Colonial networks Jugular pipeline had to shut down after a major ransomware attack. Transporting 2.5 million barrels per day, the shutdown caused Brent price to rise by 76 cents or 1%, while gasoline was raised by 2%. This could lead to a potential blow to the economy. Working closely with experts, there is no fixed date when the entire network will be operational but a few minor lines between terminals and delivery points are active.
Two groups of hackers, having links to the Chinese govt, used a vulnerability in American networking devices to spy on the USA defence industry, researchers and the devices’ manufacturer claimed. IT firm Ivanti said that the hackers exploited the flaw in Pulse Connect Secure suite of VPN networking devices to spy on “a very limited number of customers.” Ivanti said a fix for the issue will be in early May.
59% of Indian’s have faced cybercrime in the past 12 months, said a Norton Cyber Safety Insights report. The survey was based on the interview of 10,000 people across 10 countries, including 1,000 adults in India. The victims spent 1.3 bn hrs trying to resolve the issue created by cybercrime. 36% of Indians witnessed unauthorised access to an email/ social media account or device in the last one year.
Cyber-attacks have cost Russian firms and citizens up to $49 bn in 2020 as the number of crimes linked to bank cards has shot up by 500%, the country’s largest lender Sberbank said. The private sector remained the most vulnerable as everything from the accounts to financial data and documents was targeted. Over 2.3 mn darknet accounts operating in Russian offer the stolen data. Russians may lose as much as 10 bn roubles from phone fraud this year alone.
62% of the cybercrime complaints lodged in 2020 were related to financial frauds, Delhi police said in a statement. Cops witnessed a rise in incidents of cybercrime during the lockdown. 24% of the complaints were related to online harassment on Social media, while 14 % were about hacking and data theft. Cases were also registered in matters related to tech support, immigration and IRS call centre scams which targetted foreign nationals.
Chinese hackers, based out of Guangdong and Henan provinces, targeted millions of Indians with shopping scams during festival season sales in Oct and Nov, according to Cyberpeace Foundation. The cybercriminals created spurious links on WhatsApp for users to click to participate in contests and win exciting prizes. Some of the scam contests used elements from actual sales on Amazon India and Flipkart to make them look legitimate and trick users.
Cybersecurity agency Kaspersky detected 120 suspicious websites mentioning ‘PlayStation’ in their scams and phishing campaigns. Cyberscam around gaming console increased as Microsoft and Sony launched Xbox X and PS5, respectively this month and together they found mention in half of the malicious activities. PS holds 96% of gaming consoles in India, enabling cybercriminals to use its popularity to luring people to steal private and monetary data.
National Cyber Security Coordinator Lt Gen (Dr) Rajesh Pant said that Cybercrimes caused a loss of Rs 1.25 lakh cr in the country in 2019. He said that cyber threats will continue to rise following the development of smart cities and 5G network rollout. The NCSC said that only a few Indian firms make cybersecurity products and there is a big gap in the sector. Pant said that it is not only apps but there are 15 different attack vectors from where a mobile phone can be hacked.
Microsoft’s Digital Defense Report details the rapidly increasing security threats by nation-state actors from China, Iran, N Korea, S Korea, Russia. Phishing-enabled ransomware attacks are specifically on the rise, followed by attacks on IoT devices. Nation-state actors are using highly sophisticated techniques that allow them to target high-profile individuals/businesses without being caught; eg: using cloud to appear legitimate; it makes tracking difficult.