Biz & IT

California man arrested on charges his DDoSes took down candidate’s website

Enlarge US Air Force A California man has been arrested on charges he used distributed denial-of-service attacks to take down the website of a Congressional candidate whose rival employed his wife. Arthur Jan Dam, 32, of Santa Monica, was arrested by FBI agents on Thursday. According to a criminal complaint filed in Los Angeles federal …

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Ars Technicast special edition, part 2: Spotting bad actors inside a company

Enlarge / Artist’s impression of an insider threat stealing your stuff. D-Keine / Getty Images In the second of our series of podcasts on artificial intelligence produced in association with Darktrace, we dive into something a little spookier: the world of “insider threat” detection. Click here for a transcript and click here for an MP3 …

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Anatomy of a dumb spear-phish: Hitting librarians up for Zelle, CashApp cash

Enlarge Sarah Shuda / Flickr Here’s a clue for would-be Internet financial scammers: do not target librarians. They will catch on fast, and you will have wasted your time. Yesterday, the former outgoing chair of the Young Adult Library Services Association’s Alex Awards Committee (and my wife) Paula Gallagher got a very odd email that …

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US natural gas operator shuts down for 2 days after being infected by ransomware

Enlarge Glen Dillon A US-based natural gas facility shut down operations for two days after sustaining a ransomware infection that prevented personnel from receiving crucial real-time operational data from control and communication equipment, the Department of Homeland Security said on Tuesday. Tuesday’s advisory from the DHS’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, or CISA, didn’t identify …

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Hackers exploit critical vulnerability found in ~100,000 WordPress sites

Pixy Hackers are actively exploiting a critical WordPress plugin vulnerability that allows them to completely wipe all website databases and, in some cases, seize complete control of affected sites. The flaw is in the ThemeGrill Demo Importer installed on some 100,000 sites, and it was disclosed over the weekend by Website security company WebARX. By …

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Signal is finally bringing its secure messaging to the masses

Enlarge Getty Images Last month, the cryptographer and coder known as Moxie Marlinspike was getting settled on an airplane when his seatmate, a midwestern-looking man in his 60s, asked for help. He couldn’t figure out how to enable airplane mode on his aging Android phone. But when Marlinspike saw the screen, he wondered for a …

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US government goes all in to expose new malware used by North Korean hackers

Enlarge Jung Yeon-Je/Getty Images The US Pentagon, the FBI, and the Department of Homeland Security on Friday exposed a North Korean hacking operation and provided technical details for seven pieces of malware used in the campaign. The US Cyber National Mission Force, an arm of the Pentagon’s US Cyber Command, said on Twitter that the …

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Nasty Android malware reinfects its targets, and no one knows how

Enlarge A widely circulating piece of Android malware primarily targeting US-based phones used a clever trick to reinfect one of its targets in a feat that stumped researchers as to precisely how it was pulled off. xHelper came to light last May when a researcher from security firm Malwarebytes published this brief profile. Three months …

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Huawei fires back, points to US’ history of spying on phone networks

Enlarge / Huawei sign displayed at CES 2020 in Las Vegas on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2020. Getty Images | Bloomberg Chinese vendor Huawei has provided a longer response to US allegations of spying, claiming that it doesn’t have the spying capability alleged by the US and pointing out that the US itself has a long …

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Rental cars can be remotely started, tracked, and more after customers return them

Enlarge / The screen displayed by FordPass four days after an Enterprise Rent-A-Car customer returned his Ford Mustang. Masamba Sinclair In October, Ars chronicled the story of a man who was able to remotely start, stop, lock, unlock, and track a Ford explorer he rented and returned five months earlier. Now, something almost identical has …

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