Showing posts with label Cyberwarfare. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cyberwarfare. Show all posts

Friday, 10 May 2013

Thank Firebrand it's Friday - Fifth Edition


By 



Welcome to the fifth edition of TFiF (Thank Firebrand it's Friday). This week we look at cyber-warfare, the death of an internet giant and App creation for the web coding challenged. Let's get to it.

The death of an internet giant


Last week saw the quiet passing of an internet legend. After 16 years of dedicated service, Hotmail was finally put out to pasture by Microsoft to be replaced by the metro styled Outlook.


Source: Ryan Majeau
Final transition from Hotmail to Outlook saw the migration of more than 300 million live Email accounts, which equates to more than 150 petabytes of data (1 petabyte = 1000 terabytes). No doubt a majority of that data fell into 2 categories, social media notifications or Spam.

"Sir I have won lottery, need bank account to transfer my many millions, will give you 5%".....seems legit, here's my bank details and 4 digit pin code.



The real risk of cyber attacks

In recent years we have seen the rise of cyber crime and the increasing insurmountable danger in a world seemingly dominated by computers. Only last week Hackers compromised Twitter accounts from the Associated Press, causing Stock Markets to tank for following a false tweet claiming an attack on the White House.

Former Department of Homeland Security, Paul Rosenweig warns us that future attacks could result in far more severe consequences. Below are a few disturbing scenarios from his recent publication:


  • Industrial Control Systems could be hacked disrupting dams, oil refineries and the national grid. Think of the riots following the New York blackout, or when that dam collapsed and Superman had to race to save the town from the onrushing flood (ok the second happened in a movie, but you see my point).
Source: www.complex.com
  • Satellite based navigation systems could be manipulated affecting GPS data, planes provided with incorrect locational data, or you end up in a field instead of Tesco car park!
  • For those that have seen Fight Club a similar scenario could play out where London, Tokyo and New York Stock exchange data could be wiped out. Did anyone say sextuple dip recession?

A free Windows 8 App creator...


Enough of the doom and gloom, ever wanted to tap into the App market but lack the programming skills?

In steps the Zipapp web site, this free resource allows you to create your own app without ever having to write or learn a single line of code. The web based platform allows you to create a variety of static pages within the application, using feeds from Twitter/YouTube/Facebook and any compatible RSS feed.

So if you want to create a Windows 8 version of your Wordpress / Google blog and have an active Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channels, in quick time, Zippapp can help you achieve this.

Check out this 8 minute video, it really is simple.


So there we have it, another week of Thank Firebrand it's Friday in the bag. Join us next week for more news, reviews and hopefully whacky goings on.

About the Author:
Edward is a member of the Marketing team overseeing the Content Strategy for Firebrand. Working in the Industry for 2 years, Edward has experience with Microsoft Technologies including SharePoint 2007 and Windows Server 2008 R2. Edward writes for a variety of Blogs and Publications on all things Technology. 

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

A new Cold War - worlds most complex virus

Stuxnet was what many call a wake-up call to countries around the globe (read about Stuxnet here). Iran has already responded to this attack by amassing the second largest online army in the world. The internet has taken over and is quickly becoming the next platform for war. The only problem is, you don’t know who is waging it.

Stuxnet was a weapon, and the first to be made entirely from code. Since then, several viruses have been identified. One in particular, which has been dubbed Wiper was believed to be deleting data in the Middle East and from computers belonging to the Iranian oil industry.

Future Cyber Security
By DGH source: Technology Moral Dilemma blog
July 1, 211
Wiper was so complex and sophisticated that even Kaspersky, the Russian security could not find the virus or any information on the creator/s. The malware wiped hard drives clean, including its own coding.

But who could finance this kind of technology? It was clearly not a teenage boy in his room doing a prank. This virus had a goal and a target.

The 15 year old security firm did not give up. They eventually found an MD5 hash and file name on computers in Iran. When they put everything together they found something big, of a complexity never seen before… Flame.

Kaspersky Lab researcher Alexander Gostev stated that “Flame is a huge package of modules almost 20mb in size when fully deployed. Because of this, it is an extremely difficult piece of malware to analyse”

He added “Overall, we can say Flame is one of the most complex threats ever discovered. In addition, the geography of the targets and the complexity of the threat leave no doubt it being a nation state that sponsored the research behind it.”

Competitor security firm Symantec agreed with Kaspersky, stating that “This code was not likely to have been written by a single individual but by an organised, well-funded group of people working to a clear set of directives. Certain file names associated with the threat are identical to those described in an incident involving the Iranian oil ministry.”

Morgan wright – Cyberterrorism Analyst stated that the virus had 20 times more coding in it than Stuxnet, the virus that knocked down Iran’s nuclear centrifuges. He added that Flame was not only designed for recognisance, but also to steal documents, audio data, screenshots and to wipe clean hard drives with important information.

For the victims of Flame, it was like having a spy with direct control of their computer.

Learn how to take Flame and Stuxnet apart and use forensic techniques to uncover the culprits. The EC-Council C|HFI v8 certification course will teach you the entire digital forensics process. You'll learn how to secure the scene, collect evidence, and send it to the lab for testing. You will learn the following:
  • How to investigate cyber crime, and the laws involved
  • Different types of digital evidence, and the examination process
  • The first responder toolkit - how to secure, preserve and evaluate the electronic crime scene
  • How to recover deleted files and partitions in Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux
  • How to use steganography, and the AccessData forensic toolkit
  • Password cracking and how to investigate password-protected file breaches
  • Log capturing and management
  • How to investigate logs, network traffic, wireless attacks, and web attacks
  • How to track emails and investigate e-mail crimes
Train to be the police of the future - get certified.

Here is an interesting video on the deconstruction of the Flame virus: