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Tag: computer

FBI Warns U.S. Companies of Increasing Dangers of Chinese Hack Attacks

Data securityBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is alerting U.S. companies of the increasing dangers of Chinese hack attacks.

The Daily Beast reports that the bureau sent out warnings to companies Wednesday to be aware of a malicious computer program that has been tied to the bold hack of the Office of the Personnel Management.

The FBI also sent specifics such as the hash values for the malware, called Sakula, so that companies can search their systems to see if they are infected.

Although James Clapper, director of National Intelligence, has accused China of the government hack, he has yet to offer solid evidence, according to the Daily Beast.

The FLASH alert says the bureau has identified “cyber actors who have compromised and stolen sensitive business information and personally identifiable information.”

FBI Struggles to identify culprit in Houston Astros’ Hacking Case

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is accusing the St. Louis Cardinals’ front office of illegally gaining access to another team’s computer to steal information about players and potential trades.

But there’s one problem, the New York Times reports: Agents are having trouble determining who specifically did the deed.

The investigation has narrowed in on a group of Cardinals employees whose expertise is statistics and computer programming.

According to the Times, at least four employees of baseball operations for the Cardinals have hired defense lawyers.

Agents have determined that the digital intruders had access to a computer near the team’s complex in Jupiter, Fla.

FBI Investigates St. Louis Cardinals for Allegedly Hacking into Astros’ Network

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The St. Louis Cardinals are under investigation by the FBI for allegedly hacking the computer network of the Houston Astros to steal player information, The Washington Post reports.

A federal law enforcement official said the investigation is “ongoing” and that there is “a lot of working going into” it.

It would be the first corporate espionage case involving a sports team accused of hacking the network of another team.

Federal officials said a person commits a crime when he or she intrudes on another person’s computer without authorization or permission.

Investigators said they have uncovered evidence that shows Cardinals officials hacked the Astros’ database and accessed information on scouting and potential trades.

Major League Baseball said it “has fully cooperated.”

“Once the investigative process has been completed by federal law enforcement officials, we will evaluate the next steps and will make decisions promptly,” the official said.

FBI: China-Based Hackers Stole Information on 4 Million Federal Workers

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

U.S. investigators believe China-based hackers stole identifying information of at least 4 million federal workers across virtually every agency, leading to concerns that culprits could mimic American officials, the Boston Herald reports. 

The compromised data came from the Office of Personnel Management and the Interior Department.

“The FBI is conducting an investigation to identify how and why this occurred,” the statement said.

U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, called the breach “yet another indication of a foreign power probing successfully and focusing on what appears to be data that would identify people with security clearances.”

The skills of the hackers impressed experts.

“They were incredibly successful,” Anthony Roman, president of Roman & Associates, a global investigative and security consulting firm, said. “Certain types of malware are like little sleeper cells. It goes in there, it may stay dormant, then it collects a little information and it may go dormant again. It can be very difficult to detect as a result.”

Was Hacker Able to Seize Plane Mid-Flight? FBI Investigates

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is investigating whether a purported hacker was able to control a plane mid-flight, The Washington Post reports. 

Chris Roberts, who’s with a security intelligence firm called One World Labs, tweeted on April 15 that he was able to manipulate the in-flight and crew-alerting system of a United Airlines plane. The FBI detained Roberts for several hours after the flight, seizing his equipment and barring him from taking another United flight.

“Lesson from this evening, don’t mention planes,” he later tweeted. “The Feds ARE listening, nice crew in Syracuse, left there naked of electronics.”

Roberts told Wired in an interview that he was only kidding and did not actually take control of the flight. But the point, he said, was to show that it can be done and to alert U.S. officials to the problem.

The FBI said Roberts claimed he was able to take control of the flight.

“He stated that he thereby caused one of the airplane engines to climb resulting in a lateral or sideways movement of the plane during one of these flights,” FBI Special Agent Mark Hurley wrote in his warrant application, as Wired reported. “He also stated that he used Vortex software after comprising/exploiting or ‘hacking’ the airplane’s networks. He used the software to monitor traffic from the cockpit system.”

FBI Offers $3M Reward for Information on Most Wanted Cyber Criminal

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is offering some serious cash for information leading to the arrest of the bureau’s most wanted cyber criminal.

Evgeniy Mikhailovich Bogachev, 31, is accused of hacking 1 million computers in the U.S. and internationally.

Newsweek reports that the FBI is offering $3 million for information on capturing Bogachev, who is accused of collecting personal and bank information by installing a malware onto victims’ computers.

A Pennsylvania court indicted Bogachev on charges of conspiracy, computer fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud and money laundering in May 2014. Authorities said his last known location was the Russian town of Anapa on the north coast of the Black Sea.

FBI’s Most Wanted Cybercriminal Protected Used Name of His Cat As Password

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A lot of questions have been raised about how the FBI managed to gain access to an encrypted computer by one of the FBI’s most wanted cybercriminals.

Turns out, Jeremy Hammond, who was savvy enough to hack the website of think tank Statfor, used a very simple password: “Chewy 123.”

“Chewy” was the name of Statfor’s cat.

That wasn’t hard to crack.

Hammong was arrested at his Chicago home in 2012.

FBI Seeking Help Identifying Hundreds of Children Victimized in ‘Sextortion’ Case

istock illustration

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is looking for help identifying suspects in its largest “sextortion” case ever prosecuted.

WJXX-TV reports that a Northeast Florida man was asking for sexually explicit photos and videos of girls as young as 13 years old.

“He pretended to be a young boy the same age,” said McCarley. “He befriended them, joined their Myspace, Facebook trying to get to know them.”

Agents were shocked when they found what was on Lucas Chansler’s computer: 350 victims and 80,000 pictures and videos on his computer.

Only about 100 victims have been identified.

Chansler was sentenced to 105 years in prison.