Operation Groundbait continues to chum for influential meat fishermen in eastern Ukraine. Don’t be too quick with attribution—hybrid war is rarely obvious—but the targets seem to be, generally speaking, pro-Russian. ESET is tracking the campaign.
One associates information operations in social media with ISIS. But don’t overlook the Chinese government. A study outlines the role played by the “50-centers” (so named for the rumored fifty cents a post they’re paid). Their piecework is estimated to churn out about 488 million posts annually. The content is propaganda; the audience is largely domestic.
Phineas Phisher remains on the hacktivist stage, now with an exposé of alleged brutality by Catalan police. He’s also said to have taken down a police union server.
Ransomware holds its place as businesses’ principal threat. But some good news arrives: ESET took a direct approach and asked TeslaCrypt’s proprietors for their key. They gave it up, said they were sorry, and told Bratislava they were closing up shop. One may doubt the remorse, but the key seems genuine.
Conficker, patched by Microsoft in 2008, is still around. Check Point says the worm was implicated in one in every six identifiable attacks last month. (It doesn’t have to be a zero-day to work.)
Investigation suggests a Bangladesh Bank official’s compromised computer was used in the SWIFT-related hack. The Bank of England tells UK financial institutions to buck up the security of their interactions with SWIFT.
The US House wants to make Cyber Command a Unified Combatant Command.