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IT & Communications

In American's frozen north, authorities in Alaska have identified persons they say were behind a website offering Distributed Denial of Service or DDoS services. DDoS is where, by one of several means, internet servers are bombarded with vast numbers of requests to the intent (and often the effect) that the websites are overwhelmed with the result that access is denied to legitimate visitors and those servers are presented from accessing the internet. In Anchorage, Alaska's biggest town but not its capital, U.S. Attorney Bryan Schroder has announced the seizure of an internet domain associated with DDoS-for-hire services as well as criminal charges against a Pennsylvania man who facilitated the computer attack platform.

CoNet Section: 

Communications are the lifeblood of any commercial arrangement. So, when things go wrong and you need to fix them, an on-line chat is the quickest and best option: after all, while "your call may be recorded.." doesn't mean you get a record. So, on-line chats are a better solution. Or not.

(And there's more: an addendum to the original article makes things worse)

CoNet Section: 

You should neither know nor care exactly what criminal activity lies behind the link in this e-mail. The fact that it's fraud from beginning to end should be enough.

CoNet Section: 

It's pretty much an established truth that Mark Zuckerberg and his senior team cannot be trusted but their latest wheeze is of such monumental importance to everyone that's it's time every one left each and every one of various parts of the Facebook empire. Some parts will be more difficult than others, some things will involve value judgements as to the lesser evil but, at the end of the day, one keeps coming back to the fact that Facebook cannot be trusted and it's about to get worse. Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp are to become a unified surveillance and reporting tool and every user is the target.

CoNet Section: 

Fraud is cyclical. Historically, frauds would lie dormant for, perhaps, five years then come back. But the cycle has become much shorter, often only two or three months. Some frauds have become perpetual, aided by e-mail that hits so many prospective targets at such a low marginal cost. Others have a few days in the light before disappearing into relative darkness for a matter of weeks, perhaps because the targets are sorted by e.g. alphabetical order, into batches. One such is fraud relating to domain names. They take several forms but the same basic structure. The fraudster hints that, if you don't pay up, your domain name will stop working. Here's the anatomy of one such fraudulent mail that has reached us multiple times in the past several days.

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Microsoft's policy of forcing users who have purchased licences for their operating system, Windows, by abandoning support (including security support) has now reached the millions of users who continue to rely on Windows XP and Vista. Now, Mozilla, which produces the very popular Thunderbird e-mail client and upon which many businesses rely, has released its latest version, 60, and announced that it, too, is to abandon users of these widely used operating systems.

CoNet Section: 

It's not rocket science. Ever since (I think) 1998 when the BBC's lawyers blocked an explanation I gave to BBC TV on how the nature of HTML facilitates on-line fraud (the feared that it would increase the number of criminals using it) criminals have, indeed, used certain features of HTML to hide what they are up to and ordinary people have lost many millions of dollars and have suffered innumerable attacks on their computers simply because of one, very simple, trick, writes Nigel Morris-Cotterill

CoNet Section: 

One has to wonder whether being listed on Microsoft's Bing search engine is worth the trouble. It's stupid and it slows down websites generating log entries that look suspiciously similar to those created by hackers and spambots. It's time to decide whether to simply block BingBot from all access to sites and accept that means an absence of web presence (except there are a couple of tricks that can keep web presence while keeping BingBot away from active sites).

CoNet Section: 

Last year it was FinTech. 2018 was scheduled to be the year of RegTech but the crazy inflation in the value of crypto-currencies at the end of 2017 hijacked that and this year became the year where no sentence was complete without the word "blockchain" somewhere in it, or so it seemed. But the love affair is already turning sour as reality sets in and the buzzword junkies are at last being shown for what they are: opportunists who will be onto the next big thing as soon as someone tells them what it is.

CoNet Section: 

Source: U.S. Department of Homeland Security US-CERT

National Cyber Awareness System:
AA18-284A: Publicly Available Tools Seen in Cyber Incidents Worldwide [ https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/a... ] 11/10/2018 11:19 AM EDT
Original release date: 11 October, 2018

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