In-depth security news and investigation
  1. Patch Tuesday Lowdown, October 2019 Edition

    On Tuesday Microsoft issued software updates to fix almost five dozen security problems in Windows and software designed to run on top of it. By most accounts, it's a relatively light patch batch this month. Here's a look at the highlights.
  2. Mariposa Botnet Author, Darkcode Crime Forum Admin Arrested in Germany

    A Slovenian man convicted of authoring the destructive and once-prolific Mariposa botnet and running the infamous Darkode cybercrime forum has been arrested in Germany on request from prosecutors in the United States, who've recently re-indicted him on related charges.
  3. German Cops Raid “Cyberbunker 2.0,” Arrest 7 in Child Porn, Dark Web Market Sting

    German authorities said Friday they'd arrested seven people and were investigating six more in connection with the raid of a Dark Web hosting operation that allegedly supported multiple child porn, cybercrime and drug markets with hundreds of servers buried inside a heavily fortified military bunker. Incredibly, for at least two of the men accused in the scheme, this was their second bunker-based hosting business that was raided by cops and shut down for courting and supporting illegal activity online.
  4. MyPayrollHR CEO Arrested, Admits to $70M Fraud

    Earlier this month, employees at more than 1,000 companies saw one or two paycheck's worth of funds deducted from their bank accounts after the CEO of their cloud payroll provider absconded with $35 million in payroll deposits from customers. On Monday, the CEO was arrested and allegedly confessed that the diversion was the last desperate gasp of a financial shell game that earned him $70 million over several years.
  5. Interview With the Guy Who Tried to Frame Me for Heroin Possession

    In April 2013, I received via U.S. mail more than a gram of pure heroin as part of a scheme to get me arrested for drug possession. But the plan failed and the Ukrainian mastermind behind it soon after was imprisoned for unrelated cybercrime offenses. That individual recently gave his first interview since finishing his jail time here in the states, and he's shared some select (if often abrasive and coarse) details on how he got into cybercrime and why. Below are a few translated excerpts.
  6. Before He Spammed You, this Sly Prince Stalked Your Mailbox

    A reader forwarded what he briefly imagined might be a bold, if potentially costly, innovation on the old Nigerian prince scam that asks for help squirreling away millions in unclaimed fortune: it was sent via the U.S. Postal Service, with a postmarked stamp and everything. In truth these "advance fee" or "419" scams- - so-called because they violate section 419 of the criminal code of Nigeria where many such lures originate -- predate email and have circulated via postal mail in various forms and countries over the years.
  7. Man Who Hired Deadly Swatting Gets 15 Months

    An Ohio teen who recruited a convicted serial swatter to fake a distress call that ended in the police shooting an innocent Kansas man in 2017 has been sentenced to 15 months in prison.
  8. NY Payroll Company Vanishes With $35 Million

    MyPayrollHR, a now defunct cloud-based payroll processing firm based in upstate New York, abruptly ceased operations this past week after stiffing employees at thousands of companies. The ongoing debacle, which allegedly involves malfeasance on the part of the payroll company's CEO, resulted in countless people having money drained from their bank accounts and has left nearly $35 million worth of payroll and tax payments in legal limbo.
  9. Patch Tuesday, September 2019 Edition

    Microsoft today issued security updates to plug some 80 security holes in various flavors of its Windows operating systems and related software. The software giant assigned a "critical" rating to almost a quarter of those vulnerabilities, meaning they could be used by malware or miscreants to hijack vulnerable systems with little or no interaction on the part of the user.
  10. Secret Service Investigates Breach at U.S. Govt IT Contractor

    The U.S. Secret Service is investigating a breach at a Virginia-based government technology contractor that saw access to several of its systems put up for sale in the cybercrime underground, KrebsOnSecurity has learned. The contractor claims the access being auctioned off was to old test systems that do not have direct connections to its government partner networks. In mid-August, a member of a popular Russian-language cybercrime forum offered to sell access to the internal network of a U.S. government IT contractor that does business with more than 20 federal agencies, including several branches of the military. The seller bragged that he had access to email correspondence and credentials needed to view databases of the client agencies, and set the opening price at six bitcoins (~USD $60,000).

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