US authorities note with displeasure that Russian ships are positioned near, and displaying an interest in, undersea cables. Cutting or tapping such cables goes back a century, but the current economic prominence of rapid data exchange over such cables makes the prospect of interfering with them more worrisome than ever.
Observers continue to note ISIS pre-eminence in information operations over opponents who simply don't get the blended appeal of transcendence and nihilism.
The TalkTalk hack (and "TalkTalk" has joined "Target," "Sony," "Ashley Madison," and "OPM" as a name now shorthand for a breach) has become the biggest current story in cyber. The original preliminary attribution of the attack to a "Russian Islamist organization" (conflating two of cyberspace's bigger bugbears) convinces few: the attack seems now to have been a straight-up criminal caper. A number of groups have claimed responsibility for the attack, and TalkTalk has received a ransom demand from one of them. The asking price seems oddly lowballed — just £80 thousand, payable in Bitcoin — but there are signs that some criminals are preparing to offer stolen data on the AlphaBay black market.
TalkTalk thinks damage to its 4 million customers may be less severe than feared, but the company's facing criticism for both security practices and breach response. The episode has prompted calls for closer government regulation; such calls are unlikely to remain confined to the UK.
Speaking of Ashley Madison, reports surface of an ongoing breach-related extortion campaign.
South Korea's actively recruiting white hats to its cyber forces.