Tag Archives: america

[ISN] Hackers post private files of America’s biggest police union

www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/jan/28/fraternal-order-of-police-hacked-fbi-investigation-data-servers By Jon Swaine and George Joseph in New York The Guardian 28 January 2016 Private files belonging to America’s biggest police union, including the names and addresses of officers, forum posts critical of Barack Obama, and controversial contracts made with city authorities, were posted online Thursday after a hacker breached its website. The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), which says it represents about 330,000 law enforcement officers across the US, said the FBI was investigating after 2.5GB of data taken from its servers was dumped online and swiftly shared on social media. The union’s national site, fop.net, remained offline on Thursday evening. “We have contacted the office of the assistant attorney general in charge of cyber crime, and officials from FBI field offices have already made contact with our staff,” Chuck Canterbury, the FOP’s national president, said in an interview. The FBI did not respond to a request to confirm that it was investigating. Canterbury said he was confident that no sensitive personal information or financial details of their members had been obtained. “Some names and addresses were taken,” he said. “It concerns us. We’re taking steps to try to notify our members but that is going to take some time.” […]




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[ISN] DHS Contract Expands Anti-Hacker EINSTEIN Protection to Every Agency

www.nextgov.com/cybersecurity/2015/12/dhs-contract-expands-anti-hacker-einstein-protection-every-agency/124308/ By Aliya Sternstein Nextgov.com December 8, 2015 Internet Service Provider CenturyLink has won a multiyear contract worth up to $10.8 million dollars to fill gaps in a governmentwide firewall, according to the Department of Homeland Security. The deal was inked to complete a goal of making so-called EINSTEIN 3A network protections available to all civilian agencies by Dec. 31, a DHS official told Nextgov on Tuesday. It also conforms to a sweeping cyber shape-up plan the White House launched in October, following an Office of Personnel Management hack that exposed background check records on 21.5 million Americans applying for access to classified materials and their families. Right now, EINSTEIN 3A’s intrusion-blocking services are only offered to agencies receiving telecommunications services from CenturyLink, AT&T or Verizon. Agencies that connect to the Internet through Sprint, Level 3 or other providers are not protected. […]


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[ISN] Michaels Breach: How the Fraudsters Pulled it Off

www.bankinfosecurity.com/michaels-breach-how-fraudsters-pulled-off-a-8696 By Tracy Kitten @FraudBlogger Bank Info Security November 20, 2015 More than four years after the point-of-sale attack that struck 80 Michaels craft stores throughout the U.S., compromising nearly 100,000 payment cards, details about how the attackers pulled off their scheme have finally emerged. On Nov. 17, Crystal Banuelos of California, a lead defendant named in the 2011 Michaels debit breach, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and aggravated identity theft (see Michael’s Breach: What We’ve Learned). Banuelos’ sentencing date has not yet been set. She faces a maximum sentence of 32 years in prison and a $1 million fine. In her plea filed with a New Jersey District Court, Banuelos notes that she conspired to steal credit and debit card data, as well as PINs, from Michaels’ customers, and knowingly used counterfeit cards created from that stolen data to conduct fraudulent cash withdrawals at ATMs. In all, authorities believe Banuelos and Angel Angulo, a co-defendant named in the indictment whose case is still pending, stole $420,000 from banks through fraudulent ATM withdrawals. Banks defrauded in the scheme, according to the indictment, include U.S. Bank, BMO Harris, Bank of America, JPMorgan Case, TD Bank, Beneficial Bancorp and Wells Fargo. To perpetrate their crime, prosecutors allege Banuelos, Angulo and other unnamed conspirators swapped out 88 legitimate POS devices at 80 different Michaels locations across 19 states with manipulated terminals that were used to capture and store card data and PINs. […]


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[ISN] Ted Koppel Writes Entire Book About How Hackers Will Take Down Our Electric Grid… And Never Spoke To Any Experts

www.techdirt.com/articles/20151117/07350332835/ted-koppel-writes-entire-book-about-how-hackers-will-take-down-our-electric-grid-never-spoke-to-any-experts.shtml By Mike Masnick Techdirt.com Nov 19th 2015 Famous TV news talking head Ted Koppel recently came out with a new book called Lights Out: A Cyberattack, A Nation Unprepared, Surviving the Aftermath. The premise, as you may have guessed, is that we’re facing a huge risk that “cyberattackers” are going to take down the electric grid, and will be able to take it down for many weeks or months, and the US government isn’t remotely prepared for it. Here’s how Amazon describes the book: Investigative reporting that reads like fiction – or maybe I just wish it was fiction. In Lights Out, Ted Koppel flashes his journalism chops to introduce us to a frightening scenario, where hackers have tapped into and destroyed the United States power grids, leaving Americans crippled. Koppel outlines the many ways our government and response teams are far from prepared for an un-natural disaster that won’t just last days or weeks – but months – and also shows us how a growing number of individuals have taken it upon themselves to prepare. Whether you pick up this book to escape into a good story, or for a potentially potent look into the future, you will not be disappointed. The book also has quotes (“blurbs” as they’re called) from lots of famous people


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[ISN] Facebook’s head of security has a big concern: Android

www.businessinsider.com/facebooks-head-of-security-alex-stamos-biggest-concern-is-android-2015-11 By Rob Price Business Insider November 4, 2015 Facebook’s head of security, Alex Stamos, has a seriously high-pressure job: Keeping 1.5 billion Facebook users safe and secure every day. The American software engineer works at Facebook’s global head of security, where he is ultimately responsible for protecting its billions of users — whether that’s from opportunistic teenagers hackers in their parents’ basements, or sophisticated nation-state backed attacks. So what worries him the most? “Mobile devices.” Speaking at the Irish tech conference Web Summit on Wednesday afternoon, Stamos told CNN’s Laurie Siegel that the proliferation of cheap smartphones across the globe has made hundreds of millions of people vulnerable to hacking. […]


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[ISN] Iran said to step up cyber-attacks on US officials

www.timesofisrael.com/iran-said-to-step-up-cyber-attacks-on-us-officials/ BY TIMES OF ISRAEL STAFF November 5, 2015 Iranian regime hackers have reportedly been targeting US officials involved in formulating American policy toward Tehran. The cyber warfare unit of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, an Iranian military force separate from the main and close to the regime’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has engaged in a “flurry” of hacking efforts against the email and social-media accounts of senior officials in the Obama administration, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday. That surge has included policymakers at the US State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs and Bureau of Iranian Affairs, the report said, citing unnamed American officials. Academics and journalists linked to Iranian issues were also targeted. The timing of the hacks may be linked to the October arrest in Iran of the Iranian-American dual citizen Siamak Namazi, an advocate of normalization, and to a broader battle analysts believe is taking place within the Iranian regime over fears by hardliners close to Khamenei that the nuclear deal reached with world powers in July could herald liberalization and a warming of ties with the West. […]


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[ISN] Pentagon Farmed Out Its Coding to Russia

www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/11/04/pentagon-farmed-out-its-coding-to-russia.html By Patrick Malone Center for Public Integrity 11.04.15 The Pentagon was tipped off in 2011 by a longtime Army contractor that Russian computer programmers were helping to write computer software for sensitive U.S. military communications systems, setting in motion a four-year federal investigation that ended this week with a multimillion-dollar fine against two firms involved in the work. The contractor, John C. Kingsley, said in court documents filed in the case that he discovered the Russians’ role after he was appointed to run one of the firms in 2010. He said the software they wrote had made it possible for the Pentagon’s communications systems to be infected with viruses. Greed drove the contractor to employ the Russian programmers, he said in his March 2011 complaint, which was sealed until late last week. He said they worked for one-third the rate that American programmers with the requisite security clearances could command. His accusations were denied by the firms that did the programming work. “On at least one occasion, numerous viruses were loaded onto the DISA [Defense Information Systems Agency] network as a result of code written by the Russian programmers and installed on servers in the DISA secure system,” Kingsley said in his complaint, filed under the federal False Claims Act in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., on March 18, 2011. […]


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[ISN] Stoner high school student says he hacked the CIA

nypost.com/2015/10/18/stoner-high-school-student-says-he-hacked-the-cia/ By Philip Messing, Jamie Schram and Bruce Golding The New York Post October 18, 2015 Hillary Rodham Clinton’s e-mail scandal didn’t stop the head of the CIA from using his own personal AOL account to stash work-related documents, according to a stoner high-school student who claims to have hacked into them. CIA Director John Brennan’s private account held sensitive files — including his 47-page application for top-secret security clearance — until he recently learned that it had been infiltrated, the hacker told The Post. Other e-mails stored in Brennan’s non-government account contained the Social Security numbers and personal information of more than a dozen top American intelligence officials, as well as a government letter about the use of “harsh interrogation techniques” on terrorism suspects, according to the hacker. The FBI and other federal agencies are now investigating the hacker, with one source saying criminal charges are possible, law-enforcement sources said. […]


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