The Week in Breach

spearphishing

Russian Dark Web
A reporter from The Guardian recently dove into a popular Russian Dark Web hacking forum known as FreeHacks, which aims to maximize efficiency in the attacks of its members and to disperse information on ‘quality’ hacking. On the surface it looks like any other forum, and (in essence) it is, with a twisted turn provided by the malicious nature of the subject matter. The categories of the forum are split into a wide variety of specific types of hacking and some ‘lifestyle’ forums as well.

Hacker news, humor, botnet, DDoS, programming, web development, malware and exploits, and security are examples of some of the topics discussed on the site. Some of the markets on the site include stolen credit cards, password cracking software, a clothing market to launder money, and a document market where members can buy passports and citizenships. The forum has about 5,000 active members and claims that a hacker is not a ‘computer burglar’ but rather ‘someone who likes to program and enjoy it.” Given the kind of information and marketplaces available on the site, this seems more like mental gymnastics rather than a nuanced examination of one’s own criminality. After passing the registration to get into the site, the reporter found step-by-step directions for finding someone’s physical address, among other nefarious ways to penetrate companies’ networks or to extort individuals.
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/24/darknet-dark-web-hacking-forum-internet-safety

Gamer Recognize Game
The website for Kaiser Permanente was hijacked this week by hackers, defacing the site to include a variety of Game of Thrones quotes, which is a popular book series turned TV show. The American integrated care consortium based in Oakland, California had their pictures of happy healthy families on their front page replaced with a black screen and a declaration that a hacking group known as the faceless men was responsible for the act. The hacking group appears to be somewhat amateur in nature, and Turkish in origin. An investigation into the group’s members reveals that a few of the hackers listed are active Turkish gamers, which raises the question about how an organization that handles sensitive medical information was able to be hacked by a group of Turkish gamers with very little hacking experience. It is unclear whether any personal information has been accessed in the hack … the organization has declined to comment as of the writing of this Week in Breach.
https://www.databreaches.net/hear-me-roar-kaiser-permanente-site-defaced-by-got-fans/

Security > Convenience
More customers value security over convenience than professionals in the UK, according to a new study. 83% of customers prefer security, compared to only 60% of cybersecurity professionals. The study explores the reason for the disparity in the concern, citing organizations desire for frictionless customer experience as a reason for not having tight security. This could contribute to the UK scoring an unimpressive 56 out of 100 points on the Digital Trust Index which is one of the lowest in the world and 5 points lower than the global average. This disconnect is likely to continue in the future considering 88% of UK executives believe they are doing a good job protecting consumer data while over half of their organizations have been breached in the past year.
https://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/uk-consumers-prefer-security-to/

Hacking from The Inside
Across 5 different correctional facilities in Idaho, hundreds of inmates were able to add thousands of dollars’ worth of credits to their JPay accounts, which allows inmates to buy music or send emails. Over 300 inmates were able to exploit a vulnerability in the JPay system to add $224,772 across the group. One of those involved managed to gain nearly $10,000 using the exploit. Those who hacked their JPay accounts are being punished, and the vulnerability is being fixed, but this raises questions about the security of programs used by the U.S. prison system.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/27/us/idaho-prison-hack-jpay-nyt.html

Podcasts:
IT Provider Network – The Podcast for Growing IT Service
Know Tech Talks – Hosted by Barb Paluszkiewicz
The Continuum Podcast
Security Now – Hosted by Steve Gibson, Leo Laporte
Defensive Security Podcast – Hosted by Jerry Bell (@maliciouslink) and Andrew Kalat (@lerg)
Small Business, Big Marketing – Australia’s #1 Marketing Show!


United States – Reddit
Exploit: SMS intercept.
Risk to Small Business: High: Could have damaging effects on the trust of clients, as well as highlighting the vulnerabilities of SMS 2FA.
Individual Risk: Moderate: The nature of the data is not particularly harmful due to the age and the scope but affected users could be at risk for spam.
Reddit: Extremely popular forum, one of the 5 most popular sites on the internet.
Date Occurred/Discovered: June 14 – 18, 2018
Date Disclosed: August 1, 2018
Data Compromised:

• Old Reddit user data (before May 2007)
• Usernames
• Salted hashed passwords
• Email addresses
• Public content
• Private messages
• Email digests
Customers Impacted: Users with accounts made before 2007, subscribers to email digests between June 3 and June 17, 2018.
https://www.reddit.com/r/announcements/comments/93qnm5/we_had_a_security_incident_heres_what_you_need_to/

United States – UnityPoint Health
Exploit: Phishing.
Risk to Small Business: High: A huge breach of customer trust, also this organization will be fined heavily because medical data was breached.
Individual Risk: High: The content breached is valuable on the Dark Web and is vital in identity theft.
UnityPoint Health: Multi hospital group operating in Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin.
Date Occurred/Discovered: March 14 – April 3, 2018
Date Disclosed: July 31, 2018
Data Compromised:
• Protected health information
• Names
• Addresses
• Medical data
• Treatment information
• Lab results
• Insurance information
• Payment cards
• Social Security Number
Customers Impacted: 1.4 Million.
https://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/14-million-patient-records-breached-unitypoint-health-phishing-attack

New Zealand – Hāwera High School
Exploit: Phishing.
Risk to Small Business: High: Ransomware attacks can be very disruptive.
Individual Risk: High: Students could lose files stored locally on computers. High risk of identity theft if PII is stored.
Hāwera High School: A New Zealand High School.
Date Occurred/Discovered: August 2018
Date Disclosed: August 2, 2018
Data Compromised:
• Local files stored on school computers
Customers Impacted: Students at the school.
https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/08/02/new_zealand_school_hit_by_ransomware_scum/

India – CreditMate.in
Exploit: Exposed database.
Risk to Small Business: High: The exposed database was found during a routine google search, this kind of breach would seriously damage an organizations image.
Individual Risk: High: Data key for identity theft were exposed in this breach.
CreditMate: Helps customers obtain loans to purchase motorbikes.
Date Occurred/Discovered: July 27, 2018
Date Disclosed: August 2, 2018
Data Compromised:
• Member reference number
• Enquiry number
• Enquiry purpose
• Amount of loan being sought
• Full name
• Date of birth
• Gender
• Income tax ID number
• Passport
• Driver’s license
• Universal ID number
• Telephone number
• Email address
• Employment information
• Employment income
• CIBIL credit score
• Residential address
• Payment history of other loans/credit cards
Customers Impacted: 19,000.
https://www.databreaches.net/exclusive-creditmate-in-developers-goof-left-19000-consumers-credit-reports-unsecured/

United States – Yale University
Exploit: Unclear.
Risk to Small Business: High: Highly sensitive personal information was leaked which would damage consumer trust.
Individual Risk: High: The data accessed would be highly useful for bad actors looking to steal someone’s identity.
Yale University: A prestigious American University.
Date Occurred/Discovered: April 2008 – January 2009
Date Disclosed: June 2018
Data Compromised:
• Social security numbers
• Dates of birth
• Email addresses
• Physical addresses
Customers Impacted: 119,000
https://www.zdnet.com/article/yale-discloses-old-school-data-breach/

A note for your customers:
Texts from a Hacker.
With the breach of Reddit being disclosed this week, it’s key to remember the importance of robust cybersecurity, given that the hacker of the site was able to bypass 2FA. The actor was able to do this by using a method called ‘SMS intercept’ which is when the hacker is able to receive the text that contains the code for authentication. One way this is done is by SIM-swap, which is when the attacker convinces the phone provider that he is the target and applies their service to a new SIM card. Another method of attack is when bad actor impersonates the target and tricks the phone provider into transferring the target’s number to a new provider where the attacker is then able to access any 2FA codes coming into the phone.

A more secure alternative to SMS 2FA is app-based authentication through organizations such as Duo, which is not subject to the same vectors of attack. Stay vigilant out there, because SMS-intercept attacks are going to become more and more prevalent as they have been shown to be successful, and publicly too considering Reddit is one of the most popular sites on the internet.

Advertisements

The Week in Breach 07/09/2018 to 07/18/2018

The Week in Breach

This week there was a TON of attention in the media about dark web markets and what’s bought and sold in these shady marketplaces. Timehop, a social media nostalgia app was breached exposing the PII of at least 21 million individuals, due to lack of 2FA, while Macy’s was hit with a breach where credit card data was accessed.

 Highlights from The Week in Breach:

– Pedal to the metal! Gas stolen in hack.
– Tracking military workouts!
– Macy’s falls victim to a breach.
– Timehop wishes it could turn back time for more security!

In Other News:

Dead Men Do Tell Tales
Hackers on the Dark Web have always sold medical records, as they are valued much higher than credit card info or PII. Researchers found this week that bad actors in these dark corners of the web are also selling medical records of deceased patients, with one vendor claiming to have 60,000 available for purchase. The records for sale include name, SSN, Address, zip code, phone number, birthday, sex, insurance and even date of death. What ever happened to respecting the dead?
https://threatpost.com/deceased-patient-data-being-sold-on-dark-web/133871/

Classified Documents for $200
The U.S. military can’t escape the Dark Web either! A lot of military documents have turned up on dark web markets after a hacker, with only a moderate level of technical skill, was able to access a captain’s computer through a previously-disclosed FTP vulnerability. Some of the documents are classified, and all of them contain sensitive data about military tactics or hardware. One of the documents is a maintenance book for the MQ-9 Reaper drone which is regarded as one of the deadliest drones used by the United States. How much money will classified U.S. military documents fetch on the Dark Web? $200. That says a lot about how much information is available for criminals to buy.
https://www.theverge.com/2018/7/10/17555982/hacker-caught-selling-stolen-air-force-drone-manual-dark-web

A $10 Key into Your Network
Remote access to IT systems is a competitive market on the Dark Web, with some running an interest to criminals for as low as $10! Some of these forums have tens of thousands of compromised systems available for bad actors to choose from, across all versions of Windows and at places such as international airports, hospitals and governments. One international airport found on the site had the administrator account exposed, as well as accounts associated with the companies that provide camera surveillance and building security. That’s not a good look!
https://www.zdnet.com/article/hackers-are-selling-backdoors-into-pcs-for-just-10/

Gassed Up
This week in Detroit, two suspects managed to steal over 600 gallons of gasoline after hacking the gas pump. The fuel is worth about $1,800 and was taken in broad daylight over the course of 90 minutes. At least 10 cars benefited from the hack and the police are at a complete loss on who conducted the hack. The hacker or hackers used a remote device that was able to alter the price of the gas and lock out the clerk from being able to shut off the affected pump. With gas prices being so high, it’s likely that attacks like this will continue in the future.
https://www.clickondetroit.com/news/men-hack-into-pump-at-detroit-gas-station-steal-600-gallons-of-gas_

Fitness App Turned Finder App
A fitness tracking app hailing from Finland has disabled their global activity map after it was revealed it could be used to track the geolocation of military personnel. The map showed the biking and running routes of its users, but also included the usernames of each person, allowing one to cross-reference the username with other websites and possibly identify the person’s name. Using the map, one could see where the person jogged around their home address and around the military base; possibly even bases that are secret to foreign countries.
https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/technology/polar-app-disables-feature-that-allowed-journalists-to-identify-intelligence-personnel/

Sex Appall
A twist on a classic email scam has appeared this week, with the classic ‘sextortion’ scam getting an upgrade. Now rather than just an intimidation email where targeted parties pay up out of fear of friends and family finding out what they do privately, the email also includes a password. The password appears to be from a large or multiple large data breaches, but these data breaches appear to be fairly old. Those who reported receiving the email claimed that the passwords were correct… ten years ago. While the passwords are outdated in many cases, this likely indicates that we will see more complex versions of this scam appearing in the near future.
https://krebsonsecurity.com/2018/07/sextortion-scam-uses-recipients-hacked-passwords/#more-44406

Podcasts:

Know Tech Talks – Hosted by Barb Paluszkiewicz
The Continuum Podcast
Security Now – Hosted by Steve Gibson, Leo Laporte
Defensive Security Podcast – Hosted by Jerry Bell (@maliciouslink) and Andrew Kalat (@lerg)
Small Business, Big Marketing – Australia’s #1 Marketing Show!


United States – Macy’s

Exploit: Supply chain exploit.
Risk to Small Business: High: A bad actor accessing names and card information can severely damage consumer trust in a brand.
Individual Risk: High: Individuals affected by this breach are at high risk of their credit card details being sold on the Dark Web.
Macy’s: Large department store chain.
Date Occurred/Discovered: April 26 – June, 2018
Date Disclosed: July, 2018
Data Compromised:

  • Full name
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Date of birth
  • Debit/ credit card numbers
  • Expiration dates

Customers Impacted: Unclear but the hacker operated undetected for almost 2 months.
https://cyware.com/category/breaches-and-incidents-news

United States – Timehop

Exploit: Lack of 2FA on cloud infrastructure.
Risk to Small Business: High: All of Timehop’s customers were a part of this breach, which discredits the organization and could have long-lasting effects on the business.
Individual Risk: Moderate: The credentials stolen could be used to compromise other accounts.
Timehop: Social media aggregation site that allows users to see posts made in the past.
Date Occurred/Discovered: July 4, 2018
Date Disclosed: July 8, 2018
Data Compromised:        

  • Names
  • Email addresses
  • Phone numbers
  • Date of birth
  • Gender

Customers Impacted: 21 Million.
https://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/timehop-breach-hits-21-million/
https://www.timehop.com/security
https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/11/timehop-data-breach/

United States – Cass Regional Medical Center

Exploit: Ransomware.
Risk to Small Business: High: A ransomware attack on any business in any sector would greatly diminish the organization’s ability to operate as needed. In some ransomware cases the data encrypted is lost entirely.
Individual Risk: Moderate: At this point in time there is no evidence that the data affected was also exfiltrated.
Cass Regional Medical Center: Missouri based medical center.
Date Occurred/Discovered: July 9, 2018
Date Disclosed: July 9, 2018
Data Compromised: The medical center’s internal communications system and access to their electronic health record system were affected by the hack, but there is no public indication that patient data has been accessed.
Customers Impacted: Many details surrounding the attack are being withheld from the public at this time, but restoration of the affected systems were at 50% as of July 10, 2018.
https://cyware.com/news/missouris-cass-regional-medical-center-hit-with-ransomware-attack-92884b12

Germany – DomainFactory

Exploit: Dirty cow vulnerability. (this is a nine-year-old critical vulnerability has been discovered in virtually all versions of the Linux operating system and is actively being exploited in the wild)
Risk to Small Business: High: A breach including banking account numbers would heavily damage the reputation of a small business.
Individual Risk: High: A wealth of PII was accessed during this breach and could leave individuals vulnerable to account takeover or identity theft.
DomainFactory: Web hosting service based in Ismaning.
Date Occurred/Discovered: July 6, 2018
Date Disclosed: July 9, 2018
Data Compromised:

  • Names
  • Addresses
  • Phone numbers
  • DomainFactory passwords
  • Dates of birth
  • Bank names/ account numbers
  • Schufa scores

Customers Impacted: The amount of customers impacted has not been made publicly available.
 https://www.zdnet.com/article/user-data-exposed-in-domain-factory-hosting-security-breach/
https://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/unauthorized-party-accessed/


 Did you know?

The cost of a breach
A recent study conducted by IBM provides some context to the same old story that you hear in the news of big bad breaches and how scary they are for your business. The Cost of a Data Breach Study by Ponemon* puts numbers to these stories and provides a wealth of analysis so even someone who has never used a computer before can quantify the seriousness of a breach… as long as they are familiar with money.

The average cost of a breach increased this year by 6.4%, with the per capita cost rising less, but only barely, by 4.8% (page 3). The cost of a data breach varies greatly by country, with the United States average breach price coming in at $7.91 Million and per capita costing $233. Canada’s per capita cost is the second highest out of the nations surveyed at $202 per record, and their average price of a breach is $4.74 million. Australia’s cost of a breach is less than the US and Canada, but Aussies are far from getting off free. The average cost of a breach down under is $1.99 million and the per capita cost averages at $108 (page 13).

The study also explored the main factors that were found to affect the cost of a breach, stating 5 major contributing factors that could make the difference between a manageable breach vs a mega breach. The loss of customers following a breach, the size of the data breach, the time it takes to identify and contain a breach, management of detection costs and management of the costs following a breach are the factors that most contribute to the cost of a breach (page 7). The time it takes to identify a breach being a major contributing factor to the cost of a breach is particularly important due to the fact that organizations saw an increased time to identify a breach this year. This can be contributed to the ever-increasing severity of malicious attacks companies face and highlight the need for proactive monitoring for breaches, as well as a serious focus on cybersecurity on a management level. That’s why tools such as Dark Web ID™ that dredge the Dark Web for personal information and credentials can contribute greatly to decreasing the cost of a breach. Organizations that identified breaches within 100 days saved more than $1 Million (page 9) compared to companies who did not. That says a lot because after all… money talks.

*Source: Ponemon Cost of Breach Study 2018

New Cybersecurity Regulations on Horizon for Corporate America

Image result for horizon

 

Prime Telecommunications, Inc., a leading managed technology services provider, is helping small to mid-sized businesses (SMBs) navigate the recent changes in cybersecurity standards that are highly likely to affect American businesses. Many have heard about Facebook’s recent controversy around Cambridge Analytica and irresponsible data sharing policies. Marc Zuckerburg even testified in front of the EU in order to address these major concerns and the result has been the passing and implementation of the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), which took effect in Europe in late May.

This new regulation demands transparency and responsible data practices on the behalf of all companies that do business in the EU. Some examples of GDPR in effect are 1) Requiring all subscribers to opt-in again to receiving all newsletters/marketing emails/etc. and 2) Companies need to report any major data breaches to all of their customers within 72 hours of the breach occurring. There are many more components to the regulation, however, the penalties for not adhering to these standards are in the millions.

This standard is very likely to reach the US marketplace and for most companies, this standard is already affecting their businesses. For example, if a business has any suppliers, customers, or satellite offices in countries located within the EU, they need to take a serious look at their data practices and make sure they are compliant. In time, many experts expect GDPR or some derivation of it to affect US-based businesses. “We strongly believe data regulation is coming to the US marketplace it’s certain that some form of cybersecurity regulation is imminent and severe penalties will follow businesses that aren’t compliant,” stated Vic Levinson, President of Prime Telecommunications. “There’s simply been too many data breaches that have affected major companies like Dropbox and Target for regulation not to come. When it does Prime Telecommunications’ proven cyber security program will play a major role in helping our customers meet these new regulations,” added Mr. Levinson.

Cybersecurity has transitioned from the era where an enterprise could “play dumb,” expect a slap on the wrist, pay minor fines and resume business as usual. Cybersecurity is now a central pillar of any organization’s success or demise and with the stakes as high as they are now, SMBs need to address their data policies and practices immediately.

While most business owners dread the idea of spending time, energy and money on meeting a new compliance, the simultaneous opportunity is for businesses to leverage the expertise of Prime Telecommunications to lower their operating costs through the deployment of advanced technology to offset the new investments in cybersecurity that they will likely be required to make. Whether the organization is large or small, soaring or declining, it’s time to revisit cybersecurity policies today.

The Week in Breach June 23 to June 29 2018

 

The Week in Breach

 

It’s no surprise that this week has been busy for cyber-attacks on the web, targeting big events such as the World Cup but also continuing to pursue small-and medium-sized businesses across the globe.

– Google is still leaking!
– Another Dark Web marketplace down in a big win for French authorities.
– Do androids dream of electric… rats? A new malware for Android!
– Going phishing at the World Cup.

In other news… Google has announced that Chromecast and Google Home devices, that are easily scripted to reveal precise location data to the public, will be patched in the coming weeks. Disclosed by a researcher at Tripwire, the simple script running on a website can collect location by revealing a list of internet connections available to the device. Researchers go on to describe how easy it would be to remote into an exposed individual’s device and network.
https://krebsonsecurity.com/2018/06/google-to-fix-location-data-leak-in-google-home-chromecast/

The Dark Web marketplace known as ‘Black Hand’ was shut down by French authorities this week. The marketplace was used to sell drugs, weapons, stolen personal information and banking data, as well as fake documents. The site had over 3,000 users from France and was highly active for selling illicit materials.
https://www.hackread.com/authorities-shut-down-dark-web-marketplace-black-hand/

Researchers have come across a new malware family that takes form as an Android remote administration tool (or RAT). The malware uses the messaging app Telegram both to spread and to operate the RAT. When an attacker gains access to a device, he or she operates it by using Telegram’s bot functionality and can intercept text messages, send text messages, make calls, record audio or screen, and locate the device.
https://www.welivesecurity.com/2018/06/18/new-telegram-abusing-android-rat/

With the World Cup in full swing this week, bad actors are taking advantage of the attention on the event and spinning up malicious email campaigns. The idea is that people are less vigilant about clicking emails from unknown sources when related to an event that only occurs every couple of years. Sites selling fake tickets, offering fictitious giveaways and luring unsuspecting induvial to click on malicious links related to the World Cup are popping up all over the place.
 https://www.darkreading.com/attacks-breaches/wallchart-phishing-campaign-exploits-world-cup-watchers/d/d-id/1332080

A network worm called ‘Olympic Destroyer’ that debuted at the 2018 winter Olympics is still doing damage across Europe. Since the Olympics, the group has taken an interest in financial and biochemical organizations and oftentimes uses spear phishing as a way to gain illegal access to systems. The group has so far remained anonymous, using a complex combination of false flags and other deceptive behavior to avoid being revealed.
https://www.darkreading.com/vulnerabilities—threats/olympic-destroyer-reappears-in-attacks-on-europe-russia/d/d-id/1332094


What we’re listening to this week!

Know Tech Talks – Hosted by Barb Paluszkiewicz
The Continuum Podcast
Security Now – Hosted by Steve Gibson, Leo Laporte
Defensive Security Podcast – Hosted by Jerry Bell (@maliciouslink) and Andrew Kalat (@lerg)
Small Business, Big Marketing – Australia’s #1 Marketing Show!

Indian Government

Exploit: Leaky websites, lack of basic website/ internet security controls.

Risk to Small Business: High: Demonstrates that poor cyber hygiene and complete disregard for basic website/ internet security can be highly damaging.

Risk to Exploited Individuals: High: Sensitive personally identifiable information that can be used for identity theft.

Indian Government: The Republic of India’s government.

Date Occurred/Discovered The government has experienced a wide variety of breaches over a long span of time, but with their websites being audited in May of 2018, their continuing lack of security with such highly sensitive information proves to be a continuing problem.
Date Disclosed June 20, 2018
Data Compromised · Names and phone numbers of those who bought various medicines from state-run pharmacies

Recently but not this week:

· Aadhaar number

· Data collected in ‘Smart Pulse Survey’

· Geolocation of people based on caste/religion

· Geolocation of ambulances, why they were summoned, and the hospital destination

How it was compromised Leaky websites and dashboards allowing anyone to look up HIGHLY sensitive medical and personal information.
Customers Impacted Anyone who has purchased medicine from the state-run pharmacies.
Attribution/Vulnerability Poorly configured database.

http://www.newindianexpress.com/specials/2018/jun/19/in-wake-of-data-leaks-andhra-pradesh-orders-audit-of-all-government-websites-1830571.html

https://www.huffingtonpost.in/2018/06/19/caught-leaking-information-on-people-buying-viagra-from-government-stores-ap-orders-security-audit_a_23463256/

Med Associates

Exploit: Supply Chain/Trusted Vendor Compromise
Compromised Workstation, most likely compromised credentials and a lack of multi-factor authentication.

Risk to Small Business: High: At least 42 physician practices had their customer’s PII compromised. Lack of situational awareness within the supply chain will create significant challenges for the vendors that replied on the claims processing vendor.

Risk to Exploited Individuals: High: This breach has disclosed a massive amount of HIGHLY sensitive personal and health information leaving customers impacted significant risk of identity theft and fraud.

Med Associates: A New York-based claims processing company.

Date Occurred/Discovered March 2018
Date Disclosed June 2018
Data Compromised · Patient names

· Dates of Birth

· Addresses

· Dates of service

· Diagnosis codes

· Procedure codes

· Insurance information, such as insurance ID numbers

How it was compromised Not disclosed, but it was specified that the attack did not involve ransomware or phishing.
Customers Impacted 270,000
Attribution/Vulnerability Still under investigation, but the third party gained remote access to the workstation without phishing or ransomware.

https://www.govinfosecurity.com/hacking-incident-at-billing-vendor-affects-270000-patients-a-11116


Chicago Public Schools

Exploit: Negligence

Risk to Small Business: High: If a breach of this magnitude happened to a small business, it is unlikely it would recover. This kind of negligence causing a breach tarnishes a name to a great degree, but people do not have a choice but to continue using Chicago public schools because it is a government-run program.

Risk to Exploited Individuals: High: Unfortunately, a minor’s personally identifiable information is highly sought after and valuable as its often not monitored.

Chicago Public Schools: School district in the Illinois city of Chicago

Date Occurred/Discovered June 16, 2018
Date Disclosed June 16, 2018
Data Compromised · Children’s names.

· Home phone numbers.

· Cell phone numbers.

· Email addresses.

· School ID numbers

How it was compromised When sending out an email about applications to selective enrollment schools, an employee attached a spreadsheet containing the sensitive data which was then sent out to families in the district. The person who made the critical mistake is going to lose their job according to the superintendent.
Customers Impacted 3,700 students and families
Attribution/Vulnerability Negligence

https://chicago.suntimes.com/news/cps-data-breach-exposes-private-student-data/

An important takeaway from this week is how easy it is to unsuspectingly leak personal information. A study conducted by Positive Technologies found some alarming statistics when researching the vulnerabilities of something that is often overlooked; web applications.

The study uncovered that almost half (48%) of the web applications tested were vulnerable to unauthorized access from a third party, with 17% of the tested applications being so unsecured that full control could be acquired. Every single web app that the study looked had vulnerabilities with just over half of them (52%) being high risk. A little under half (44%) of web apps examined that processed personal data leaked that personal data and 70% of all applications were at risk of leaking critical information to the business. The study found an average of two critical vulnerabilities per web application, and where the researchers had access to the source code of the web app they uncovered high-severity vulnerabilities 100% of the time. The industries used in this study of web applications include: finance, IT, e-commerce, telecom, government, mass media, and manufacturing.

Make sure to consider what web applications you are using in both your professional and personal life, otherwise, your information could end up on the Dark Web.

https://www.ptsecurity.com/upload/corporate/ww-en/analytics/Web-application-vulnerabilities-2018-eng.pdf

https://www.darkreading.com/attacks-breaches/most-websites-and-web-apps-no-match-for-attack-barrage/d/d-id/1332092

 

Highlights from The Week in Breach: May 30 to June 6 2018

Highlights from The Week in Breach:

– Finance sector attacks ramping up
– BackSwap JavaScript injections effectively circumventing detection
– Honda has leaky buckets too

This week in breach has all been about money, money, money. The finance sector is getting pelted with attacks recently – even more than usual – and Mexico, Canada, and Poland have been hit the worst.

In other news…

North Korea is still up to their old tricks, targeting South Korean websites with advanced zero-day attacks.
https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/security/activex-zero-day-discovered-in-recent-north-korean-hacks/

School is letting out which means grade changing breaches are in season! Two students at Bloomfield Hills High School attempted to fudge their report card and refund lunches for themselves and 20 other students.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/leemathews/2018/05/22/school-hackers-changed-grades-and-tried-to-get-a-free-lunch/#478b6d026e7d

The government of Idaho was hacked 2 times in 3 days which is not a very good look.
https://idahobusinessreview.com/2018/05/22/state-government-hacked-twice-in-three-days/

Coca-Cola had a breach that compromised 8,000 employees’ personal data, but they are also providing identity monitoring for a year at no cost. Ahh… refreshing, isn’t it?
https://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/news/no-smiles-for-cocacola-after-data/


 What we’re STILL listening to this week!

Security Now – Hosted by Steve Gibson, Leo Laporte

Defensive Security Podcast – Hosted by Jerry Bell (@maliciouslink) and Andrew Kalat (@lerg)

Small Business, Big Marketing – Australia’s #1 Marketing Show!

Simplii Financial (CIBC) & Bank of Montreal
Exploit: Spear Phishing
Type of Exploit Risk to Small Business:  High: Personal and account information from a large number of customers were compromised, opening up the possibility of identity theft for business owners or employees.

Risk to Exploited Individuals: High: A large number of both personal and account information was breached from both banks including social insurance numbers and account balances. 

Simplii Financial: Owned by CIBC, Simplii Financial is a Canadian banking institution offering a wide array of services for their customers such as mortgages and investing.

BMO (Bank of Montreal): BMO is also a Canadian banking institution that offers investing, financial planning, personal accounts, and mortgages.

Date Occurred/
Discovered
The weekend of the 25th
Date Disclosed May 28, 2018
Data Compromised Personal and account information of the two bank’s customers. The hackers provided a sample of the breached data, containing the names, dates of birth, social insurance number and account balances of two customers.
How it was Compromised It is believed that both bank data breaches have been carried out by the same group of fraudsters, due to the time frame and ‘blackmail’ strategy of the group rather than selling of the data. It is suspected that a spear phishing attack was used, focusing on individual employees with targeted phishing attempts rather than a ‘dragnet’ approach typically seen in phishing attacks.
Customers Impacted
Between the two banks over 90,000 people’s personal and account information was compromised during the breach. CIBC owned Simplii Financial reported 40,000 accounts compromised compared to BMO who declared 50,000 accounts compromised later on the same day.
Attribution/Vulnerability Undisclosed at this time.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/simplii-data-hack-1.4680575

Honda Car India
Exploit: Misconfigured/ Insecure Amazon S3 buckets
Type of Exploit Risk to Small Business: High
Risk to Exploited Individuals: Moderate: Presumably low-risk PII and vehicle information exposed.
Honda Car India: Honda is an international cooperation from Japan that specializes in cars, planes, motorcycles and power equipment.

Date Occurred/
Discovered
The details were left exposed for at least three months. A security researcher who was scanning the web for unsecured servers left a message of warning timestamped February 28.
Date Disclosed May 30 2018
Data Compromised
Names
User gender
Phone numbers for both users and their trusted contacts
Email addresses for both users and their trusted contacts
Account passwords
Car VIN
Car Connect IDs, and more
How it was Compromised
A researcher who was scanning the web for AWS S3 buckets with incorrect permissions left a message in Honda Car India’s server to try and warn them to secure their server. Honda was not even aware that the note was added, signaling a complete lack of monitoring on the companies part.
Customers Impacted
50,000 of Honda Car India’s customers have had their personal info exposed on the internet for three months at the minimum.
Attribution/Vulnerability Negligence. Once the researcher noticed that Honda had still not secured their buckets, he reached out to them but it still took the company 2 weeks to respond.

https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/security/honda-india-left-details-of-50-000-customers-exposed-on-an-aws-s3-server/

SPEI
Exploit: Man in the Middle Attack
Type of Exploit Risk to Small Business: Severe: Security certificate exploit, website login spoofing, traffic re-direct. Significant financial loss. Threat intelligence/ data share fail.
Risk to Exploited IndividualsLow:  Financial Institutions will absorb the loss.

SPEI: Mexican domestic payment system.

Date Occurred/
Discovered
A breach was first detected on April 17th, with 5 more financial institutions being breached on April 24th, 26th, and May 8th.
Date Disclosed May 2018
Data Compromised
$15 Million stolen
How it was Compromised The central bank of Mexico experienced a man in the middle attack in April that it was able to stop, but failed to warn other financial institutions in the country about the severity of the incident. This led to 5 other financial institutions being compromised except the attacks were successful. It is unclear exactly how the hackers were able to enter the network, but the situation is constantly developing.
Attribution/Vulnerability Outside actors/ not disclosing breach possibly facilitated more breaches.
Customers Impacted Multiple financial institutions in Mexico

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-29/mexico-foiled-a-110-million-bank-heist-then-kept-it-a-secret

Polish Banks
Exploit: JavaScript malware injection named BackSwap
Type of Exploit Risk to Small Business: High: Sophisticated JavaScript injection designed to bypass advanced security/ injection detection.
Risk to Exploited Individuals: High: those who used the polish banks targeted by the new malware will take a financial loss, 2FA does not combat this.

Polish Banks: 5 Polish banks are being targeted

Date Occurred/
Discovered
The banking malware was first introduced in March 2018. The malware has been increasingly active since then.
Date Disclosed May 2018
Data Compromised Banking account information and funds
How it was Compromised
A new malware family. This family of banking malware uses an unfortunately elegant solution to bypass traditional security measures, using Windows message loop events rather than process injection methods to monitor browsing activity. When an infected user begins banking activities, the malware injects malicious JavaScript directly into the address bar. The script hides the change in recipient by replacing the input field with a fake one displaying the intended destination.
Attribution/Vulnerability Outside actors, deployed through spam email campaign

https://www.welivesecurity.com/2018/05/25/backswap-malware-empty-bank-accounts/

The last couple of months has seen an increase in the number of attacks on financial institutions around the world. Both the Bank Negara Malaysia and Bancomext were targeted in SWIFT-related attacks while two Canadian banks’ data was held at ransom in a massive breach. The largest three banks in the Netherlands were hit by DDoS attacks, the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority stated that cyber-attacks were the greatest threat to their banks, while at the same time British banks spending on fighting financial crime sits at 5 billion pounds.

While no sector is immune from cyber-attack, the nature of the financial industry makes an attractive target. The sector is made up of institutions that store large quantities of sensitive data that can be sold on the Dark Web, as well as institutions that have access to large sums of capitol.

Additional Sources:
https://www.hstoday.us/uncategorized/cyber-attacks-on-banking-infrastructure-increase/

Surprise! What’s The Country Where All The CEO Fraud Gangs Are?

KnowBe4’s Stu Sjouwerman wrote a really great blog about Business Email Compromise. Once upon a time, about 5 years ago, if you got a letter from a Nigerian prince or some sad story about not being able to transfer funds, that was obviously a scam. You knew, I knew, anybody but the most gullible knew it. Those were referred to as Nigerian 419 scams- 419 is the section of the Nigerian criminal code where this practice is codified as illegal.

Image result for nigerian prince

But times have changed and so have the gangs…

What if your CFO got an email from your COO or your CEO? What if your AP clerk got an email from your CFO- or your Comptroller?

A new study by Agari concludes that, despite all the attention nation-state espionage services have been getting for their phishing attacks, the big threat still comes from criminal gangs.

Here is your quick Executive Summary:

  • 97% of people who answer a Business Email Compromise (aka CEO Fraud) email become victims
  • The average BEC incident included a payment request of $35,500 (ranging from $1,500 to $201,805)
  • 24% of all observed email scam attempts between 2011 and 2018 were BEC even though BEC only started in earnest in 2016

And What’s That Country?

Many of those criminal gangs continue to operate from Nigeria, of the ten gangs engaged in the email scams that Agari studied, nine were based in Nigeria. Conclusion: the old Nigerian 419 scam has upgraded big time.

While business email scams are relative newcomers to the world of online crime, becoming popular only as recently as 2016, they’re now the most common kind of attack, accounting for 24% of phishing emails.

Patrick Peterson, Agari’s Executive Chairman said: “The sad irony is that these foreign adversaries are using our own legitimate infrastructure against us in attacks that are far more damaging and much harder to detect than any intrusion or malware.”

BEC, in which the scammer poses as an executive of the business being phished, has the greatest potential for a large, immediate payout. All organizations should make it their policy never to use email to direct fund transfers, and they should train their employees to be aware of this social engineering tactic.

Other scams have similar potential to bankrupt their targets. Real estate brokers, for example, have been targeted with malicious attachments that enable criminals to conduct man-in-the-middle account takeover scams that hit escrow accounts.

Scammers Use A Multi-Step Process

An interesting finding of Agari’s study is the multi-step process many of the scammers use: a probe email is followed by one or more follow-ups that deliver the scammer’s punch.

In the case of business email compromise, a common and effective probe might ask, “Are you at your desk to make a payment?” We have seen that these organized crime groups are starting to automate and script the process of sending these initial probes to their targets.

Interactive training can help a business arm its employees against social engineering. KnowBe4 actually allows you to monitor what an employee who falls for a simulated CEO fraud attack writes back, and automatically step them through immediate remedial training.

Want a free tool to see how vulnerable you are to spoofing? Cut and paste this link to your browser- https://info.knowbe4.com/domain-spoof-test-partner?partnerid=0010c00001wis6gAAA

Which Users Will Cause The Most Damage To Your Network And Are An Active Liability?


by Stu Sjouwerman

The statistic that four percent of employees will click on almost anything, with “Free Coffee” and “Package Delivery” taking some of the top spots among phishbait subject lines, may not sound like much.

However, keep in mind the most successful marketing campaigns only achieve around two percent. With double the response of most marketing initiatives, it’s no wonder that the phishing attacks keep coming.

That statistic comes from Verizon’s 2018 Data Breach Investigations Report. The report showed that the number of phishing emails continues to grow. The victims include government agencies that house some of our most sensitive records. The report also reveals that one quarter of all malware detected was ransomware, and it indicated that 68 percent of breaches go undetected for months.

The answer to fending off phishing campaigns may lie in the same employees who choose to click. Using a type of crowd-sourced security that turns employees into human sensors, could be the answer. One example of this approach is the US Department of Defense Cyber Security/Information Assurance program, where contractors share intelligence with each other and the DOD.

With the right training, employees can learn to recognize phishing attempts and alert others of the impending threat. This type of information gives the IT team an advantage leading to a faster response.

Here are a few steps that can empower your employees to be human sensors using a Phish Alert Button:

– An aware victim can be a good sensor. Encourage employees to ask how reading a suspicious email makes them feel. Rushed, pressured, exploited? Then be wary. Train your employees to recognize how the email makes them feel.

– Build an intelligence network. If you make it easy to report potential threat emails, you’ll build a steady stream of alerts.

– But don’t overuse the “Abuse Box.” Phishing needs to be reported. Flooding an underprepared IT department with messages that need to be checked, may be counterproductive. Make sure the IT department is ready to handle the volume. So build user awareness as you build capacity.

The number of phishing emails can be expected to grow. But with a change in the way your organization perceives and responds to social engineering, users can become your best defense and not your weakest leak. As always, consider interactive, new-school security awareness training. It’s effective and extremely affordable.

GCN has the story, written by Lex Robinson who works at Cofense.

Free Phish Alert Button
When new spear phishing campaigns hit your organization, it is vital that IT staff be alerted immediately. One of the easiest ways to convert your employees from potential targets and victims into allies and partners in the fight against cybercrime is to roll out KnowBe4’s free Phish Alert Button to your employees’ desktops. Once installed, the Phish Alert Button allows your users on the front lines to sound the alarm when suspicious and potentially dangerous phishing emails slip past the other layers of protection your organization relies on to keep the bad guys at bay.

Don’t like to click on redirected links? Cut & Paste this link in your browser:

https://info.knowbe4.com/free-phish-alert-partner?partnerid=0010c00001wis6gAAA

Our friend, Kevin Lancaster from ID Agent, continues in his weekly posting of the week in breaches and phishing attacks. This is important- not just for enterprises, but also for small and medium sized businesses. Attacks are coming in from all directions- here are some highlights from his post:

Protection from Hacks

Two-factor Authentication Hackable?
Our friends at KnowBe4 show 2 Factor may not be enough in some cases.

Student of The Month in California!
Phish Teacher, Change Grades, Get Felony!  You can’t make this stuff up!

Good on ya Mate, Good on ya!
Crikey! Australians appear to have better password hygiene than the rest of us?


What we’re listening to this week:   

Security Now – Hosted by Steve Gibson, Leo Laporte

Defensive Security Podcast – Hosted by Jerry Bell (@maliciouslink) and Andrew Kalat (@lerg)

Small Business, Big Marketing – Australia’s #1 Marketing Show!


Highlights from The Week in Breach

  • Retail Point of Sale Systems (POS) can’t catch a break! can’t get their s*** together.
  • Healthcare insider threat strikes again.
  • Your legal case may have been closed… or deleted.
  • Your personality is revealing and, it may have been revealed.

Chili’s Restaurants
Retail

Small Business Risk: High (Malware/ Forensics, Brand Reputation/ Loyalty)
Exploit: Malware-based Point of Sale Exploit
Risk to Individuals: Moderate (Replacement of Credit/ Debit Cards with limited liability)

What you need to know:  Small business retailers should take the time to educate themselves on POS exploits and how they typically occur. Since most systems do not reside within the traditional network environment, processing systems are most commonly exploited via compromised trusted 3rdparty vendors, common credential stuffing and exploit kits delivered via email.

Chili’s Restaurants

Date Occurred/Discovered March-April 2018 / Discovered 5/11/18
Date Disclosed 5/14/18
Data Compromised Preliminary investigation indicates that malware was used to gather payment card information, including credit and debit card numbers, as well as names of cardholders who made in-restaurant purchases.
How it was Compromised Malware
Customers Impacted Chili’s has not disclosed the restaurants impacted and/or the number of customers impacted.
Attribution/Vulnerability Undisclosed at this time.

http://time.com/money/5276047/chilis-data-breach-2018/

Note: Breaches have huge repercussions, often resulting in customers losing trust in the brands. According to a study from KPMG, 19% percent of consumers said they would stop shopping at a breached retailer, and 33% would take a long-term break.

https://www.sfgate.com/technology/businessinsider/article/Chili-s-restaurants-were-hit-by-a-data-breach-12911248.php

Nuance Communications
Healthcare

Small Business Risk: High (PII Exposure, Brand Damage, Compliance Violation & Fines)
Exploit: Former Employee/ Insider Knowledge Exploit.  System and security control failure
Risk to Individuals: Moderate (Compromised Data Contained and not posted for exploit)

What you need to know:  Coming on the heels of a costly malware outbreak in 2017, it seems that Nuance had the limited ability to detect on-network anomalous behavior. With such a large percentage of its target market comprised of organizations that operate in regulated industries including Healthcare, Nuance should have invested in aggressive insider threat/insider mishap detection.

Organizations operating in regulated markets should take a more aggressive approach to both inside threat detection and threats originating within the supply chain as was demonstrated in this case.

Nuance Communications (speech recognition software)

Date Occurred/Discovered 11/20/17 – 12/9/17
Date Disclosed 5/14/18
Data Compromised Exposed data included names, birth dates, medical record and patient numbers, as well as service details such as patient conditions, assessments, treatments, care plans and dates of service. The incident did not include information such as social security number, driver’s license number or financial account numbers.
How it was Compromised An unauthorized third party, possibly a former Nuance employee, accessed one of its medical transcription platforms, exposing 45,000 individuals’ records.
Customers Impacted Personal information of thousands of individuals from several contracted clients, including the San Francisco Department of Public Health. The Justice Department said that it does not appear that any of the information taken was used or sold for any purpose. All the data has been recovered from the former employee.
Attribution/Vulnerability  Unknown/undisclosed at this time.

Note: News of the data breach follows the company having been hit by the NotPetya malware outbreak in June 2017. Earlier this year, Nuance reported that the outbreak cost it $92 million. “For fiscal year 2017, we estimate that we lost approximately $68 million in revenues, primarily in our healthcare segment, due to the service disruption and the reserves we established for customer refund credits related to the malware incident,” Nuance reported in a Feb. 9 form 10-Q filing to the SEC. “Additionally, we incurred incremental costs of approximately $24 million for fiscal year 2017 as a result of our remediation and restoration efforts, as well as incremental amortization expenses.”

The incident is a reminder that Insider breaches remain one of the most difficult kinds of improper access attacks to defend against. There are a variety of tools and methods to monitor which resources an employee accesses, but preventing insiders from stealing data or intellectual property remains challenging.

https://www.bankinfosecurity.com/nuance-communications-breach-affected-45000-patients-a-11002

Mason Law Office
Legal

Small Business Risk: High (Compliance Violation & Fines, Brand/ Reputation Damage)
Exploit: Apparent Credential- based, account take-over exploit
Risk to Individuals: High: Sensitive PII and Legal Information loss and/ or deletion  

What you need to know:  It’s not 100% clear that this was an insider threat-based exploit. Regardless, Mason Law Office suffered an all-too-common account-based takeover compromise.  Legal firms leveraging 3rd party case management systems should take the time to review their security controls and procedure.  They should also conduct a full audit to determine who has access to what data within these 3rd party systems and make the required corrections.

Mason Law Office – Sacramento, CA (mycase.com)

Date Occurred/Discovered Discovered 5/5/18
Date Disclosed 5/14/18
Data Compromised Client data was potentially accessed, client case information was deleted, and other administrative changes were made to the system. Generally, any information uploaded to mycase.com was potentially accessed, and information has been deleted. Information potentially accessed includes client names, social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, phone numbers, email addresses, as well as legally privileged/protected information, including legal documents, case notes, disclosures, financial statements, evidence, photos, invoices, transcripts, trust balances, and attorney-client communications.
How it was Compromised The firm discovered evidence of unauthorized access to mycase.com by an unknown individual or group of individuals. It is unclear how this access was made.
Customers Impacted Clients of Mason Law Firm using mycase.com.
Attribution/Vulnerability Unknown/undisclosed at this time.

https://www.databreaches.net/mason-law-office-notifies-clients-of-hack-involving-mycase-com/

myPersonality app
Information Technology / Lifestyle

Small Business Risk: High (Forensic, Data Loss via GitHub Post, Brand / Reputation Damage, Fines and Damages)

Exploit: Application security misconfiguration resulting in credential-based exploit

Risk to Individuals: High (PII, Psychological Characteristics & Profile,)

What you need to know: The developers of the personality app failed committed several major blunders in this case.

  1. Poor website/application security allowed for easy and unmonitored access to their website and underlying datasets.
  2. They failed to notice that their data set had been sitting out in the open for 4 years.
  3. The data stored within the platform was easily unkeyed and de-anonymized.

myPersonality app

Date Occurred/Discovered Exact dates unknown – 2014 – 2018
Date Disclosed 5/14/18
Data Compromised The data was highly sensitive, revealing personal details of Facebook users, such as the results of psychological tests. The credentials gave access to the “Big Five” personality scores of 3.1 million users. These scores are used in psychology to assess people’s characteristics, such as conscientiousness, agreeableness and neuroticism. The credentials also allowed access to 22 million status updates from over 150,000 users, alongside details such as age, gender and relationship status from 4.3 million people.
How it was Compromised Academics at the University of Cambridge distributed the data from the personality quiz app myPersonality to hundreds of researchers via a website with insufficient security provisions, which led to it being left vulnerable to access for four years. Each user in the data set was given a unique ID, which tied together data such as their age, gender, location, status updates, results on the personality quiz and more. With that much information, de-anonymizing the data can be done very easily.
Customers Impacted 3 million users of the app
Attribution/Vulnerability Publicly available credentials allowed access to the data. For the last four years, a working username and password has been available online that could be found from a single web search. Anyone who wanted access to the data set could have found the key to download it in less than a minute. The publicly available username and password were sitting on the code-sharing website GitHub. They had been passed from a university lecturer to some students for a course project on creating a tool for processing Facebook data. Uploading code to GitHub is very common in computer science as it allows others to reuse parts of your work, but the students included the working login credentials too.

 

https://www.databreaches.net/mypersonality-app-data-leak-exposed-intimate-details-of-3m-users/

https://www.newscientist.com/article/2168713-huge-new-facebook-data-leak-exposed-intimate-details-of-3m-users/

 

The Pillars of Cyber Security Explained

Network Security

The cyber threat landscape changes on a daily basis.  There is no one size fits all solution and there are no magic bullets. It has been said that the price of liberty is eternal vigilance. The same holds true for cyber security. There are four pillars of security- end point protection, perimeter protection, monitoring and end user vigilance.

They say that those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it, and matters of cyber security are no exception. Threats will often follow trends, and so by reviewing what has happened in the past, we may be able to glean some insight into what will be important in the future.

If the first half of 2018 was any indication, there are a few things that will be of most concern to IT professionals and end users. My friend and colleague, Tommy Vaughn from Central Technology Solutions, provided a lot of the inspiration for this post!

Ensure All Endpoints Have Appropriate Security Measures

It’s staggering to consider how many end points any given business could have, each providing a route in for threat actors. Between company-provided devices, personal mobile devices, and Internet of Things devices, there are plenty of opportunities for a company to be attacked.

As a result, as 2018 progresses, businesses must be aware of what threats exist, as well as better prepared to protect themselves against them. This includes strategies that ensure your organization’s digital protections are properly maintained while remaining cognizant of physical security best practices. Pairing encryption and access control, as well as mobile device management, can create a much safer environment for your data.

Cover your 6’s

Your network needs to have not just the firewall appliance – but a comprehensive suite of tools that can help you recognize suspicious behavior. It is more than just a static device. It has to be paired with analytical tools as a service that can give you insight into your network. Additionally, an external firewall or web filtering service can protect you from unseen threats on a multitude of levels. It is not just hardware and software anymore. You need to have the resources available to alert you to threats, cut down the noise from repeated alerts and investigate areas that you should not be in yourself – e.g. the Dark Web.

Get Back to Basics With Security and End User Education – Cyberawareness Training

While it may sometimes be tempting to focus on the massive attacks and breaches that too-often dominate the headlines, no business can afford to devote their full attention to those vulnerabilities and overlook the more common threats. This is primarily because once they do, they become exponentially more vulnerable to these attacks through their lack of awareness and preparation.

Part of being prepared for the threats of the coming weeks and months is to make sure that your employees are also up to speed where security is concerned. Educating them on best practices before enforcing these practices can help to shore up any vulnerabilities you may have and maintain your network security. This includes restricting employee access to certain websites, requiring passwords of appropriate strength, and encouraging your employees to be mindful of exactly what they’re clicking on. A comprehensive program of cyberwareness training- delivered to the employees over the course of a year in small incremental sessions is key. Use controlled mistakes as teachable moments to correct dangerous behavior. Once trained, your employees become your “human firewall”. As they say with shampoo, “rinse and repeat”. Often.

Continuing to Improve Security Measures

Finally, it is important to remember that implementing security features isn’t a one-time activity. Threats will grow and improve in order to overcome existing security measures, and so if they are going to remain effective, these security measures must be improved as well.

While regulatory requirements can provide an idea of what security a network should feature, they shouldn’t be seen as the endpoint. Instead, those requirements should be the bare minimum that you implement, along with additional measures to supplement them.

We are here to help. If you would like to explore the options of a completely managed firewall, DNS filtering, or cyber awareness training- we can assist. First- get a baseline of where your organization is at. We have a suite of FREE tools that can help show you your susceptibility to phishing, spoofing and whether your organization’s credentials are for sale on the Dark Web.  We can also do an onsite security assessment to analyze your network’s vulnerabilities.

For your free tools, please visit:  http://downloads.primetelecommunications.com/CyberAwareness-Free-Tools or give us a call at 847 329 8600.

We are your managed technology solutions professionals and we are here to listen!

Prime Telecommunications Partners with ID Agent to Heighten Cybersecurity

 

Prime Telecommunications, a leader in managed technology services, announced today that the company has partnered with ID Agent, to enhance the security of SMBs (small to mid-sized businesses) across the nation. ID Agent and this partnership will enable business owners, to prevent identity theft and thwart cybercriminals from gaining access to sensitive data.

“We’re thrilled to announce this partnership. It’s going to have a huge effect on the business owners we serve,” stated Vic Levinson, President of Prime Telecommunications. “This partnership allows business owners to get a very clear and immediate picture of how their cybersecurity is currently performing. When owners are made aware of the threats and risks that are facing their business, they’re capable of bringing in the right infrastructure to protect themselves from cyber-attacks. This partnership is so important because it gives a very clear picture of the company’s risks.”

The partnership between Prime Telecommunications and ID Agent will combine human and sophisticated Dark Web intelligence with search capabilities to identify, analyze and proactively monitor an organization’s compromised or stolen employee and customer data. Business owners will receive real-time alerts, so they can focus on running their organizations. This partnership will not only allow businesses to monitor the dark side of the web, but it also provides the option to monitor an organization’s supply chain, third party partners and vendors that may have access to sensitive data, as well.

“At the end of the day it’s all about protecting employees who don’t realize the threats they face when executing their day-to-day responsibilities,” added Levinson. “Employees who spend time browsing the Internet, who share their email passwords freely, or use unsecured, cloud-based tools to do their work may not necessarily realize all of the potential vulnerabilities facing their network. We consider it to be our duty to educate the marketplace on these types of solutions to prevent as many cyberattacks from happening as possible.”

 

About ID Agent

ID Agent provides Dark Web monitoring and identity theft protection solutions, available exclusively through the reseller channel, to private and public organizations and millions of individuals at risk of cyber incidents. Its flagship product, Dark Web ID, delivers Dark Web intelligence to identify, analyze and monitor for compromised or stolen employee and customer data, mitigating exposure to enterprise clients’ most valuable asset – their digital identity. The company’s SpotLight ID provides personal identity protection and restoration for employees and customers while enhancing their overall cybersecurity awareness as well as further safeguarding corporate systems.