Tag Archives: Hacked

FCC Admits Its Website Wasn’t Hacked During Net Neutrality Commenting. Ajit Pai Blames Obama Hire
August 7, 2018 12:00 am|Comments (0)

The FCC’s inspector general said that the agency’s commenting system was not hacked by distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks on May 7, 2017, despite claims by FCC officials then and a refusal to address the issue by FCC Chair Ajit Pai and others in intervening months. This included the FCC failing to respond to congressional demands for more information. The comments related to the Pai’s plan to overturn network neutrality rules clarified during the Obama administration.

The actual cause? A technical failure to handle many people simultaneously heeding John Oliver on HBO’s Last Week Tonight to post comments in favor of net neutrality.

Pai now states that he was misled, despite ample time within the agency to review the information and made a determination separate from the Office of the Inspector General (OIG), especially after it admitted to Gizmodo in July 2017 in response to a Freedom of Information Act request that it had no record of an analysis that led to the conclusion of an attack, nor any written record of the IT staff documenting that an attack had occurred.

Separately, the issue that as many as 94% of the 23 million comments successfully submitted were clogged with duplicates and contained mostly forgeries remains unaddressed, and has also dogged the credibility of Pai and others at the FCC. The attorney general of New York at the time opened an investigation. In May 2018, two Democratic senators demanded new security measures for commenting and accountability for previous failures in a letter to Pai.

The OIG report denying an attack in May 2017 has not yet appeared, but FCC Chair Ajit Pai released a statement to try to set the news coverage agenda, ascribing all blame on one person, David Bray: “I am deeply disappointed that the FCC’s former Chief Information Officer (CIO), who was hired by the prior Administration and is no longer with the Commission, provided inaccurate information about this incident to me, my office, Congress, and the American people.”

This wasn’t the first time the comment system locked up, nor the first time Bray was fingered as making an unsupportable statement. In 2014, Oliver also asked viewers to post comments supporting net neutrality and the system went down. According to reporting in August 2017 from Gizmodo, Bray allegedly leaked information to Motherboard in 2014, following that crash, claiming that malicious activity was responsible.

Gizmodo reported that no information emerged showing an attack in 2014. Pai’s statement purports that the contents of the FCC’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) reveals the same.

The FCC voted December 14, 2017, in a party-line 3-2 split, to repeal rules set in 2015 that prohibited Internet service providers from throttling, prioritizing, or discriminating data based on site, service, or device, among other regulations.

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Hacked Tokyo cryptocurrency exchange to repay owners $425 million
January 28, 2018 6:00 am|Comments (0)

TOKYO (Reuters) – Tokyo-based cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck Inc said on Sunday it would return about 46.3 billion yen ($ 425 million) of the virtual money it lost to hackers two days ago in one of the biggest-ever thefts of digital money.

That amounts to nearly 90 percent of the 58 billion yen worth of NEM coins the company lost in an attack that forced it to suspend on Friday withdrawals of all cryptocurrencies except bitcoin.

Coincheck said in a statement it would repay the roughly 260,000 owners of NEM coins in Japanese yen, though it was still working on timing and method.

The theft underscores security and regulatory concerns about bitcoin and other virtual currencies even as a global boom in them shows little signs of fizzling.

Two sources with direct knowledge of the matter said Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) sent a notice to the country’s roughly 30 firms that operate virtual currency exchanges to warn of further possible cyber-attacks, urging them to step up security.

The financial watchdog is also considering administrative punishment for Coincheck under the financial settlements law, one of the sources said.

Japan started to require cryptocurrency exchange operators to register with the government only in April 2017. Pre-existing operators such as Coincheck have been allowed to continue offering services while awaiting approval. Coincheck’s application, submitted in September, is still pending.

Coincheck told a late-Friday news conference that its NEM coins were stored in a “hot wallet” instead of the more secure “cold wallet”, outside the internet. Asked why, company President Koichiro Wada cited technical difficulties and a shortage of staff capable of dealing with them.

In 2014, Tokyo-based Mt. Gox, which once handled 80 percent of the world’s bitcoin trades, filed for bankruptcy after losing around half a billion dollars worth of bitcoins. More recently, South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Youbit last month shut down and filed for bankruptcy after being hacked twice last year.

World leaders meeting in Davos last week issued fresh warnings about the dangers of cryptocurrencies, with U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin relating Washington’s concern about the money being used for illicit activity.

Reporting by Takahiko Wada and Chang-Ran Kim; Editing by Stephen Coates

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Pippa Middleton’s iCloud account reportedly hacked, with thousands of private photos stolen
September 26, 2016 4:46 am|Comments (0)

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Pippa Middleton, the sister of Kate Middleton the Duchess of Cambridge, has had her iCloud account hacked and thousands of private photographs stolen, according to The Independent.

The information retrieved is believed to include personal photos of the royal family and of Middleton with her fiancé James Matthews.

The publication noted Middleton’s lawyers confirmed her account has been accessed and that her and Matthews have requested their privacy to be respected. 

The royal correspondent for the Daily Mail reported that 3,000 photos had been taken from Middleton’s account and a person going by the name “mas” was attempting to sell them to media organizations.  Read more…

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On getting your WordPress site hacked; pay now or pay more later
April 18, 2016 3:50 am|Comments (0)

In my last post I posed the question of whether it’s time to look for alternatives to the leading publishing platforms such as WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, etc., but, truth be told, finding an alternative that can do everything these products do is practically impossible … that is, unless you’re willing to spend money building a customized solution.

And that may be the reality of the future; if you don’t build your own solution paying upfront at perhaps 100x the cost (thanks, Keith) of, say, a simple WordPress installation, you’ll windup paying far more than that when you get hacked. According to IBM’s tenth annual Cost of Data Breach Study:

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