In 2004 phishing was officially recognized as a global, industrial-scale problem. Since then it has become even more entrenched with scammers all over the world, from the Ukraine and India, to the US and Belgium, adopting it. But today, it is also mutating into spear phishing, precise attacks aimed at specific and lucrative targets.
The Western World is rapidly moving towards mobile computing; it’s fast, easy and powerful and in most cases can enable the same, and higher, levels of computing as desktop PCs and laptops. As a result, phablets, a hybrid smartphone and tablet are becoming increasingly popular with analysts predicting that their growth will eventually outstrip that of tablets and traditional smartphones. They are serious devices, but they also need serious protection.
For most people talk of computer code elicits an almighty yawn, it’s the realm of geeks. But code bugs are responsible for some terrible events and even the innocuous, ubiquitous and irrepressibly popular emojis have been recently been exposed as potential carriers of bad things.
Bitstamp, a trusted bitcoin exchange, has been hacked to the tune of over £3 million. ‘Don’t worry,’ says the company, it’s only a fraction of what it holds in its reserves. It’s also the latest in a long line of bitcoin hacks.
Another bitcoin exchange has been hacked with the theft of about £3.4 million in virtual currency. This time it was Bitstamp, one of the largest and most trusted of bitcoin exchanges.
You’ve probably heard of zero-day exploits but might not know what exactly it means. It’s a type of virus that is extremely dangerous, and relatively common. Traditional antivirus detection doesn’t halt zero-day exploits however, they can be stopped. And intriguingly, governments around the world from North Korea to the US pay a lot of money for information on zero-day discoveries – so they can turn them against others.
Such as been the far reaching influence of technology that today a measure of success is the technology we use whether it’s the latest smartphone or a device with supercomputing power. That said, the rapid pace of change that follows technology advancements means we are also more open to cyber mishaps and hacks that can have a huge impact on our lives, and in the most extreme cases bring life itself it to a juddering halt.
Amid the gossip, fury and diplomatic activity over the Sony hack a few important points have been overlooked; thousands of employees had their personal information posted online proving that many organisations can’t be trusted to provide security and cyber actions by nation states are here to stay accompanied by ever louder cries of denial.
The 24 hour sales frenzy is almost upon us. It’s a great time to scoop up some bargains – especially online. However, be wary, cyber criminals come crawling out of the digital ether at this time while many retailers can be extremely disingenuous with their pricing so the apparent bargain may not be all it’s billed as. However, you can avoid the pitfalls by being armed with a simple bit of knowledge, and in the process and scoop up your own bargain.
As internet usage has grown, phishing scams have exploded. It’s easy to see why. A scammer only needs to get a relatively small number of hits to make a success of the scam. That said, many people are now savvy to phishing but as a result phishing sophistication is evolving. Here’s what to watch out for to make sure you’re not taken in.
.exe attachments are a favourite tool for cyber villains to download malware onto your computer. That said they’re easy to identify and safeguard against if you know what you’re looking for. But hackers take it as a given that most people don’t know how to identify different file types hence the continued popularity of .exe attachments to hide malware.
One of the most common tricks used by hackers is to get unsuspecting users to click on a malicious .exe file which leads to malware being downloaded onto a computer. They’re usually sent to you as an email attachment with the email offering some form of compelling inducement to get you to open the attachment.