SC Magazine: Researchers find free ransomware variant being distributed on the Dark Web

SC Magazine: Researchers find free ransomware variant being distributed on the Dark Web. “Security researchers have identified a ransomware variant that is available for free on the Dark Web and is even unregistered. The discovery comes at a time when the ransomware trade is running on handsome commissions.”

Motherboard: Flight Simulator Add-On Tried to Catch Pirates By Installing Password-Stealing Malware on Their Computers

Motherboard: Flight Simulator Add-On Tried to Catch Pirates By Installing Password-Stealing Malware on Their Computers. “Piracy is an issue for games and other software developers. Some handle it in novel ways, like deliberately making pirated versions of a game near unplayable, or by releasing their software for free. One piece of flight simulator software had an unusual, and controversial technique: infecting pirates with malware designed to steal their Chrome passwords.”

Ars Technica: Critical Telegram flaw under attack disguised malware as benign images

Ars Technica: Critical Telegram flaw under attack disguised malware as benign images. “Makers of the Telegram instant messenger have fixed a critical vulnerability that hackers were actively exploiting to install malware on users’ computers, researchers said Tuesday. The flaw, which resided in the Windows version of the messaging app, allowed attackers to disguise the names of attached files, researchers from security firm Kaspersky Lab said in a blog post. By using the text-formatting standard known as Unicode, attackers were able to cause characters in file names to appear from right to left, instead of the left-to-right order that’s normal for most Western languages.”

The Register: UK ICO, USCourts.gov… Thousands of websites hijacked by hidden crypto-mining code after popular plugin hacked

The Register: UK ICO, USCourts.gov… Thousands of websites hijacked by hidden crypto-mining code after popular plugin hacked. “Thousands of websites around the world – from the UK’s NHS and ICO to the US government’s court system – were today secretly mining crypto-coins on netizens’ web browsers for miscreants unknown. The affected sites all use a fairly popular plugin called Browsealoud, made by Brit biz Texthelp, which reads out webpages for blind or partially sighted people.”

Boing Boing: 139 pieces of (seemingly nonfunctional) malware that exploit Spectre and Meltdown are now circulating in the wild

Boing Boing: 139 pieces of (seemingly nonfunctional) malware that exploit Spectre and Meltdown are now circulating in the wild. “This week, AV-TEST’s census of samples of circulating malware that attempt to exploit the Meltdown and Spectre bugs hit 139, up from 77 on January 17. AV-TEST CEO Andreas Marx says that the different strains of malware mostly contain recompiled versions of the same proof-of-concept code released with the initial report on the bugs.”

CBR: Ransomware is ‘not a lightning strike’

CBR: Ransomware is ‘not a lightning strike’. “Another worrying fact is that your organisation does not have to be cybersecurity negligent for an attack to be successful, everyone is at risk. More than 77 per cent of respondents hit by ransomware said they were running up to date endpoint protection when they were hit. This signals the critical need for innovative approaches to cybersecurity in general.”

TechCrunch: Google says it removed 700K apps from the Play Store in 2017, up 70% from 2016

TechCrunch: Google says it removed 700K apps from the Play Store in 2017, up 70% from 2016. “The relatively open nature of Android has made it a target for malware authors and other bad actors of all stripes who often try to get their wares onto your phone through both the official Google Play Store, third-party app stores and any other way they can think of. For most users, though, the main Android app store is Google’s own Play Store and as the company announced today, the company removed 700,000 potentially harmful or deceiving apps from its store last year. That’s up 70 percent from 2016.”