Cyber Insurance

July 31, 2015
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Security researcher Samy Kamkar posted a YouTube video of an OwnStar device that he says let him monitor and intercept communications between General Motors’ OnStar RemoteLink app and any OnStar-equipped car. GM worked to quickly issue a fix, but Kamkar told CNET that the fix was not successful. With the OwnStar device, Kamkar indicated he was able to issue commands through OnStar’s RemoteLink app—which lets drivers control some features of their cars such as locking doors and turning on...

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July 29, 2015
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The hackers who stole data on tens of millions of U.S. insurance holders and government employees in recent months breached another big target at around the same time — United Airlines. The world’s second-largest airline detected an incursion into its computer systems in May or early June, said several people familiar with the probe. According to three of these people, investigators working with the carrier have linked the attack to a group of China-backed hackers they say are behind several... Read More
July 28, 2015
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Greece’s former finance minister was ready to hack into the country’s tax-collection system as part of contingency planning for a possible exit from the euro. The hacking was part of a “Plan B” hatched by Yanis Varoufakis to create a parallel currency in case Greece was unable to agree on a new bailout with its creditors. Varoufakis resigned on July 5 as the financial crisis spiraled out of control. He described the plan during a teleconference with investors earlier this month. A recording...

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July 22, 2015
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Two security researchers, Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek, have found a way to hack a car and control it remotely. From the Internet, they were able to track cars by location, see how fast they were going, turn the blinkers and lights on and off, and mess with the windshield wipers, radios, navigation and, sometimes, brakes and steering. In one test, they bought a Jeep that connected to the Internet through a hardware chip. They found vulnerability in a chip, then connected to another chip...

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July 21, 2015
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Federal regulators want tighter controls on the export of cyber weapons, with the Commerce Department seeking to ensure that software that can attack a network—the kind that can break in, bypass encryption and steal data—can’t be shipped overseas without permission. According to human rights reports, government agencies in Bahrain, Turkmenistan, Ethiopia and the United Arab Emirates have used spyware to monitor and crack down on activists. Leaders from about 40 countries, including the...

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July 17, 2015
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By Byron Acohido, ThirdCertainty

Google won the dismissal of a lawsuit by Android users who said the company violated its privacy policy by disclosing their names, email addresses and account locations to third parties without permission, to boost ad revenue. Judge Paul Grewal said the users failed to show that Google transmitted their own personal data or that they would suffer economic harm if it occurred. Grewal had allowed plaintiffs to pursue breach of contract...

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July 15, 2015
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By Byron Acohido, ThirdCertainty

The personal data for 21.5 million people was stolen in the Office of Personnel Management hack, but for national security professionals and cybersecurity experts, the more troubling issue is the theft of 1.1 million fingerprints. Unlike a Social Security number, address or password, fingerprints cannot be changed—once they are hacked, they’re hacked for good. And government officials have less understanding about what adversaries...

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July 10, 2015
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By Byron Acohido, ThirdCertainty

All federal employees soon could get free credit- and identity-theft monitoring services. The Office of Personnel Management said it would propose providing the benefit to all federal workers, whether or not they were affected by breaches that together affected millions of employees, contractors and other individuals. OPM said it will “work with federal employee representatives and other stakeholders” to develop the plan. Source:...

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June 29, 2015
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By Byron Acohido, ThirdCertainty

Chinese hackers have penetrated some FBI agents’ personnel files in a breach with potentially dangerous national security implications. The FBI, along with the Department of Homeland Security, is not only responsible for investigating the breach of the Office of Personnel Management by suspected Chinese cyber thieves, but is principally responsible for detecting domestic terrorist plots and foreign spies. The extent of the FBI...

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June 26, 2015
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By Byron Acohido, ThirdCertainty

Google has removed an extension from Chromium after privacy activists alleged that the extension allowed the tech giant to spy on users. The software uses a computer’s microphone to listen for the “OK, Google” phrase, which triggers voice searches. Open-source developers and privacy activists said Chromium was automatically downloading the “Chrome Hotword” extension, giving users no warning and making it impossible to stop the download...

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