Crystal Ball Gazing for 2017

This is the time of the year everyone writes either a year in review article, or a what’s coming in the new year post.  Guess which one this is?  I’ve been reading the pundits, and considering my own findings as a cybersecurity professional.  I pulled together the following list for your review, and to help you plan where to spend your time, talent, and budget in 2017.

  • Continued issues with crypto-ransomware in 2017 ...
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The Russians Are Coming!

Cybersecurity professionals are in agreement.  The Russians appear to have been actively engaged in influencing the outcome of our recent Presidential election.  Specifics include compromising and taking over Hilary Clinton’s chief of staff, John Podesta’s personal Gmail account.  This spear phishing exploit used a “near-miss” domain name of “accounts.googlemail.com”  to trick John into clicking on a link and and entering his email credentials.  The real domain name is accounts.google.com.

There was also a ...

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How Bogus Lottery Scams Work

The FBI recently reported on arrests of a number of lottery scammers in what they call “Operation Hard Copy.”  We do like to report when cyber-criminals are arrested, prosecuted, and jailed, because it shows that stopping cyber-crime is not impossible.  But it is almost always a multi-national, multi-jurisdictional undertaking that requires the cooperative efforts of law enforcement from several countries.

What I found most interesting was the way that this scam ...

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Should I Report My Cyber-Crime To the Cops?

ic3If you have been the victim of a ransomware scam, or fake tech support scam, or other computer incident, intrusion, or breach, you may be wondering if you should report it to the police.

If you report your crime to the police, it is unlikely that it is going to be solved and the perpetrator arrested.  Many local police departments have a computer fraud officer or even a larger group, but there may ...

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Retailing Hall of Shame – Office Depot Tech Support Scam

office-depotIt was recently reported in Naked Security that a Seattle television news crew interviewed an Office Depot employee who alerted them to the practice of selling in-store repair scams to customers who came in looking for computer help.  This whistle-blower told a story where employees where encouraged and even pressured to run the chain’s “PC Health Check” on evey computer ...

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Cybersecurity Top 10

cybersecurity_436x270As we approach year-end, many small and medium sized business owners and managers are coming to the realization that their best intentions for creating a cybersecurity program in their organization have fallen short.  This was the year, you promised yourself, that we get a handle on computer and network security.

Well it is not too late to get a start, and here is a short ...

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Fixing Your Infected IoT Devices

mirai-botnetThe Mirai and Bashlight botnets have caused quite a stir in the cybersecurity and IT realms.  The easy ability to round up and deploy millions of devices in a botnet using automated tools has raised the bar.  How we respond to DDoS attacks will have to change.

Nevertheless, you can remove your IoT devices from the bot-net and keep them from being reacquired.  Here are some easy solutions:

First, as clever as these exploits ...

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Call Center in India Busted for IRS Collection Fraud

irs-logoNaked Security recently reported on the raid on a call center outside of Mumbai India that was engaged in defrauding US taxpayers of over $15 million dollars by pretending to be IRS collection agents.  70 people were arrested and over 600 call center operators remain under investigation.  While this is good news, this scam was very successful and is likely to pop up again.  We are reporting on it here ...

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Sunday Funnies – Vote Early, Vote Often

Tuesday we get to vote for president again.  Worried about the security of electronic voting machines?  You are not alone, but you would not find any political or election officials in your group.  They think everything is fine!  The fact that your next president may be elected by the Russian Cyber Army is OK, I guess.  So that means Trump.

Here’s a little humor to make the nightmare seems more acceptable.

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Notes from the Cyber Security Summit 2016

cyber-security-summit-2016A couple of weeks ago I attended the Minneapolis Cyber Security Summit 2016 at the J.W. Marriot Hotel in Bloomington Minnesota.  There were two days of presentations on cybersecurity issues, and here are a few of the takeaways for small and medium sized business owners.

  • There are 28 million small businesses in the United States.  The Small Business Administration classifies a business with fewer than 500 employees as a small business.
  • Small businesses account ...
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