Scary Notes From the Cyber Security Summit for Halloween

cyber-security-summit-2016Hey, when I spend several hundred dollars and two days of my time to attend a cybersecurity conference, a guy like me hopes he can milk a few blog articles out of it.  Here is the third (so far.)

Most of these nuggets came from a keynote titled “2016 Cyber Attacks By The Numbers” presented by Kevin Thompson, a former CIA analyst and now a threat analysis for the cybersecurity firm FireEye.  Very eye-opening.

Primary Attack Vectors

  • Spearphishing with weaponized exploits.
    • Microsoft Office VB macro enabled attachments.
    • Tuesday and Wednesday are the top days for phishing campaigns.
  • Strategic web compromises.
    • Conferencing websites such as TeamViewer, WebEx, JoinMe, and GoToMeeting
    • Outsource IT companies – for spoofed phishing emails
    • Outsource HR companies – everybody clicks on the link in an ADP email.  Go to a fake website, fill in a bunch of personal information.
  • Fake log-in pop-ups
    • VPN log-in screens faked – “your session has disconnected, please enter your user ID and password to resume.”
    • Outlook Web Access faked log-ins to capture your email credentials
    • The use of Emergency Access Tokens with a long or no expiration date
  • Compromised computer systems
    • 50% of compromises use malware.
    • 50% of compromises simply use captured user credentials that are valid on the network.

On Wednesday we will reveal the rest of the attack vectors that Kevin shared with us.


About the Author:

I am a cybersecurity and IT instructor, cybersecurity analyst, pen-tester, trainer, and speaker. I am an owner of the WyzCo Group Inc. In addition to consulting on security products and services, I also conduct security audits, compliance audits, vulnerability assessments and penetration tests. I also teach Cybersecurity Awareness Training classes. I work as an information technology and cybersecurity instructor for several training and certification organizations. I have worked in corporate, military, government, and workforce development training environments I am a frequent speaker at professional conferences such as the Minnesota Bloggers Conference, Secure360 Security Conference in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, the (ISC)2 World Congress 2016, and the ISSA International Conference 2017, and many local community organizations, including Chambers of Commerce, SCORE, and several school districts. I have been blogging on cybersecurity since 2006 at

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