Syria's civil war appears to be entering its final stages, and the conflict carries over into information operations in cyberspace. Wired describes the "Assadosphere"—the online supporters of President Assad's regime. Elsewhere in the Middle East the Iranian-inspired Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Cyber Fighters make their promised reappearance, warning they intend to hit five US banks with distributed denial-of-service attacks this week: U.S. Bancorp, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, PNC Financial Services Group and SunTrust are the targets.
Russia's space agency joins NASA and Japan's JAXA in falling victim to cyber attack. (This latest exploit appears to originate in the Republic of Korea.)
The Kelihos botnet is back and updated with new TLD and USB attack capabilities. More details emerge on Tor-cloaked botnet Skynet.
CyberWire readers are doubtless too aware of holiday scams to be easily taken in, but you may have less sophisticated friends and relations. Consider sharing Daily Finance's twelve frauds of Christmas with them.
British researchers find that 007 and Jason Bourne movies have created a despairing public quietism about cyber security: if hacking is so easy, why bother fighting it? BYOD in health care enterprises is found to be "a data breach waiting to happen." A RAND study shows that law enforcement organizations are looking for better secure knowledge management systems. SafeNet's incoming CEO will emphasize cloud services.
Ben Gurion University is establishing a cyber security incubator. Quartz looks for lessons in incubators and other communities of innovation. The European Union agrees to a common patent system.