Cyber Variety

A lot of people talk about the increasing frequency and intensity of cyber attacks these days. Something people aren’t talking about enough is the difference between one type of cyber attack vs another. I’m always hearing “Company X has been hacked!” and yet not one seems to go into specifics.

If I asked you “Are cyber attacks which target finances on the rise? or are they on the decline?” I’d bet that the majority of you would say that these attacks are on the rise, and for good reason. More and more the media has been covering cyber attacks because the general public is more invested into technology than ever before. As of January 2014, 58% of Americans have a smart phone. More people now have smart phones than those who don’t in the United States. That is amazing. So, I think it’s time people start to look at what the cyber attacks are doing.

Financial attacks are on the decline since 2014. Why? It’s probably a mix of several reasons: Shift of focus by the hackers, better security and law enforcement, large focus attacks are shifting to be more important than small spread attacks.

No matter the reasons, we should be thinking about this. If we don’t understand why a certain trend in computer security is happening then how can we possibly expect to prevent it?

Sources: http://www.pewinternet.org/fact-sheets/mobile-technology-fact-sheet/

http://securelist.com/analysis/kaspersky-security-bulletin/68720/financial-cyber-threats-in-2014-things-changed/

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Cyber Variety

Smart Everything

Every now and then I’ll stumble upon yet another article talking about the cons to all of the newly introduced “smart” products. “Smart” wallets, lights, appliances, etc etc. The list goes on. The most recent smart product con I was reading about was by none other than Keurig.

http://www.theverge.com/2015/2/5/7986327/keurigs-attempt-to-drm-its-coffee-cups-totally-backfired

For those who haven’t read about this stuff, basically what happened is this:

Keurig releases new product with “innovative technology”.

Users eventually discover that the “innovative technology” which is supposed to make life easier for them actually makes things difficult and mostly just expensive.

People find work-arounds for this new technology.

Keurig tries to prevent the work-arounds.

Keurig gets a bunch of terrible press.

Well this crap keeps happening and I think it’s the reason computer security jobs continue to grow and become more important in society.

http://www.heise.de/ct/artikel/Beemer-Open-Thyself-Security-vulnerabilities-in-BMW-s-ConnectedDrive-2540957.html

Just a few ago people were hacking into the security vulnerabilities of BMW cars, finding ways to take over the vehicle. A car is not a coffee machine. This is scary stuff.

Smart Everything

Hacking into wifi routers

It’s always interesting to step back and look at the lack of security in wireless internet connections. Even as I’m driving around in my neighborhood, I can detect a ton of completely open (or might as well be open) wifi connections all over the place.

This got me thinking about how difficult it is to get into a “secure” wifi router. That’s when I stumbled upon this post: http://www.xexexe.cz/2015/02/bruteforcing-tp-link-routers-with.html

This shows step by step, the methods used to attack a tp-link router. Simple scripts can go so far.

Hacking into wifi routers