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Syrk ransomware lurking in Fortnite cheat pack

Syrk ransomware lurking in Fortnite cheat pack

Cybercriminals try to capitalize on anything enjoying public favor, including popular games. Malware often pretends to be a pirated copy or mobile version of a game, especially if the latter has not been officially released.

Recently, a ransomware encryptor called Syrk emerged. Passed off as a cheat pack for Fortnite — a game that has built a 250-million-strong user base in two years — Syrk promises players two cheats in one package: aimbot (an autoaiming tool) and WH (aka ESP, a cheat for discovering other players’ locations in the game). But what this package really does is encrypt the victim’s files and demand ransom.

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How my iPhone got double-stolen, episode 2

How my iPhone got double-stolen, episode 2

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Almost a year ago, we wrote about a classic phishing scheme aimed at unlinking a stolen iPhone from the victim’s Apple ID account. The purpose was to resell the phone not for spare parts, but as a full-fledged second-hand smartphone that’s way more valuable.

Last time, fortune favored the scammers, who were able to phish out the iCloud username and password they needed. This time around, we’ll investigate a more complex scheme for extracting the confidential data of phone-theft victims, including its Plan B, which is almost bound to catch anyone who manages to dodge Plan A.

Step 1: iPhone theft

It all began ordinarily enough, with my colleague...

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How a simple office prank can lead to serious damage

How a simple office prank can lead to serious damage

Harry had been raising hell for about ten minutes already. He had a habit of finding fault in everything, from the signature in a letter not following the template to papers being stacked improperly. But today, in fairness, his complaints had some merit: John had failed to send a draft report yesterday. Nevertheless, he didn’t have to yell. After all, no one would have been around to open it the previous evening.

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John knew he didn’t have a leg to stand on. After all, Harry had written up the system administrator the previous month for leaving cables lying messily on her desk. He said that everything must be kept orderly! The system...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 106

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 106

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For the 106th edition of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast, Dave and I dive into some of the hottest cybersecurity news of the week. To start things off, we take a look at new ransomware targeting players of Fortnite. If you have kids playing the game, or you play it yourself, be on the lookout for some sketchy cheats.

Following the Fortnite news, we examine a story from the UK that discusses how Mercedes is using sensors in leased vehicles to help repo companies take back cars from those who are in arrears with their lease. After that, Dave talks with GReAT’s Brian Bartholomew about the state of health care in North America.

For the...

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The SOC 2 audit: What, how, and why?

The SOC 2 audit: What, how, and why?

As you may already know from Eugene Kaspersky’s blog or our official press release, we recently passed our SOC 2 audit. In case you do not know what that is and why it was necessary, we will fill in the details now.

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The Service and Organization Controls 2 (SOC 2) is an audit of control procedures at IT organizations that provide services. In essence, it is an international reporting standard for cybersecurity risk management systems. This standard, developed by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), was updated in March 2018.

This post is about the SOC 2 Type 1 audit (which we passed), which certifies...

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I heard a bug in Kaspersky products could be used for spying. Is that true?

I heard a bug in Kaspersky products could be used for spying. Is that true?

You may have heard that Kaspersky spies on its clients or helps other spy on them. Some such allegations we have already addressed, but recently a new case emerged, saying that Kaspersky exposed users to cross-site tracking. We address the flap in this short post.

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A journalist named Ronald Eikenberg from c’t magazine reported that Kaspersky consumer products used unique identifiers in scripts when users visited sites on the Internet, and that those could’ve potentially been used to identify the users.

The problem (which goes by the name CVE-2019-8286) affected Kaspersky Internet Security 2019,...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 105

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 105

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Welcome to the 105th instalment of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast, where Dave and I take a look at some important stories that you may have missed this week.

We begin by looking at recent news on robocall-blocking apps. Although they may try to curb these phantom calls, there is more to them than meets the eye: Some of these apps are actually sharing data with third parties.

After that story, we turn to the latest big business to be caught listening in on supposedly private recordings. This time it is Microsoft, specifically contractors with Skype. From there, we move on to the new security cameras that are using facial recognition in...

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Selfie hunting: Think twice before confirming your identity

Selfie hunting: Think twice before confirming your identity

During registration, some online services ask you to confirm your identity by uploading a selfie showing you and your ID. It’s a convenient way to prove that you are you. You don’t need to go to some distant office and stand in line. Just take a photo, upload it, and wait a short while for your account to be approved by an administrator.

Unfortunately, it’s not just legitimate websites with a good reputation interested in your selfies; they’re also of interest to phishers. Here’s how the scam works, why criminals are after your photos with ID cards, and how not to swallow the bait.

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A common business...

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Spam delivered through your company website

Spam delivered through your company website

Spammers are constantly looking for new ways to deliver spam messages to recipients, bypassing filters. Ideally, they want to make it seem like the message came from someone who has a good reputation with spam filters. For example, they seek to send spam from an address at your company, through your own website. This method, which we’ll explain below, is becoming quite popular.

These days, almost every company is interested in obtaining feedback from its customers to improve services, retain clientele, and so on. To get that feedback, companies usually place a feedback form, or even several such forms, on their website. Users can use these...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 104

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 104

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Welcome to the 104th installment of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast. This week, we take a look at some important stories that you may have missed.

We start with a meeting of the Five Eyes nations. While there, the government representatives pushed for more back doors in encryption — because of criminals. Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

Following that story, we head to the US, where a law proposed to Congress would ban such addictive properties of social networks as infinite feeds and autoplaying videos. Sticking with the law, we look at challenges from privacy groups about Amazon’s Ring doorbell and its role in surveillance — that...

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How malware steals autofill data from browsers

How malware steals autofill data from browsers

Most browsers kindly offer to save your data: account credentials, bank card details for online stores, billing address, name, and passport number for travel sites, and so on. It’s convenient and saves having to fill out the same forms all over again or worry about forgotten passwords. However, there is a catch: All of this autofill data can be scooped up by cybercriminals if your computer gets infected by a stealer — a piece of malware that steals information, including from browsers.

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Such programs are becoming increasingly popular with online scammers: In the first half of this year alone, Kaspersky’s security products detected more than...

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My home is my castle: Security technologies for the house

My home is my castle: Security technologies for the house

Your home is your own private island of tranquility where you can rest easy — if it’s secure, that is. If not, then one not-so-fine day it could turn into a public place. With that in mind, we compiled a selection of trends and new products in the field of security technologies. We explain the advantages of each, and what you as a user need to take on board.

BFgd0G2KjgmP3QqT_JxIF03gnke9NSrR.jpg?s=a9d3f0d6417d2811ec502606d026f2eeDIY security systems

Analysts predict that in the coming years more and more people will install their own security systems and monitor their homes without professional assistance. The market already offers numerous systems requiring no special knowledge and skills to set up...

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Eavesdropping smartphones: Fact or fiction?

Eavesdropping smartphones: Fact or fiction?

It’s an oft-repeated tale: Someone talks with a friend about a certain thing, and then, bang, an ad for it appears on the smartphone screen.

Some cases are easy to explain. A colleague of mine who was about to get married claims that she never googled wedding dresses, yet the pesky search engine started suggesting them all the same. And then, three months after the wedding, products for newborns began appearing in her search results, although she was not even planning to have children. There’s no great mystery here, we can dispense with the conspiracy theories.

But some cases arouse more suspicion. For example, you’ve never had a barbecue...

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Say yes to cyberimmunity and no to fear

Say yes to cyberimmunity and no to fear

I’ve been in the cybersecurity industry for more than 15 years. During that time, and together with other infosec veterans, I experienced the rise of the FUD (fear, uncertainty, doubt) hype firsthand. I have to admit, it worked. Neuromarketing science got it right with that one. Fear really did help sell security products. Like any strong medicine, however, FUD had a side effect. Not just one, actually — it had many.

We as an industry cannot escape FUD because we’re addicted to it. For us, FUD manifests itself in some of our customers demanding proof that what we’re telling them about is not just another potential breach but a real danger....

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The Great Hack

The Great Hack

Today, I will be talking about the new Netflix documentary, The Great Hack. The documentary takes a look inside the Cambridge Analytica scandal that was tied to both Brexit and the US presidential election of 2016. Yeah, that one.

Before we get into the review, I want to note that this post contains spoilers for the documentary. If you don’t want the story revealed, please stop reading now. However, to be fair, if this is the first you are hearing of Cambridge Analytica, I would like to know the rock you have been living under.

The movie opens up with a powerful image from the Burning Man festival. Brittany Kaiser writes “Cambridge Analytica” on an architectural sculpture...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 103

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 103

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For the 103rd instalment of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast, Dave and I take a look at some important stories that you may have missed this week.

To start things off, we go to Louisiana, where a handful of schools have been attacked with malware. From there, we jump across the Atlantic to South Africa, where ransomware hit an electrical company in Johannesburg.

The next story looks north to England, where Mozilla has pointed out that a tool meant to show transparency in political ads on Facebook is not working as it should. We then discuss this week’s PSA of updating your iPhone or iPad ASAP. To close things out, we look at a new...

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Update to iOS 12.4 right away

Update to iOS 12.4 right away

Updating your iPhone’s or iPad’s operating system as soon as the new version comes out is always a good idea — almost every new version of iOS contains fixes for some bugs that have been found in previous ones. But this time it might be even more crucial: iOS 12.4 fixes severe vulnerabilities in iMessage that can be exploited without any user interaction.

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The six critical vulnerabilities in iOS were found by Natalie Silvanovich and Samuel Groß, members of Google’s bug hunting team called Project Zero. What is known so far is that these bugs allow an attacker to run malicious code on victims iPhone or iPad with no user interaction needed. The only thing the...

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Personal devices at work

Personal devices at work

Many companies permit the use of personal devices for business purposes – from business calls made on personal phones to corporate network connections on home laptops. Such a state of affairs is generally beneficial, however, especially in small companies: The employee is already familiar with the device, and the company saves money. The downside, however, is that the practice creates additional cyberrisks for the business.

_STJMh-YRfgQZ2j_XDzGlaLr-1WHFnlr.jpg?s=453603ac6cb7beba9402139f4606a36dPersonal devices at work — the new normal

The number of organizations with a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy has been steadily rising over the past few years. A study last year by Oxford Economics for Samsung found that mobile devices form...

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Easier with a crowbar: hacking IoT accessories for cars

Easier with a crowbar: hacking IoT accessories for cars

We often discuss vulnerabilities of different IoT devices, ranging from smart cameras to sex toys. This time, our researchers decided to find out whether smart gadgets for cars are well secured.

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For the test, we chose a number of devices with different functions: a couple of OBD system scanners, a tire pressure/temperature monitoring system, an Internet-dependent GPS tracker, a dashcam, and a smart car alarm.

OBD scanner vs Bluetooth scanner

What we investigated? A device that plugs into the OBD connector inside the car and transmits data about speed, acceleration, engine rpm, etc. to a smartphone connected via...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 102

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 102

Welcome to the 102nd instalment of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast. For this week’s episode, Dave and I stay mostly in the consumer sphere with some highlights for parents.

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The first story of the week takes a look at the fine levied on Equifax following their 2017 databreach. The 700 million dollar fine levied doesn’t sit well with me, but you can hear the full takes in the podcast. From there, we jump over to privacy from a banking institution who points out that posting pets on Instagram may be putting millennials at risk for fraud. Our third story is the one that NO ONE asked for – smart diapers (nappies for those in the UK). We wrap...

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What’s new in Kaspersky 2020 security solutions

What’s new in Kaspersky 2020 security solutions

The fight between security vendors and cybercriminals is an endless race: after a security vendor enhances the defenses, cybercriminals find new ways to circumvent them, then these ways get blocked by security vendors – the cycle continues in a circle. That’s why good security solutions need to be constantly updated, and that means not just antivirus database updates, but also revamping the core mechanics of the antivirus as well as adding new features or improving existing ones. After all, there’s way more than just viruses to protect against.

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Our solutions are good ones – we’re not just saying that because it’s our own product. But it’s...

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Getting rid of browser notifications

Getting rid of browser notifications

You go to a website to read an interesting article, but before you can read a word, you’re pestered to subscribe to notifications. Some sites can be quite persistent, or even refuse to show content until you sign up. You duly comply, and then the onslaught really begins. In severe cases, the influx of notifications can cause the computer to freeze up. Sound familiar?

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The upside of browser push notifications is that they get you information quickly. The downside is that they are another venue for advertising. We explain how to get rid of this headache once and for all.

How to cancel a subscription to browser notifications

If you subscribed to...

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Why a disjointed work-life balance is a cybersecurity problem

Why a disjointed work-life balance is a cybersecurity problem

The lines between personal and professional are becoming increasingly blurred. People are often now spending more hours in the office than they do at home. Yet, as many as a quarter do corporate tasks outside of the office. Hints persist that the ideal work-life balance may simply not be achievable in modern society.

The lack of separation between tasks to execute at work and things to do at home could be caused by a rapid rise in the amount of digital information we all contend with. Our personal and professional lives now rely on such data stored in social media and e-mail accounts, digital documents and shared folders. Our...

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How Kaspersky’s new brand is engineered to bring on the future

How Kaspersky’s new brand is engineered to bring on the future

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As you may already have noticed, we have a new look. A radical new haircut, if you will. We trimmed the “Lab” and are now just Kaspersky.

But the new look is more than just dropping a few letters and adding a fresh coat of paint. That’s just the start. Our new mission is: Building a safer world.

That’s all of our customers’ futures: families, individuals, and businesses of all types and sizes all over the world, from the Kuril Islands to Kathmandu.

And just like the first step in any big journey, it starts at home. Here’s our founder, Eugene Kaspersky, on the idea behind our new identity.

But this post isn’t just about the...

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Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 101

Transatlantic Cable podcast, episode 101

For episode 101 of the Kaspersky Transatlantic Cable podcast, Dave and I jump from one side of the pond to the other for a number of security related topics before ending with a story completely out of the security space.

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Our first story looks at a new Facebook UK service, the result of a man winning a lawsuit against fake ads using his image. From there, we stay on the topic of Facebook and its whopping $5 billion fine from the FTC.

Our third story of the week takes a look at how people are now learning that Google employees are listening to recordings from Google Home. Following that story, we discuss how smart meters in the UK are switching to...

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