Nov 25 2012

Become Cyber Secure this Cyber Monday

Category: Information Security,ISO 27kDISC @ 9:50 pm



Black Friday / Cyber Monday


Tips for staying safe this Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday is a marketing term for the Monday after Black Friday, the Friday following Thanksgiving in the United States, created by companies to persuade people to shop online. The term made its debut on November 28, 2005 in a press release entitled “‘Cyber Monday’ Quickly Becoming One of the Biggest Online Shopping Days of the Year.

Cyber Secure this Cyber Monday
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Tags: CyberMonday, Online shopping

Nov 15 2012

Tips for staying safe this Cyber Monday

Category: cyber security,CybercrimeDISC @ 12:52 pm

Cyber Monday deals

Cyber Monday, one of the largest online shopping days of the entire year, is coming November 26. The National Retail Federation estimates that shoppers spent more than $1.2 billion last year, doing more than a third of their holiday shopping online.

The issue? This influx of activity online, often times during business hours on a corporate network, is a holiday in itself for scammers and seasoned hackers.

As much as the bosses may not like it, the shopping on Monday is inevitable. So what should end users be mindful of to protect themselves AND the sensitive data on their personal or corporate networks?

FortiGuard Labs threat researchers, Guillaume Lovet and Derek Manky offer a few security tips to help you stay safe online.

1. Unsolicited e-mails: While it may be tempting to click on an email link that says, “Great Deal on iPads… 50% off!” Be careful! By clicking on that link, you could be taken to a compromised Website that downloads malware onto your computer. That malware can then be used to capture your computer key strokes, download additional malware, such as fake antivirus applications, or simply turn your computer into a spam generator.

What to do: If a deal looks too good to be true? It probably is. If you’re still tempted, simply place your cursor over the link (without clicking on it) and check to make sure the URL listed is where you were intending to go.

2. Nefarious search engine results: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) attacks (also known as search engine poisoning) typically occur during major events and holidays. This time of year, hackers may use search terms such as “Holiday Sale,” “Christmas bargains,” or “Year End Specials.” When a user clicks on the malicious link, they could be taken to a Website where their computer can be immediately compromised.

What to do: Same with the tip above, check the link before you click. Also, make sure if you do go to the site that the content looks relevant to what you searched for, versus lots of keywords globbed together on a page in random sentences

3. Unknown online retailers: If you discover an online store that’s offering unbelievable specials on holiday merchandise, do some digging to make sure it’s a legitimate store and not a false front that will disappear later that day along with your credit card information. And even if they are legitimate, you’ll want to make sure their site hasn’t been unknowingly compromised by SQL injection or other server attacks.

Compromised websites won’t always redirect you to a malicious site, but often will phish or try to surreptitiously install other forms of malware on your computer, such as Trojans, bots, keyloggers and rootkits, which are designed to harm systems and steal personal information.

What to do: Make sure your antivirus system is up-to-date, as well as intrusion prevention to help guard against these exploits. Without them, you may not even know that you’re infected.

4. Beware of friends sharing unsolicited links: Malicious links don’t always come from spam emails. They could come from your closest friend on Facebook or via e-mail whose machine has been unknowingly compromised. The infected machine may have a botnet that’s been programmed to comb through email or Facebook address books and send malicious links to everyone in them. The message might say, “Hey, check out the holiday sale going on here!” or “This place is have a 50% off Christmas sale!” By clicking on the link you could be taken to a malicious Website that installs malware on your system or phishes for your credit card credentials.

What to do: Use common sense. Does your friend normally update you on when sales come up? If you’re not sure, a quick private message or phone call to ask, “Did you mean to send me this?” could save you from compromising your personal (and corporate) sensitive information.

Tags: Credit card, Cyber Monday, National Retail Federation, Online shopping, SQL injection, Website

Dec 04 2009

Five ways to lose your identity

Category: Identity TheftDISC @ 2:42 pm


By Jaikumar Vijayan
The rush by shoppers to the Web makes the season a great time for online retailers. It’s also a great time for hackers looking to steal data and money from the unwary millions expected to search for great deals online.

Checkout huge savings on Today’s Hot Deals on Information Security Solutions for the holidays

The growth of holiday hackers has annually prompted security analysts, identity theft awareness groups, and various government agencies to come up with lists of precautions that consumers can take to avoid becoming a victim of online fraud. Such lists can prove a benefit to consumers, but unfortunately some people ignore it.

Below are the identity theft awareness tips which can help maximize your exposure to online fraud.

Tip No. 1: Open all attachments from strangers and click on all embedded links in such e-mail messages. Such actions remain one of the most effective ways to provide thieves with personal information and financial data. All a hacker needs to do is find computer users who instinctively open e-mail messages from strangers, even those who write in a foreign language. The action can open the door to keystroke loggers, rootkits, or Trojan horse programs. Crooks can also easily install backdoors to easily steal data without attracting any attention. Once installed, hackers gain unfettered access to personal data and can even remotely control and administer systems from anywhere.

Tip No. 2: Respond to Dr. (Mrs.) Mariam Abacha, whose name is used by many hackers who say they have close friends and relatives in Nigeria who have recently been widowed or deposed in a military coup and need your help to get their millions of dollars out of the country. Users are told they will undoubtedly be rewarded for helping to get their “well-packed trunk boxes” full of cash out of Nigeria. And to make sure to provide bank account information, login credentials, date of birth, and mother’s maiden name so that they can wire the reward directly into a checking account in time for the holidays.

Tip No. 3: Install a peer-to-peer file-sharing client on your PC and configure it so all files, including bank account, Social Security, and credit card numbers, along with copies of mortgage and tax return documents, are easily available to anyone on the same P2P network. Your personal data will stream over the Internet while you check out what songs you can download for free without getting sued by the RIAA.

Tip No. 4: Come up with passwords that are easy to crack. It saves hackers from spending too much time and effort trying to access your PC. Clever sequences such as “123456” and “abcdef” and your firstname.lastname all make fine, easy-to-remember default passwords for you and for hackers. For maximum exposure, keep passwords short, don’t mix alphabets and numerals, and use the same password for all accounts.

Tip No. 5: Avoid installing the latest anti-malware tools and security updates. Keeping operating systems properly patched and anti-virus and anti-spyware tools updated make life hard for hackers. Users can help them out by making sure their anti-virus software and anti-spyware tools are at least 18 months out of date or by not using them at all. Either way, it’s very likely that your computer will be infected with a full spectrum of malware.

For additional tips on how to shop securely on Christmas and holidays season:
How to shop safely online this Christmas
Identity theft tip-off countermeasure and consequence | DISC

Please comment below regarding any other new and emerging threat which needs to be addressed during holiday’s season?

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Tags: antivirus, Christmas and holiday season, Computer security, Credit card, File sharing, hacker, Identity Theft, Malicious Software, Malware, Online shopping, Personal computer, Security, shop safely, shop securely, Spyware, threats, trojan, Trojan horse