Latest IT Security News and Updates for the Week

Here’s what has been brewing in the world of IT security this week. We have news about the recently discovered malware called CryptoLocker, Ransomware, Target’s hack, and a small interesting news about Snapchat.


Crime doesn’t pay, but it sure does in case of the CryptoLocker
Discovered in September, the ransomware called CryptoLocker ruffled quite a few feathers in the IT security world. It encrypts user’s data and then demands ransom ($300) to decrypt it. The ransom must be paid within 72 hours post which, the data is lost forever. And it looks like, this nefarious malware has been doing well since it made its entry. It is estimated that the creators of CryptoLocker have been able to rake in as much as $30 million in only 3 months. About 250,000 PCs have been hit by the malware since September. Speculations are, out of the victims of this malware, about 0.4% caved in to its demand and pay the ransom. As of now, this malware is like a terminal disease that has no cure. However, the damage that is causes, does have a prevention – regular backup of important files.  [source:]

Ransomware to go for the Android platform in 2014
As of now, Ransomware such as CrytoLocker are only known to target the Windows platform. But as 2014 ushers in, ransomware attacks against Android phones should also be expected. Unlike the PC ransomware that mainly targets data, mobile ransomware will most likely lock the compromised phone and demand ransom to get it unlocked. This could be because, most users sync their mobile data with some kind of cloud service. It is more likely that users may agree to pay the ransom to get their device unlocked instead of getting a new one. [source:].

Target’s woes aren’t over yet – they are only getting worse
The massive data security breach that got up to 40 million debit and credit card numbers exposed to hackers, seems to be bringing in more bad news for America’s retail giant Target. Reportedly, a Chicago-based woman has filed a class-action lawsuit against the company. That makes about 11 customers who have initiate the same proceeding. However, it is not very likely that these customers may gain the upper hand in this situation. This is because, affected customers won’t be charged for any fraudulent transactions using their card details. []

Snapchat gets a backlash for not listening to Gibson Security’s warnings
Four months ago, Gibson Security, run by an Australian-based group of researchers, notified Snapchat of security holes in their code. Snapchat, however, ignored their work. Now, it seems that the same group has come back with bytes of vengeance. Reportedly, Gibson Security has released a report to the public explaining how Snapchat users’ numbers can be hacked. The group stated that the hack works on iPhone and Android devices. In an interview with Business Insider, the group said that it intends to force companies to beef up their security. Reiterating the motive behind publishing their report, the group stated “It’s a little like a security guard finding an open window in an office building, telling the building owner to close and lock the window and, if ignored for a month or more, telling all interested thieves about the open window and what to steal inside.” Read more about the interview here.

Rajiv Singha

Rajiv Singha

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