Recent Posts

Major Websites Now Secretly Using Anti Ad-Blockers

Major Websites Now Secretly Using Anti Ad-Blockers

A recent study conducted by the University of Iowa and UC Riverside revealed that around a third of the top 10,000 websites may now be using highly sophisticated ad blockers in secret. By visiting the sites multiple times with and without an ad-blocker, then comparing the final rendered code of the page, the researchers were able to see if the content had changed even without getting a notification. They found that 30.5% of the top 10,000 sites, and 38.2% of the top 1,000 according to Alexa are using some sort of ad-blocking detection. Experts note that the improvement of ad-blockers […]

Acoustic Attacks Able to Disrupt Hard Disk Drive Operations

Acoustic Attacks Able to Disrupt Hard Disk Drive Operations

In research published last week, researchers from Princeton and Purdue universities expanded on previous research and recorded new test results on the effect of acoustics on hard disk drive operations. It had already been established before that sound at a certain frequency can make HDDs stop responding to OS commands. In the new study, the Princeton-Purdue research team was able to determine the optimum frequency, attack time, distance, and sound wave angle to carry out a disruptive acoustic attack using a specially crafted audio wave blaster. The study also showed that an acoustic attack can also be used to successfully […]

China Tests Use of WeChat Account as Official e-ID

China Tests Use of WeChat Account as Official e-ID

It was reported that China is currently testing the feasibility of using WeChat accounts to generate a state-sanctioned electronic ID with limited functions. WeChat or Weixin, is an instant messaging application owned by Tencent. Experts note that the Chinese government prefers to use WeChat since users can only register an account on the platform a mobile phone number, which in turn, can only be obtained by submitting an official ID to the telecom provider. Telecom providers in China are all required by law to cooperate with investigations by law enforcement. This is the second attempt of the Chinese government to […]

Vietnam Deploys 10,000-strong Cyber Military Force to Police Online Content

Vietnam Deploys 10,000-strong Cyber Military Force to Police Online Content

Vietnam’s one-party government recently unveiled its new military cyber unit composed of 10,000 members. The cyber army, called Force 47, has been formed with the mission to take down sites and blogs deemed to have bad and dangerous content. The unit is already operating in several sectors. Deputy head of the military’s political department Lieutenant General Nguyen Trong Nghia said that it is imperative for them to proactively counter “wrong views”.   However, it seems like Vietnam’s cyber force may only have to power to tame local internet content, as it does not largely silence criticism on global platforms.   […]

Obama Urges Responsible Use of Social Media

Obama Urges Responsible Use of Social Media

In a recent interview with Prince Harry on BBC Radio 4, former US president Barack Obama said that the irresponsible use of social media only serves to spread misinformation and distorts understanding of complex issues. Mr. Obama also said that the internet seems to be leading users to read and listen to things that only reinforce their own biases. He added that the technology must allow diversity of views, instead of balkanizing society. The former president also suggested that face-to-face contact may help counteract extreme views, as things over the internet tend to get oversimplified.   Source: BBC

Russian Code Found in FBI Fingerprint Analysis Software

Russian Code Found in FBI Fingerprint Analysis Software

A whistleblower recently revealed the existence of a Russian-made code in a software used by the FBI and a number of other US enforcement agencies for fingerprint analysis. The code was embedded in the software by Sagem Sécurité to boost its fingerprint-recognition software in order to win the FBI contract. However, the French company bought it from Papillon AO, a firm known to have strong ties with Kremlin.   According to contracts which were referenced in court documents, Papillon said that its code does not have a backdoor, or any other feature that would enable unauthorized access. Source: Buzzfeed

Hundreds of WordPress Sites Still Using Backdoored Plugins

Hundreds of WordPress Sites Still Using Backdoored Plugins

Security researchers from White Fir Design recently warned that hundreds of WordPress sites are still using “boobytrapped” plugins that make them vulnerable to remote code execution by attackers. The plugins are said to have a code embedded in them which, according to experts, do not seem to have a legitimate purpose. The discovery was tied to a blog post by a web developer who first encountered the code way back in 2014. However, the White Fir team said that they are still getting requests from various IP addresses trying to access the code. The malicious plugins have already been removed […]

New Crypto Miner Malware Infects Via Facebook Messenger

New Crypto Miner Malware Infects Via Facebook Messenger

Researchers at Trend Micro recently identified a new self-propagating malware called Digimine which is being spread via Facebook Messenger. First spotted in South Korea, the malware is sent as a video file by infected users. When installed, the malware installs a Monero miner and a Chrome extension which spreads the malware to the user’s Facebook contacts. Facebook said that it had removed all links to Digimine after being informed of the issue. However, experts say that the cybercriminals behind the malware can simply tweak their links and resume the campaign.   Source: International Business Times

Bitcoin Bounces Back, Holds Overnight Gains

Bitcoin Bounces Back, Holds Overnight Gains

Popular cryptocurrency Bitcoin was able to bounce back last Tuesday from its worst dip since 2013. Bitcoin suffered a massive correction, along with other cryptocurrencies, last Friday where it touched the bottom at $11,159.93, a sharp dive of around 30% its previous value. However, the market was able to recover from the brutal selloff, with Bitcoin trading light and going up 10% last Tuesday.   Source: Reuters

Putin Says “Some Firms” Need Online Monitoring

Putin Says “Some Firms” Need Online Monitoring

Last Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin told Russian authorities that they needed to monitor the online and social media activities of certain companies during the country’s presidential elections next year. Putin added that the government needs to study how these companies affect Russia’s domestic political life. He also discussed with Russian parliament leaders the new “foreign agents” law which he signed last month. The law will compel foreign media outlets to provide the Russian government a number of details, such as source of funding, if designated as a foreign agent. US media organizations Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) and Voice […]