt that someone has a better life than them.
  • People use social media as a forum for gaining social validation: only a third (31%) of people are not bothered about the number of likes they receive for their posts.
  • People – men especially – become upset if they do not get the likes they hope for: a quarter of men (24%) said they worry that if they get few likes...
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Kaspersky for Mac: More than just antivirus

Kaspersky for Mac: More than just antivirus

Apple’s macOS is considered more secure than Windows, and with good reason: malware for macOS is far less frequently found in the wild. Unfortunately, that lets many users believe they don’t need any protection at all. They are completely wrong: Malware is not the only online threat to computer users.

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Phishing, for example, endangers users on all platforms. Professionally crafted phishing pages can look just like real ones, so many people can’t tell the difference between legitimate and fake webpages. You can test your skill with this quiz and see for yourself.

In addition, criminals know how to fool their victims by hiding phishing links...

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2016 results, 2017 predictions

2016 results, 2017 predictions

As a tradition, at the end of the year our GReAT cybersecurity experts publish their predictions for the upcoming year. Let’s see which of last year’s predictions came true and then try to look into the future and see what awaits us in 2017.

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User security

As predicted by GReAT last year, ransomware of all kinds proliferated throughout the year. For example, 2016 was the year when notorious threats like Petya and CryptXXX first saw the light of day. Also fulfilling the forecast, an cryptor for mac OS appeared back in the spring.

All in all, the number of ransomware samples and attacks grew significantly. However, we did a better...

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Switcher hacks Wi-Fi routers, switches DNS

Switcher hacks Wi-Fi routers, switches DNS

One of the most important pieces of advice on cybersecurity is that you should never input logins, passwords, credit card information, and so forth, if you think the page URL looks weird. Weird links are sometimes a sign of danger. If you see, say, fasebook.com instead of facebook.com, that link is weird.

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But what if the fake Web page is hosted on the legitimate page? It turns out this scenario is actually plausible — and the bad guys don’t even need to hack the server that hosts the target page. Let’s examine how it works.

Hijacking and then switching DNS requests

The trick here is in the way our normal-looking Web page addresses are an...

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Who owns your digital memories?

Who owns your digital memories?

Last week, I was chatting with a colleague when our conversation shifted to how much she loves the “On this Day” update from Facebook, which lets her revisit memories from years ago. The digital scrapbooks made her day, she said, and she’s super-happy that Facebook rolled out the feature.

In the days that followed, I could not help but think back on that conversation as I looked at my own daily updates from the fine folks at Facebook. I sync my photos and videos to two separate cloud services and an external drive, but these updates on Facebook are more engaging.

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Sure, you can look at a photo or video and get good feelings all over again. But Facebook...

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Quiz: Can you tell a cyberthreat from biological one?

Quiz: Can you tell a cyberthreat from biological one?

Some physical viruses and parasites behave a lot like electronic viruses — or is it the other way around? Viruses take control of their hosts and use them to reproduce and to infect other victims. Physicians and cybersecurity experts can differentiate their behavior patterns. Can you?

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Decrypting CryptXXX version 3 — for free

Decrypting CryptXXX version 3 — for free

In April 2016 a young and ambitious trojan cryptor known by the name CryptXXX was released. It was distributed by the infamous Angler and Neutrino exploit kits. It’s creators certainly hoped that after the release they could lay on the couch and watch the money flow from the victims pockets to their bitcoin wallets. But things did not go the way they had expected.

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A few days after the CryptXXX trojan was discovered, experts from Kaspersky Lab found a mistake in CryptXXX file encryption algorithms and thus were able to create a cure. A free utility called Rannoh decryptor could be used to decrypt files, encrypted by CryptXXX.

The criminals had...

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NoMoreRansom: Bigger, better, faster, stronger!

NoMoreRansom: Bigger, better, faster, stronger!

It feels good when something you created does better than expected. When we posted recently about the NoMoreRansom project, which started as a joint initiative of Europol, the Netherlands police, Intel Security, and Kaspersky Lab, the project was already rather big. By that time, 13 more countries had joined, and NoMoreRansom had already helped more than 2,500 users successfully decrypt data that had been damaged by ransomware — without paying ransom.

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Helping even one user get their data back is already well worth the effort, and 2,500 is really great — it means we are doing the right thing.

And now we are pleased to announce that the...

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Safe online holiday shopping

Safe online holiday shopping

It’s the most wonderful time of the year — families gearing up for the holiday season, bright-eyed shoppers making their lists and checking them twice…cybercriminals licking their chops and picking out victims. With online shopping increasing every year, you shouldn’t be surprised to learn that Kaspersky Lab has also tracked increasing cybercriminal attacks, in particular during this busy shopping season.

When it comes to consumer and retail cybercrime, this time of year is actually no different than any other — except for volume. More shopping means more targets, and more targets make criminals salivate. Everyone should be on the lookout for...

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Faking out fake tech support

Faking out fake tech support

A few years ago, a criminal gang in India was making easy money off tech-illiterate people in Europe, Australia, and Great Britain. They did quite well until they encountered Kaspersky Lab’s David Jacoby and, later, the Crime Investigation Cell of the Indian Police.

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The scenario should be familiar to our readers: Criminals called random landline phone numbers during the day. They introduced themselves as representatives of a large, well-known software vendor and convinced victims that something was wrong with their PCs. People who knew little about computers took the bait.

To convince their victims, the fake technical support specialists sometimes told them...

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What is ransomware?

What is ransomware?

This post is intended for people who either never heard of ransomware or knew about it but didn’t really pay attention. We will explain in practical, down-to-earth language what ransomware is. Along the way we will also cover why even careful users need to fear ransomware, and how to take proper measures to protect yourself against this type of malware.

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What is ransomware?

Ransomware is a type of malware that has made fast strides and is now unbelievably pervasive. It comes in two major types: cryptors and blockers.

Having infected a computer, cryptors encrypt valuable data, including documents, photos, game saves, databases, and so on. Once they’re encrypted, the...

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Facebook privacy settings: What you need to know

Facebook privacy settings: What you need to know

Facebook’s settings are a moving target. Over the past few years, the company has changed various settings several times, adding, moving, even removing options. Now it’s really easy to get lost among all these functions. So, once again, we’re here to explain how to fortify your Facebook privacy. For more on Facebook security, check out our post, Everything you need to know about Facebook security settings.

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Facebook’s settings tabs contain quite a range of options. We’ll structure our tutorial the way Facebook organizes its settings — at least, for now.

The Privacy tab

Who can see my stuff? This tab has three interesting...

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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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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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