Facebook and Instagram's In-App Browser Exploits Expose User Privacy Concerns

Facebook’s collection and sale of user data for advertising purposes took a huge hit when Apple introduced its App Tracking Transparency (ATT) feature, with Facebook projecting that it will lose out on $10 billion in revenue this year. However, it appears that Meta, Facebook’s parent company, may still have some behavior tracking tricks up its sleeve. New research shows that the Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger mobile apps inject a custom script through their in-app browsers. Some mobile apps open links in an in-app browser, rather than opening them in the user's default browser app....

Facebook Finally Gets Behind End-To-End Encryption For Messenger Chats

It has been a long time coming, but the tech giant Meta has finally realized that its users might just want a little bit of privacy. As of August 11th, it has started testing end-to-end encryption for the Messenger portion of its popular social media platform, Facebook. In a Messenger News blog post, Facebook has stated that it is currently testing secure storage on Messenger, which means that backups for the messages will also be encrypted. In addition to this, they are testing end-to-end encryption in its chat in general. The secure storage enforces that you have the ability to back up your Facebook...

Cloudflare Details How It Thwarted The Same Smishing Attack That Stung Twilio

Cloudflare says that it was hit by the same smishing (sms phishing) attack that recently resulted in a user data breach at Twilio. However, unlike Twilio, Cloudflare managed to prevent the attack from escalating to a data breach thanks to its strong security measures. While the attackers managed to steal login credentials from Cloudflare employees, they were unable to use any of these credentials to access Cloudflare’s internal systems because the company’s employees are required to use physical security keys during the login process. As the attackers did not have access to those physical...

AMD's Zen Architecture Is Vulnerable To A New Insidious SMT Security Flaw

Researchers have detailed the SQUIP attack, which is particularly worrisome for users of AMD Zen 1, Zen 2 and Zen 3 processors. Researchers were able measure the precise degree of Scheduler Queue Usage (i.e., occupancy) via Interference Probing, giving the attack its name. Using this technique, it was possible in tests to recover a full RSA-4096 encryption key from a user on a co-located virtual machine (VM) and co-located process. SQUIP is claimed by researchers from the Graz University of Technology, the Georgia Institute of Technology, and the Lamarr Security Research Center to be the first...

Microsoft Patches DogWalk Zero-Day Flaw That Cruised Past Windows Defenses

Microsoft has finally released a security update that addresses a zero-day vulnerability that went unpatched for more than two years. The vulnerability, known as DogWalk, appears in the national vulnerability index as CVE-2022-34713. Microsoft has assigned the vulnerability a high severity rating of 7.8. The company’s security advisory confirms that the vulnerability has been exploited in the wild, prompting the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to add the vulnerability to its known exploited vulnerabilities catalog and require federal agencies under its jurisdiction...

Start-Up Wants To Give Android Users 'Pretty Good Phone Privacy' To Stop Carrier Tracking

There is widespread concern over the amount of personal data siphoned off by Google, Facebook, and other big tech companies, but that's nothing compared to what your mobile carrier knows. A startup called Invisiv aims to address that with a new beta of its mobile data service. With Pretty Good Phone Privacy (PGPP), you can get unlimited mobile data with (allegedly) no location tracking. According to Invisiv, your carrier's towers collect data from every phone that connects, including a unique identifier known as the IMSI. This ID allows carriers to track your location, a cache of data that they...

Phishing Campaign Hooks Twilio Communications Platform, Catches Customer Data

If we’ve learned anything from reporting on phishing attacks, it’s that no company, organization, or institution is immune from becoming the victim of one. Even the US Department of Defense recently fell victim to a $23.5 million phishing scam. If anything, larger organizations simply make for larger and more attractive targets, particularly when those organizations are entrusted with substantial amounts of customer data. Speaking of which, Twilio, a major communications platform that services Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) integrations, announced over the weekend that it was hit...

Login Flow Faux Pas Enabled Twitter's 5 Million Account Data Leak That Sold For $30K

We put a lot of faith in the prospect that our information is secure. Unfortunately, this is often just not the case. It is not hard for hackers and security ne'er-do-wells to get access to peoples' accounts when they use weak passwords incorporating little more than birthdates and pet names. This is especially true when social media accounts open for public viewing and users unwisely respond to those messages that include items like a chart of answers based on birth dates. You may think you are discovering your "adult-actor" name for a quick laugh but are really divulging the first street you...

Amazon Sucks Up iRobot In Merger With Bigger Implications Than Cleaning House

Amazon published a press release this morning announcing that it has entered into a merger agreement with iRobot, the company best known for its Roomba line of robot vacuum cleaners. So long as the deal receives shareholder and regulatory approval, Amazon will acquire iRobot for a $61 per share, totaling approximately $1.7 billion. The merger will leave iRobot’s current CEO, Colin Angle, in that position. Angle said the following about the acquisition: “Amazon shares our passion for building thoughtful innovations that empower people to do more at home, and I cannot think of a better...

Emergency Alert System Security Flaws Leave Us Vulnerable To Faked Broadcasts Warns FEMA

The US Government’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) maintains a list of exploited vulnerabilities and releases notices urging organizations, particularly government agencies and contractors, to patch said vulnerabilities. However, CISA isn’t the only one looking out for US infrastructure. Ken Pyle, an independent cybersecurity researcher, is raising alarms about a set of vulnerabilities in the country’s emergency alert infrastructure. Back in 2019, Pyle found a set of vulnerabilities in the software used by TV and radio networks to transmit emergency alerts....

North Korean Hackers Used A Stealthy Browser Extension To Snoop Emails

It is always a good idea to secure your online accounts with a strong password and two-factor authentication, but even that might not stop a new piece of malware discovered by security firm Volexity. According to the company's threat research group, North Korea has been slurping up sensitive emails using a clever (but very malicious) Chrome browser extension dubbed "SHARPEXT." You probably are not important enough to be targeted by this malware, and that's a good thing—North Korea has been at it for a year before anyone noticed. Volexity reports that SHARPEXT is targeting organizations in...

Heads-Up, These Are The Apps Malware Authors Most Often Impersonate

Malware campaigns employ different techniques to smuggle malicious software onto computing devices without the notice of users or anti-virus systems. Threat actors who develop and distribute malware frequently rely on various forms of mimicry to take advantage of users’ trust in legitimate websites, services, and applications. Phishing attacks can direct users to download pages that appear to be part of familiar and trusted websites, but actually distribute trojans designed to look like popular apps. VirusTotal, an online service that analyzes over two million files and websites a day by...

Ransomware Gang Behind Colonial Pipeline Attack Claims Another Major Victim

In May of last year, Colonial Pipeline was struck by a ransomware attack, prompting the Colonial Pipeline Company to take certain systems offline in an attempt to contain the attack. As a result, all pipeline operations were temporarily halted, shutting off the flow of fuel to the eastern seaboard. Shortly thereafter, the FBI confirmed that the Russian ransomware gang DarkSide had perpetrated the attack. The ransomware attack drew significant national and international attention as a significant infrastructure cyberattack. Fuel shortages developed in certain areas along the East Coast as concerned...

These Sinister Apps On Google Play Are Laced With Android Banking Malware, Delete ASAP

Google is engaged in a never ending game of cat and mouse with threat actors on its Play Store who employ different techniques to sneak malware-ridden apps onto the app store. We fairly regularly write about newly discovered batches of malicious apps that went unrecognized as such long enough to infect hundreds of thousands to even millions of Android devices. Malware found on the Play Store often steals sensitive information, including text messages, contact lists, banking credentials, and device information, from unsuspecting users. The presence of this persistent threat on the Google Play Store...

How Hackers Are Getting Around Microsoft's Office Macro Blocking

Macros can be highly useful tools in Microsoft Office. Most Microsoft Office macros use Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) or Excel 4.0 macros (XLM). These programming and macro languages have a surprising amount of access to system resources on Windows machines, especially considering they only run from within Microsoft Office. The benefit to these macros is to simplify complex functionality, such as automation in Microsoft Excel or field validation in forms that may have been integrated into a Microsoft Word document, to name a few. Despite their usefulness, however, macros are often used...

Ransomware Payments Plummet As Fewer Victims Cough Up Crypto To Hackers

Ransomware can be both disruptive and costly for its victims. A recent report found that the total downtime resulting from ransomware attacks in 2021 cost schools a whopping $3.56 billion. The sudden encryption of data on computer systems critical to an organization’s regular operations presents a major problem when decryption tools are not publicly available. Ransomware gangs leverage the disruptions and costs inflicted by ransomware to extort money from their victims by offering to decrypt effected data in exchange for a ransom. Ransomware presents a social dilemma for current and...

These Malware Infested Android Apps Were Installed 10M Times, Delete Them Now

It seems these days that security researchers are sounding the alarm on malicious Androids apps in Google Play at an alarming rate. So it goes again with a fresh reporting highlighting over two dozen Android apps packaged with malware, and which have collectively been downloaded and installed 10 million times. Suffice to say, if you downloaded any of these, you should delete them right away. The new list comes courtesy of Dr. Web, which noted that despite decreases in the prevalence of the Android.Spy.4498 trojan and Android.HiddenAds adware, these malicious apps have the biggest footprint among...

How This QBot Banking Trojan Is Exploiting Window's Calculator With Malware

Malware spammers have been sending out emails that leverage a legitimate copy of the Windows Calculator app to sideload malware. This is yet another cunning ploy by cyber threat actors, however the victim would have to willingly go through several processes to fall prey to the QBot Banking Trojan scheme. Below, we will talk about the characteristics of this malware, and how it seeks to infect a victim's computer. In turn, this knowledge should help you recognize similar suspicious emailed malspam (malware spam). As per our headline, threat actors are currently attempting to spread the Qbot malware...

An Entire Canadian Town Is Being Extorted By Ransomware Cyber Criminals

Ransomware attacks have been on the rise. This time around, the small Ontario, Canada town of St. Marys has been targeted. The ransomware organization behind the attack seems to be LockBit. So far though, no ransom has been paid. The town itself claims that most city functions are still operational and staff are still working and getting paid. Upon visiting the official web site of the town visitors are greeted with a large red box containing the following quote. "The Town of St. Marys is currently investigating a cyber security incident that locked our internal server and encrypted our data. We...

These Malicious Android Apps On Google Play Infected 300K Devices, Delete Them Now

It's that time again, time for the listing of apps that you might have downloaded that contain malware or methods in which to plant malware on your phone. Specifically for those who utilize Android and the Google Play Store these apps flew under the radar just long enough to wreak havoc on at least 300,000 devices. We sure hope your device isn't one, but we'll have the list of apps for you below. These apps most commonly contain malware that is part of the Joker family. This family of malware includes methods of stealing SMS messages, contact lists, and device information. Sometimes it goes as...

Beware Of Roaming Mantis Malware Phishing Campaign Preying On Android And iOS Users

While malware and phishing are two different kinds of cyberattacks, threat actors sometimes use both methods in malicious campaigns. A threat actor known as Roaming Mantis appears to be doing exactly that in a new campaign documented by researchers at the cybersecurity firm SEKOIA. Roaming Mantis has previously targeted users in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Germany, France, the UK, and the US, distributing the MoqHao Android malware, also known as XLoader. The researchers estimate that this new campaign has compromised around 70,000 Android devices belonging to French users. Similar to a spyware...

Google's Updated Android App Data Privacy Policy Puts Developers On The Honor System

Near the end of 2020, Apple introduced a dedicated app privacy section to the App Store, requiring developers to disclose what user information is linked to users’ identities and used to track them. Then, in May of 2021, Google announced that a similar feature was in the works for its Play Store. Almost a year later, Google unveiled the new data safety section intended to provide users with information regarding not only what data apps collect and share, but also how apps and the companies behind them secure that data. When Google revealed the data safety feature in April of this year, the...

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