Influence operations of various kinds continue to romp through social media as social networking platforms grapple (under election-driven scrutiny) with the inherent difficulty of content moderation and various other alternative forms of rumor control. Bitdefender and other security companies have been tracking information operations serving up fake news and other forms of propaganda. The focus is naturally enough on next week's US midterm elections, but influence campaigns have been active in Brazil, the UK, and elsewhere.
Recorded Future and McAfee have released their study of Kraken Cryptor, with particular attention devoted to how the ransomware is distributed through a black-market affiliate scheme.
Another strain of ransomware, SamSam, which crippled Atlanta earlier this year, is being tracked by Symantec, which concludes that SamSam is being used mostly against US targets.
The US Department of Justice yesterday released an unsealed grand jury indictment of ten Chinese nationals, at least two of them serving intelligence officers, charging them with industrial espionage against at least thirteen US companies in the aerospace sector. The activities revealed in the indictment show the Ministry of State Security's adherence to classic forms of agent recruiting and handling.
The US Geological Survey's Inspector General found the source of a major malware infestation that propagated across the Interior Department agency: an employee used his Government device to surf through some nine-thousand pages of adult content. One could see maybe a slip here or there, perhaps a baker's dozen of moments of weakness, but nine thousand, wow, that seems like supererogation.