• GDPR Fines Surge 39% Over Past Year Despite #COVID19The past year has seen double-digit increases in the value of GDPR fines imposed by regulators and the volume of breaches notified to regulators, according to a new analysis by DLA Piper.The international law firm said that €158.5m ($192m, £141m) in fines was imposed since January 28 2020, a 39% increase on the previous 20-month period since the law came into force in May 2018.Breach notifications surged by 19%, the second




  • No US Trial for Irish Hacker

    No US Trial for Irish Hacker The United States has withdrawn an extradition request for an Irish hacker convicted of breaking into virtual wallets to steal millions of dollars in cryptocurrency.Conor Freeman was identified by US Homeland Security as one of at least five co-conspirators involved in a string of digital thefts that robbed multiple victims of their life savings in 2018.Freeman was arrested at his Dublin home in May 2019 on a warrant issued by US authorities. Following his arres

  • EEMA Appoints Digital Identity Expert to Board of ManagementEEMA, the leading independent European think tank focused on identity, privacy and trust, has announced the appointment of Steve Pannifer to its board of management. Pannifer, who is chief operations officer at Consult Hyperion, is renowned for his expertise in the field of digital identity.Joining Consult Hyperion back in 1999, Pannifer has worked on numerous identity and payments initiatives for card schemes, banks and government

  • Health Insurer Fined $5.1m Over Data BreachAn American health insurer has agreed to pay $5.1m to the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to settle potential violations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy and Security Rules.The agreement entered into by Excellus Health Plan, Inc. relates to a data breach that lasted 17 months and affected over 9.3 million people. Excellus is




  • NSA Appoints Cyber DirectorThe United States National Security Agency has announced the appointment of Roy Joyce as the new leader of its Cybersecurity Directorate. Joyce will take over from Anne Neuberger, who was first to lead the NSA’s Cybersecurity Directorate when it was established in October 2019.Neuberger was recently appointed Deputy National Security Advisor for Cyber and Emerging Technology for the National Security Council (NSC) by the incoming Biden administration.&nb

  • MoD Experiences 18% Growth in Personal Data Loss Incidents

    MoD Experiences 18% Growth in Personal Data Loss Incidents The UK’s Ministry of Defense (MoD) experienced an 18% rise in personal data loss incidents in the financial year 2019/20, according to official figures analyzed by the Parliament Street Think Tank.The UK government’s defense department revealed there were 546 reported incidents of personal data loss during the last financial year, up from 463 in 2018/19. Seven of the incidents were reported to the Information Commissione

  • Thales and TT Electronics Partner to Enable OT Cybersecurity Initiatives and ResearchMultinational technology company Thales and global provider of engineered electronics for performance critical applications TT Electronics have announced a partnership to enable the development of operational technology cybersecurity initiatives and research.These programs will be delivered out of the National Digital Exploitation Center (NDEC) in South Wales, which offers cyber-skills and knowledge to the regio

  • Joker’s Stash Carding Site to Close in FebruaryThe largest carding marketplace on the dark web has announced it is shutting down for good, although experts warned that this will have little impact on the overall cybercrime economy.The administrator of the Joker’s Stash site posted the news on Friday, claiming that the marketplace would remain open until February 15 this year before they go on a “well-deserved retirement.”Experts at threat intelligence firm Gemini Adv




  • Environmental Regulator Suffers Ransomware Blow

    Environmental Regulator Suffers Ransomware BlowThe Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) has warned that it could take a “significant period” of time before systems and services are fully restored after it was hit by ransomware on Christmas Eve.In a lengthy update late last week, the agency claimed that “a number” of its IT systems will remain “badly affected for some time,” and in some cases will need to be replaced completely.“The agency confir

  • Leaked #COVID19 Vaccine Data “Manipulated” to Mislead PublicOfficial COVID-19 vaccine data stolen and leaked online by threat actors had been changed prior to publication in what could be a deliberate attempt to sow disinformation, a medical regulator has claimed.The European Medicines Agency (EMA) first revealed the data breach back in December. Although at the time it refused to clarify what was stolen, German biotechnology company BioNTech revealed that it was one of the firms aff

  • Florida Man Cyberstalked Survivor of Murder Attempt

    Florida Man Cyberstalked Survivor of Murder AttemptA man from Florida has admitted cyberstalking a woman who survived a violent attack in her childhood that left another young girl dead. Alvin Willie George of Cross City pleaded guilty to two counts of cyberstalking related to the online harassment of the survivor and her sisters. According to court records, the victim was in a Texas bedroom with another girl in December 1999 when an assailant entered and attacked the two fri

  • Women in Cybersecurity Mid-Atlantic Partners with CMMC COEThe Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification Center of Excellence (CMMC COE) yesterday announced a Memorandum of Understanding with the Women in Cybersecurity (WiCyS) Mid-Atlantic affiliate.The executed MOU creates a cooperative agreement between the two parties to partner in the furthering of their missions and objectives around the adoption, use, and expansion of CMMC-based cybersecurity practices for the US Department of De

  • UK Accidentally Deletes 150k Arrest RecordsThe UK government is investigating a technical issue that led to 150,000 arrest records’ being accidentally wiped from nationwide police databases. The unintentional erasure, reported initially by The Times, is believed to have been caused by human error and defective code that earmarked the wrong files for deletion.Over 150,000 fingerprint records, DNA records, and arrest history records were lost as a result of the glitch. One

  • NCSC Reveals New Solution to Protect Remote Public Sector WorkersThe UK’s National Cyber Security Center (NCSC) has outlined the creation of a new protective domain name service (PDNS) solution in partnership with Nominet, the official registry for UK domain names.The service, named PDNS Digital Roaming, is designed to enhance the security of public sector staff working from home as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The free at the point of use app will extend the protection offered

  • #CES2021: AI and Quantum Technologies Set to Disrupt Cybersecurity IndustryArtificial intelligence (AI) and quantum are set to be the next major technology disruptors and will have a profound impact on the cybersecurity sector, according to speakers in a session at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2021.Advancements in these areas are likely to lead to new opportunities for cyber-criminals to leverage attacks, but conversely, can also enable the development of stronger cybersecurity defen

  • NSA: DNS over HTTPS Provides “False Sense of Security”The US National Security Agency (NSA) has warned enterprises that adoption of encrypted DNS services can lead to a false sense of security and even disrupt their own DNS-monitoring tools.DNS over HTTPS (DoH) has become an increasingly popular way to improve privacy and integrity by protecting DNS traffic between a client and a DNS resolver from unauthorized access. This can help to prevent eavesdropping and manipulation of DNS tra

  • Facebook Sues Devs of Alleged Data-Scraping Chrome ExtensionsFacebook is suing two European developers for allegedly violating its terms of service by scraping user data.Legal action has been filed in Portugal by Facebook and Facebook Ireland against two individuals working for application/extension development company Oink and Stuff.The firm claims its software products, available for Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Opera and Android, have over one million active users.However, the two misled users into

  • Automated “Classiscam” Operation Made $6.5m in 2020An e-commerce “scam-as-a-service” operation tried-and-tested in Russia has expanded to multiple European countries in 2020, making cybercrime groups over $6.5m in the process, Group-IB has warned.The Singapore-based cybersecurity company claimed in a new report that “Classiscam” first appeared in Russia in the summer of 2019, but soon migrated west and hit a peak of activity over 2020 as remote workers su

  • Fujitsu: High Risk of #COVID19 Vaccine Disinformation CampaignsThere is a high risk of disinformation campaigns designed to spread panic and fear about the COVID-19 crisis, according to IT firm Fujitsu. In particular, it expects social engineering attacks to focus on fuelling uncertainty and doubt surrounding the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines as they begin to be rolled out across the world.The company said that both criminal gangs and nation state actors will focus on controversial aspects

  • Convicted Hacker Allegedly Commits Fraud While Awaiting ReleaseA Kosovan hacker, granted compassionate release after being convicted of providing personally identifiable information of over 1,000 US government personnel to ISIS, has been charged with committing further crimes while in federal prison.The US sentenced Ardit Ferizi to 20 years in prison in September 2016 after the hacker admitted accessing a protected computer without authorization and providing material support to a

  • 2020 Saw 6% Rise in Number of CVEs ReportedNew analysis of the 2020 vulnerability and threat landscape has found that the total number of Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVEs) reported last year was 6% higher than the total reported in 2019.A year-in-review report from Tenable’s Security Response Team found that 18,358 CVEs were reported in 2020, while only 17,305 were reported the previous year. While the increase between 2019 and 2020 may seem slight, the team found

  • Hy-Vee Data Breach Settlement Proposed

    Hy-Vee Data Breach Settlement ProposedA preliminary settlement agreement regarding a data breach that impacted customers of Iowa-based grocery store chain Hy-Vee has been proposed. Hy-Vee launched an investigation after detecting unauthorized activity on some of its payment processing systems on July 29, 2019.The investigation found that malware designed to access and steal payment card data from cards used on point-of-sale (POS) devices had been installed at certain Hy-Vee fuel p

  • DOD’s Autonomous Vessel Sails Through Transit Test, Participates in Exercise Dawn Blitz

    DefenceTalkDefenceTalkA Ghost Fleet Overlord unmanned surface vessel, part of a partnership between the Defense Department’s Strategic Capabilities Office and the Navy, recently traveled a…

  • NTT DATA and Conferma Pay Partner to Deliver Secure, Virtual Payment Comms to Hotels

    NTT DATA and Conferma Pay Partner to Deliver Secure, Virtual Payment Comms to HotelsGlobal IT innovator NTT DATA and payments technology provider Conferma Pay have announced a partnership to bring secure, digital virtual payment communications to hotels.The news comes at a time when more and more companies are seeking to implement contact-free payment processes to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 whilst also bolstering payment security and safety.NTT DATA and Conferma Pay said they have combin

  • Ring Rolls-Out End-to-End Encryption to Bolster Privacy

    Ring Rolls-Out End-to-End Encryption to Bolster PrivacyControversial connected device company Ring has added video end-to-end encryption (E2EE) to some of its products in a bid to boost user privacy and security.The Amazon-owned maker of smart doorbells first flagged the move last autumn, but will begin the roll-out this week as part of a “technical preview.“By default, Ring already encrypts videos when they are uploaded to the cloud (in transit) and stored on Ring’s servers (a

  • #CES2021: Microsoft President Calls for Collaboration to Counter Growing Cyber-Threats Brad Smith, president of Microsoft, warned of the increasing cyber-threats to society as technology plays a more powerful role in our lives during his keynote address at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2021.While he outlined the potentially enormous benefits advancements in technologies offer, including in areas like sustainability, the cyber-threats being faced are correspondingly becoming increasing

  • CISA Warns of Cloud Attacks Exploiting Poor Cyber-HygieneA US cybersecurity agency is urging organizations to improve their cyber-hygiene after warning of multiple successful attacks targeting cloud services used by remote workers.The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) revealed in a report yesterday that attackers are increasingly targeting corporate and personal laptops with phishing, brute force login attempts and possibly a “pass-the-cookie” attack t

  • European Regulator: #COVID19 Vaccine Data Leaked Online

    European Regulator: #COVID19 Vaccine Data Leaked OnlineThe European Medicines Agency (EMA) has confirmed that cyber-criminals who raided the organization in December have leaked some of those documents online.In a brief statement on Tuesday, it noted that the docs “related to COVID-19 medicines and vaccines belonging to third parties.“The agency continues to fully support the criminal investigation into the data breach and to notify any additional entities and individuals whose docum

  • Former Florida Official Charged with Cyberstalking The first independent ethics officer to be appointed by the Florida city of Tallahassee has been arrested on cyber-stalking charges. Julie Meadows-Keefe is accused of stalking former city auditor Bert Fletcher, with whom she had an on-off romantic relationship both during and after the time when they both worked for Tallahassee.The State Attorney’s Office charged 51-year-old Meadows-Keefe with the first-degree misdemeanor on Janua

  • Bitcoin Exchange Owner Jailed for Money Laundering The owner of a Bulgarian bitcoin exchange has been sentenced to prison in the United States for his involvement in a transnational multimillion-dollar online auction fraud scheme that conned over 900 Americans out of more than $7m.After a two-week trial in September 2020, a federal jury in Kentucky found Rossen G. Iossifov guilty of one count of conspiracy to commit racketeering and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. O



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