CyberWire Daily

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The daily cybersecurity news and analysis industry leaders depend on.

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Espionage by password spraying, and espionage via peanut butter sandwich. Ransomware and DDoS warnings. Two journalists get the Nobel Peace Prize

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Teheran is running password spraying attacks (especially on Thursdays and Sundays). More on the renewed popularity of DDoS attacks. NCSC warns British businesses against ransomware. Two journalists win the Nobel Peace Prize. Joe Carrigan shares his thoughts on GriftHorse. Our guest is Bindu Sundaresan from AT&T Cybersecurity football season and cyber risks. And watch out for small data cards in your peanut butter sandwiches, kids. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/196

Extra: Let's talk about Facebook's research. [Caveat]

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Our guest is author and journalist Steven Levy. He’s editor-at-large at Wired and his most recent book is "Facebook: The Inside Story. Steven offers his insights on Facebook’s internal research teams, Ben shares a newly-decided court case on whether Big Tech companies can be sued under the Anti-Terrorism statute, and Dave's got the story of some warrantless surveillance being declared unconstitutional in Colorado.  While this show covers legal topics, and Ben is a lawyer, the views expressed do not constitute legal advice. For official legal advice on any of the topics we cover, please contact your attorney.  Links to stories: Federal appeals court clears social media companies in Pulse shooting lawsuit Colorado Supreme Court Rules Three Months of Warrantless Video Surveillance Violates the Constitution Got a question you'd like us to answer on our show? You can send your audio file to caveat@thecyberwire.com or simply leave us a message at (410) 618-3720. Hope to hear from you.

Brandon Karpf: A sailor of the 21st century. [Transitioning service member] [Career Notes]

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Lieutenant in the US Navy and Skillbridge Fellow at the CyberWire, Brandon Karpf, knew he wanted to join the military at a young age. He achieved that through the US Naval Academy where he was a member of the men's heavyweight rowing team. Commissioning into the cryptologic field as a naval cryptologic warfare officer, Brandon was sent to MIT for a graduate degree where he experienced the exact opposite end of the spectrum from USNA's structured life. Brandon's work with both NSA and US Cyber Command helped him gain experience and cyber operations skills. As he is transitions from active duty to civilian life, Brandon shares the difficulties that process brings about. Through Skillbridge Fellowship program, Brandon's transition has him sharing his skills with the CyberWire. We thank Brandon for sharing his skills and his story with us.

Taking a closer look at UNC1151. [Research Saturday]

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Matt Stafford, Senior Threat Intelligence Researcher, from Prevailion joins Dave to talk about their work on "Diving Deep into UNC1151’s Infrastructure: Ghostwriter and beyond." Prevailion’s Adversarial Counterintelligence Team (PACT) used advanced infrastructure hunting techniques and Prevailion’s visibility into threat actor infrastructure creation to uncover previously unknown domains associated with UNC1151 and the “Ghostwriter” influence campaign. UNC1151 is likely a state-backed threat actor waging an ongoing and far-reaching influence campaign that has targeted numerous countries across Europe. Their operations typically display messaging in general alignment with the security interests of the Russian Federation; their hallmarks include anti-NATO messaging, intimate knowledge of regional culture and politics, and strategic influence operations (such as hack-and-leak operations used in conjunction with fabricated messaging and/or forged documents). PACT assesses with varying degrees of confidence that there are 81 additional, unreported domains clustered with the activity that FireEye and ThreatConnect detailed in their respective reports. PACT also assesses with High Confidence that UNC1151 has targeted additional European entities outside of the Baltics, Poland, Ukraine and Germany, for which no previous public reporting exists. The research can be found here: Diving Deep into UNC1151’s Infrastructure: Ghostwriter and beyond

Fancy Bear’s snuffling at Gmail credentials. FIN12’s threat to healthcare, and BlackMatter’s threat to agriculture. REvil tries to reestablish itself in the underworld. Twitch update. Sachkov is charged.

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Google warns fourteen-thousand Gmail users that Fancy Bear has probably been after their passwords. FIN12, a fast-running ransomware group, is after hospitals’ and healthcare providers’ money. BlackMatter remains active against the agriculture sector. REvil is back and talking on the RAMP forum, but so far it’s getting a chilly reception. Twitch traces its vulnerability to a server misconfiguration. David Dufour from webroot wonders about cracking down on crypto. Our guest is Jeff Dileo of NCC on mastering container security. And Group-IB’s CEO is charged with treason. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/195

Espionage, mostly cyber but also physical. DDoS in the Philippines. TSA regulations for rail and airline cybersecurity are coming. US DoJ promises civil action for cyber failures. Twitch update. And NFTs.

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Cyberespionage seems undeterred by stern warnings. DDoS hits the Philippine Senate. The US Department of Homeland Security intends to issue cybersecurity regulations for passenger rail and airlines. The US Department of Justice intends to use the False Claims Act to bring civil actions against government contractors who fail to follow “recognized cybersecurity standards.” An update on the Twitch breach. Josh Ray from Accenture looks at what’s going on with Fancy Lazarus. Our guest is Sam Ingalls from eSecurity Planet on the state of Blockchain applications in cybersecurity. And what would it take to get you kids into a nice non-fungible token? For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/194

Twitch is breached. MalKamak: a newly described Iranian threat actor. Chinese cyberespionage against India. SafeMoon phishbait. The ransomware threat. What counts as compromise.

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Twitch is breached. A newly discovered Iranian threat group is described. A Chinese cyberespionage campaign in India proceeds by phishing. SafeMoon alt-coin is trendy phishbait in criminal circles. As the US prepares to convene an anti-ransomware conference, Russian gangs show no signs of slacking off. Betsy Carmelite from BAH on AI/ ML in cyber defensive operations. Our guest is Adam Flatley of Redacted with recommendations from the Ransomware Task Force. And observations on what counts as compromising material. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/193

Facebook’s back up, and the outage was due to an error, not an attack. A look at AvosLocker and Atom Silo ransomware. The case of the Kyiv ransomware gangsters. Thoughts on the Pandora Papers.

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Facebook restores service after dealing with an accidental BGP configuration issue. There’s now a data auction site for AvosLocker ransomware. Atom Silo ransomware is quiet, patient, and stealthy. The state of investigation into those two guys collared on a ransomware beef in Kyiv last week. Ben Yelin is skeptical of data privacy poll results. Our guest is Microsoft’s Ann Johnson, host of the newest show to join the CyberWire network, Afternoon Cyber Tea. And what would they have thought of the Pandora Papers in Deadwood, back in the day? For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/192

Privacy and the Pandora Papers. Flubot’s scare tactics. Exploiting an account recovery system. Conti warns victims not to talk to the press. An international meeting on cybercrime? A ransomware bust.

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The Pandora Papers leak erstwhile private financial transactions by the rich and well-connected (and it’s 150 mainstream news organizations who cooperated in bringing them to light). Flubot is using itself to scare victims into installing Flubot. Coinbase thieves exploited account recovery systems to obtain 2FA credentials. The US plans to convene an international conference on fighting cybercrime. Conti warns its victims not to talk to reporters. Andrea Little Limbago from Interos on modeling cyber risk. Carole Theriault has thoughts on facial recognition software. And a ransomware bust in Ukraine leads us to ask, why Capri Sun. (Think about it, kids.) For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/191

Pattie Dillon: Take the leap. [Anti-fraud] [Career Notes]

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Product Manager in Anti-Fraud Solutions at SpyCloud, Pattie Dillon shares her journey from raising her family to specializing in the anti-fraud space. Upon reentering the workforce, Pattie worked on identity verification and developed a system with privacy concerns in mind. She moved to work in gift cards and was exposed to money laundering. Traveling along the fraud spectrum, Pattie learned about underground data and feels that this data can be leveraged to actually prevent and fight online fraud. Pattie believes if you don't try, you'll never know. We know we appreciate Pattie sharing her story with us.

Cloud configuration security: Breaking the endless cycle. [CyberWire-X]

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Moving to the cloud creates a tremendous opportunity to get security right and reduce the risk of data breach. But most cloud security initiatives get underway after services are deployed in the cloud. It’s frustrating when major breaches resulting from basic mistakes, like S3 buckets left unsecured or secrets exposed. Continually checking for risky configurations and unusual behavior in cloud logs is a requirement, but there is an opportunity to be proactive. What if you could configure your security and access controls as you set up cloud infrastructure? The CyberWire's Rick Howard speaks with Hash Table members Kevin Ford of North Dakota State government and Steve Winterfeld of Akamai, as well as sponsor Sysdig's Omer Azaria to discuss how security teams are adopting Infrastructure as Code (IaC) security as part of their overall cloud security strategy to reduce risk.

IoT security and the need for randomness. [Research Saturday]

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Dan Petro, Lead Researcher, and Allan Cecil, Security Consultant, from Bishop Fox join Dave to share their research "You're Doing IoT RNG," that they presented at DefCon 29. There’s a crack in the foundation of Internet of Things (IoT) security, one that affects 35 billion devices worldwide. Basically, every IoT device with a hardware random number generator (RNG) contains a serious vulnerability whereby it fails to properly generate random numbers, which undermines security for any upstream use. In order to perform most security-relevant operations, computers need to generate secrets via an RNG. These secrets then form the basis of cryptography, access controls, authentication, and more. The details of exactly how and why these secrets are generated varies for each use. The research can be found here: You're Doing IoT RNG

Phishing for those who fear Pegasus. ChamelGang APT active against multiple countries. Problems with a ransomware decryptor. Controversial proofs-of-concept. And a death blamed on ransomware.

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A malware campaign offers bogus protection against Pegasus surveillance. A new APT, ChamelGang, is found active against targets in at least ten countries. A ransomware gang can’t get its decryptor right. A proof-of-concept shows that charges can be made from a non-contact Visa card in an iPhone wallet. David Dufour from Webroot warns of potential perils in cyber insurance. Our guest is Shamla Naidoo from Netskope with advice for cyber innovators .And ransomware may be responsible for a child’s death in an Alabama hospital. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/190

GriftHorse’s premium service scams. Facebook open sources a static analysis tool. Update on the Group-IB affair. What the Familiar Four are up to. Counting ransomware strains.

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GriftHorse will subscribe afflicted Android users to premium services they never knew they’d signed up for (and wouldn’t want if they did). Facebook releases a static analysis tool it uses internally to check apps for security issues. Speculation about what put Group-IB’s CEO in hot water with the Kremlin. A look from NSA about where the major nation-state cyberthreats currently stand. Malek Ben Salem from Accenture has thoughts on quantum security. Our guest is author and Wired editor at large Steven Levy joins us with insights on Facebook’s internal research teams. And a short census of ransomware strains. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/189

DDoS is on an upward trend, and it’s being used for extortion. A payroll provider recovers from an unspecified cyberattack. Russia charges Group-IB CEO with treason. NSA, CISA, advise on using VPNs.

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Distributed denial-of-service attacks have been making a comeback, and many of them represent criminal extortion attempts. A major British payroll provider is recovering from a cyberattack, but it’s not providing much information on the nature of that attack. Russian authorities arrest the founder of Group-IB on treason charges. Johannes Ullrich from SANS on Out of Band Phishing Using SMS messages. Our UK correspondent Carole Theriault wonders how online trolling is still a thing. And NSA and CISA release guidelines on secure use of virtual private networks. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/188

Homecomings, happy and not so happy. A backdoor for espionage, a Trojan for cybercrime. DDoS techniques, those iPhone zero-days, and indictments. And one guilty plea.

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The triumphant homecoming of Huawei’s CFO. Microsoft describes the FoggyWeb backdoor, a significant cyberespionage tool. Kaspersky looks at the BloodyStealer Trojan and finds it especially risky to gamers. A novel approach to distributed denial-of-service. Apple looks into those iPhone zero-days. Joe Carrigan looks at the latest offerings in passwordless authentication. Our guest is Mathieu Gorge of VigiTrust on how law enforcement and executives can work together to fight cyber threats. And a look at doings in cybercrime: the US arrests more than thirty members of the Black Axe gang, a Russian convict is deported back to face Russian justice, and a blockchain maven pleads guilty to helping Pyongyang. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/187

The EU ask Russia to knock it off, and specifically to stop with the GhostWriter. Zoombombing in Cambodia. Conti is back; Colossus is a new entrant in the ransomware field. Meng returns to China.

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The EU publicly blames Russia for GhostWriter, and counsels Moscow to amend its ways. Finland’s security services warn of foreign cyberespionage and influence threats. Zoombombing at the highest levels in Cambodia. A ransomware operation, “Colossus,” is described. Conti is back, as predicted, and has hit a major European call center. Dinah Davis from Arctic Wolf on cybersecurity learning standards. Our guest is Otavio Freire from SafeGuard Cyber with insights on how to defend against nation-state actors and zero-day exploits. And Huawei’s CFO is back in China. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/186

Dave Bittner: From puppet shows to podcasts. [Media] [Career Notes]

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Host of the CyberWire Podcast, Dave Bittner, wanted to work with the Muppets, so naturally he landed in cybersecurity. Dave and his Cookie Monster puppet spent much of his childhood putting on shows for his parents friends. During one of those performances, he was discovered and got his start at the local PBS station. A radio, television and film major in college, Dave owned his own company and as the most tech-savvy member of the group, handled that side of things. Dave notes his cybersecurity challenges back then consisted of maybe a corrupt floppy disk. It wasn't until he joined the CyberWIre that cybersecurity became Dave's focus. A former boss showed him how to lead a team and treat everyone with kindness regardless of their role. We thank Dave for sharing his story with us.

Why it’s time for cybersecurity to go mainstream. [CyberWire-X]

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The commonly held, idealized picture of technology is that tech makes our lives easier, safer, and better in just about every respect. But an unintended consequence of that picture is an unjustified assumption that companies will sell more products if they serve the public interest, and that may not be so. On the consumer side, personal technology investments are often a race to the price bottom, with little attention paid to the security of the products we buy. Vendors may enjoy less scrutiny and accountability, but that's not necessarily in the consumers' interest. Good things almost always come when technology steps out of the shadows and into the light of the mainstream. It’s time that happened in cybersecurity, where everyone, from suppliers to consumers, has a role to play. In this episode of CyberWire-X, knowledgeable representatives across that spectrum to learn what they have to say about risk, accountability, and, above all, transparency. Guest Dr. Georgianna Shea from the Foundation for Defense of Democracies shares her insights with the CyberWire's Rick Howard, and Sponsor Tanium's CISO for the Americas Chris Hallenbeck joins the CyberWire's Dave Bittner to discuss achievable steps the government, private sector, and the broader public can take to start moving the needle on cybersecurity.

Vulnerabilities in the public cloud. [Research Saturday]

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Guest Ariel Zelivansky, Senior Manager of Security Research at Palo Alto Networks, joins Dave to discuss Unit 42's work on the first cross-account container takeover in the public cloud. The Unit 42 Threat Intelligence team has identified the first known vulnerability that could enable one user of a public cloud service to break out of their environment and execute code on environments belonging to other users in the same public cloud service. This unprecedented cross-account takeover affected Microsoft's Azure Container-as-a-Service (CaaS) platform. Researchers named the finding Azurescape because the attack started from a container escape – a technique that enables privilege escalation out of container environments. The research can be found here: What You Need to Know About Azurescape Finding Azurescape – Cross-Account Container Takeover in Azure Container Instances Note: Microsoft is a sponsor of the CyberWire, however, we cover them as we would any other company.

Cyberattacks against a Russian rocket shop and the Port of Houston. As ransomware gangs increase activity, the US considers defenses. Pegasus found in French Ministers’ phones. Meng heads home?

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Someone is phishing for Russian rocketeers. The Port of Houston discloses a cyberattack, which the Port says it deflected before it had operational consequences. Ransomware gangs are up and active, and the US is considering mandatory reporting by victims as a defensive policy. Pegasus spyware is said to have been found in the phones of five French government ministers. Johannes Ullrich from the SANS Technology Institute on Attackers Hunting for Environment Variables. Our guest is Graeme Bunton of DNS Abuse Institute. And Huawei’s Meng Wanzhou may soon be headed home from Vancouver. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/185

Ransomware hits another US farm co-op, as Russan gangs seem to continue attacks without interference from Moscow. A new APT is described. REvil was cheating? CISA warns about Conti.

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Ransomware hits a second US Midwestern farm co-op. The US House hears from the FBI that Russia seems not to have modified its toleration of privateering gangs (at least yet). A new APT, “FamousSparrow,” is described. REvil seems to have been--surprise!--cheating its criminal affiliates. Josh Ray from Accenture with an update on the Hades Threat Group. Our guest is Tim Eades of vArmour on the urgent need to update cyber strategies in healthcare. CISA issues a new warning, this one on the Conti ransomware operation.  For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/184

Ransomware is rising, and governments try to evolve an effective response. A look at the cyber underworld. Snooping smartphones. An advance fee scam is criminal business as usual.

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BlackMatter continues to make a nuisance of itself on a large scale. The US is woofing about taking action against ransomware, and Treasury has sanctioned a rogue cryptocurrency exchange, but some advocate stronger measures. Where did all those Ukrainian cybercriminal chat platforms go? A warning of the “censor mode” in some Chinese manufactured smartphones. Caleb Barlow shares thoughts on CMMC certification. Our guest is Kevin Jones of Virsec with reactions to the White House Cybersecurity Summit. And, hey, no, really, Apple is not celebrating the iPhone 13 by giving away a stash of Bitcoin. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/183

BlackMatter hits an Iowa agricultural cooperative. US Treasury Department moves against ransomware’s support system. FBI gave Kaseya the REvil decryptor. Camorra cybercriminals arrested.

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Ransomware hits an Iowa agricultural cooperative, which doesn’t meet, the criminals say, the standard for “critical infrastructure.” US Treasury Department announces steps against ransomware’s economic support system. Did Kaseya get its REvil decryptor from the FBI? Ben Yelin describes a major federal court victory for security researchers. Our guest is Dave Stapleton from CyberGRX on the rise of extortionware. And Europol, along with Spanish and Italian police, take down a Camorra cybercrime ring. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/182

Electioneering, domestic, but with international implications. The Mirai botnet is exploiting OMIGOD. Container shipper sustains data breach. Odd ads. Phishing with Mr. Musk’s name.

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Cyber electioneering, in Hungary and Russia, the latter with some international implications. The Mirai botnet is exploiting the OMIGOD vulnerability. A shipping company deals with data extortion. Government websites have been serving up some oddly adult-themed ads. Malek Ben Salem from Accenture has thoughts on quantum security. Our guest is Padraic O'Reilly of CyberSaint to discuss concerns about the Defense Industrial Base. And no, there’s no such thing as the Elon Musk Mutual Aid Society. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/181

Limor Kessem: Be an upstander. [Security Advisor] [Career Notes]

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Executive Security Advisor at IBM Security Limor Kessem says she started her cybersecurity career by pure chance. Limor made a change from her childhood dream of being a doctor and came into cybersecurity with her passion, investment, discipline, and perseverance. Limor talks about how we must tighten our core security and at the same time we allow innovation to help us move forward with the times. She's been fortunate to have been able to stand up for others and has had others support her. She said that is very motivating and has allowed her to really explore every possible thing in her career that she can contribute without limiting herself to a certain role. We thank Limor for sharing her story with us.

An IoT educational exercise reveals a far-reaching vulnerability. [Research Saturday]

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Guest Jake Valletta, Director of Professional Services at Mandiant, joins Dave to talk about the critical vulnerability Mandiant disclosed that affects millions of IoT devices. Mandiant disclosed a critical risk vulnerability in coordination with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (“CISA”) that affects millions of IoT devices that use the ThroughTek “Kalay” network. This vulnerability, discovered by researchers on Mandiant’s Red Team in late 2020, would enable adversaries to remotely compromise victim IoT devices, resulting in the ability to listen to live audio, watch real time video data, and compromise device credentials for further attacks based on exposed device functionality. These further attacks could include actions that would allow an adversary to remotely control affected devices. The research can be found here: Mandiant Discloses Critical Vulnerability Affecting Millions of IoT Devices

Patch that password manager. The hidden hand of the troll farm. Election meddling. Coin-mining’s costs, and a crackdown in China. If you really loved me, you’d speculate in Dogecoin....or something.

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Patch your Zoho software now--vulnerable instances are being actively exploited. Maximum engagement isn’t necessarily good engagement: the hidden hand of the trolls replaces the invisible hand of the marketplace of ideas. Politics ain’t beanbag, Russian edition. An indictment emerges from the US investigation into possible misconduct during the 2016 elections. The costs of coin-mining. Josh Ray from Accenture on protecting critical infrastructure. Our guest is Tony Pepper from Egress with a look at Insider Data Breaches. And don’t mix investment advice with matters of the heart. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/180

A CSO's 9/11 Story: CSO Perspectives Bonus.

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For the 20th anniversary of 9/11, Rick Howard, the Cyberwire’s CSO, Chief Analyst, and Senior Fellow, recounts his experience from inside the Pentagon running the communications systems for the Army Operations Center.

Election-season cyber incidents in Germany. South Africa works to recover from a ransomware attack on government networks. Cryptojacking botnet moves to Windows targets. Ransomware notes.

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Denial-of-service at a German election agency, as Federal prosecutors investigate GhostWriter. More nation-states get into election meddling. South Africa works to recover from a ransomware attack against government networks. A cryptojacking botnet moves from Linux to Windows. A ransomware gang threatens to burn your data if you bring in third-party help. Ransomware cyberinsurance claims rise. Rick Howard checks in with Tom Ayres from Lead Up Strategies on Cyber Piracy. Caleb Barlow shares insights on CMMC. And it’s a really good week to patch. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/179

No crackdown on ransomware from Moscow (at least so far). Cyber Partisans in Belarus. A long-running Chinese cyber campaign. Phishing and other cybercrime. Mercenaries.

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That Russian crackdown on ransomware gangs people thought they were seeing? Hasn’t happened, at least according to the FBI. The Cyber Partisans take a virtual whack at President Lukashenka’s government in Belarus. Operation Harvest is complicated and long-running. Phishing with a promise of infrastructure funding. The criminal market for bogus vaccine cards. Johannes Ullrich from SANS on dealing with image uploads - vulnerabilities in conversion libraries. Our UK correspondent Carole Theriault on Deepfakes - what you need to know now. And a deferred prosecution agreement in a “cyber mercenary” case. For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/178

NSO Group’s Pegasus was installed in a zero-click exploit: iOS users should patch. Vermillion Strike hits Linux systems. Enforcing the law against cybercrime.

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Citizen Lab finds, and Apple patches, a zero-day used for zero-click installation of Pegasus spyware. A Cobalt Strike beacon has been turned to cyberespionage use against Linux targets. The Russian government could, it seems, take action against cybercrime, but its will-to-enforcement seems to be inconsistent. Ben Yelin from UMD CHHS with more on Apple's CSAM controversy, our guest is Mel Shakir from Dreamit Ventures on selling to CISOs, and their customer sprints. REvil makes nice with grumpy affiliates. And criminals’ commitment to the common good seems weak. That’s not a surprise, is it? For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/177

The continuing problem of Meris and its bot-driven DDoS. Mustang Panda visits Indonesia. DPRK’s social media battlespace prep. Al Qaeda marks 9/11’s anniversary. And REvil seems to be back.

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The Meris botnet continues to disrupt New Zealand banks, and has turned up elsewhere, too. Mustang Panda compromised Indonesian government networks. North Korean operators are using social media to soften up their prospective targets. Al Qaeda sympathizers marked the twentieth anniversary of 9/11 by calling for--what else?--more 9/11s. Malek Ben Salem from Accenture on deep unlearning, our own Rick Howard is in, talking about the latest episode of CSO Perspectives on adversary playbooks, and REvil seems to be back in business after taking what some of its hoods call “a break.” For links to all of today's stories check out our CyberWire daily news briefing: https://www.thecyberwire.com/newsletters/daily-briefing/10/176

Joe Bradley: A bit of a winding road. [Chief Scientist] [Career Notes]

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Chief Scientist at LivePerson Joe Bradley takes us down his circuitous career journey that led him back to math. Joe had many ambitions from opera singer to middle school teacher, spent some time at two national labs and went back to his first love of math and physics. He notes that many of the most mathematically intuitive people that he's met are people that also have a creative outlet and a lot of times it's music. Adding a business aspect to his technical work, Joe came to his current position. He recommends going deep into your preferred subject and hopes that it helps you to become something different because of all you put into the work. We thank Joe for sharing his story with us.

A Google Chrome update that just didn't feel right. [Research Saturday]

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Guest Jon Hencinski from Expel joins Dave Bittner to discuss his team's recent work on "Expel SOC Stops Ransomware Attack Aimed at WordPress CMS via Drive-By Download Disguised as Google Chrome Update." In July, 2021, Expel's SOC stopped a ransomware attack at a large software and staffing company. The attackers compromised the company’s WordPress CMS and used the SocGholish framework to trigger a drive-by download of a Remote Access Tool (RAT) disguised as a Google Chrome update. In total, four hosts downloaded a malicious Zipped JScript file that was configured to deploy a RAT, but we were able to stop the attack before ransomware deployment and help the organization remediate its WordPress CMS. Jons walk us through what happened, how they caught it, and provide recommendations on how to secure your WordPress CMS.  The research can be found here: Expel SOC Stops Ransomware Attack Aimed at WordPress CMS via Drive-By Download Disguised as Google Chrome Update