A few days ago we published an article that covered a leaked batch of emails that showed Kaspersky has worked with the Russian Government. We also covered that the pieces of the emails that were published were completely out of context, and also are nothing out of the ordinary for a company that has a contract with a Government body. Kaspersky's denial of cooperation is also nothing new, so why the big deal in the media? Well we might have found a few pieces to that puzzle which would certainly explain the big push to discredit Kaspersky.
Questionable security practices aside, it seems that just about every "big" scandal lately has had leaked emails as some sort of component. In the latest such scandal we find that leaked Kaspersky emails are at the core of the US National Security policy maker's concerns over the company and the use of the product inside the US. According to "internal company emails obtained by Bloomberg Businessweek" Kaspersky has had a rather close relationship with Russian intelligence agencies.
You have probably seen a message, or email, or even a recent Facebook post claiming that a dangerous Facebook Hacker by the name of Jayden K Smith working his way through the Facebook community and hacking user accounts with ease. In fact, this "hacker" is so good that you are at risk if even one of your friends has him in their friends list. This is quite scary and also not real at all. Yup, that message, email, or post is just like every other chain message out there, completely full of crap.
Hate is a powerful item and when it spills out it can be violent, rude and many other things. Because of the power of hate found in images, media, mems, etc., many have wondered why there are not more efforts to prevent the posting or sharing of such information. After all why would a media (social or other) want to allow hate speech or images posted on their pages. Facebook took this thought process and turned it into a policy that is designed to help stop hate speech from showing up. Now the system has inadvertently started censoring the wrong people.
WikiLeaks is at it again with their "Vault 7" releases. This time part of the dump features a nice little took kit for continued exploitation of some Linux systems. The tool kit is called OutlawCountry and is, to be perfectly honest, not much more than a remote management, monitoring and exfiltration tool. It is intended to run in the background on a system after a vulnerability has been exploited to allow the payload to be pushed. It looks very similar to a tool that the NSA used for years and has now become the commercial product Kaseya.
For the last couple of days the world has been buzzing with news about the Petya malware. When the news of the outbreak broke on Tuesday morning, it was all about a new ransomware that was spreading around the globe. References to WannaCry were made and fingers pointed to the use of the same NSA exploit as the attack vector. However, Petya was not really like WannaCry in that there was no “kill-switch”. Wednesday morning the big players in the anti-malware and security markets had sent out their “what you should know emails” and a low-grade form of panic hit many enterprises.
In the early 2000s AMD was on top of the world, they had a desktop processor that was what everyone wanted. AMD was handily beating Intel in terms of performance and pushing x86-64 computing out to the world. In 2006 AMD made an odd decision to buy GPU maker ATi for a rather hefty sum. This one act threw AMD off their game so badly that they operated in the red for many years after the purchase. However, over the last 2-3 years AMD has made some well-planned changes internally. These changes included dropping the mobile focus and creating the RTG (Radeon Technology Group). They have secured some technologies through purchases and cleaned up some financially impacting deals.
Over the last couple of days, we have received information that would indicate nVidia is not moving to HBM 2 for their consumer GPUs (outside of some extremely high-end models). Instead, they appear to be focusing on improvements found in GDDR5X and GDDR6. Conversely, AMD appears to be focusing on HBM for many of their high-end and even some mid-range cards. The two very different paths has sparked something of a debate amongst fans of both products (as you can imagine). The questions are, why chose one over the other at this point and is HBM a truly viable option for AMD?
Remote management and access tools are great things for IT staff to use, but if they are not set up correctly or they have bugs hidden in the code they can quickly become a nightmare. Intel’s AMT (Active Management Technology) suite of tools recently was found to have a rather nasty little surprise hidden in them. It seems that a flaw in the way their SOL (Serial on LAN) tool runs combined with the way Windows deals with AMT allowed attackers to use AMT to deploy malware and to exfiltrate data from a compromised system.
CD Projekt RED has found themselves the victim of both data theft and now blackmail. At least that is what we are hearing from their Twitter account. According to CD Projekt, someone has made off with information that relates to their upcoming game Cyberpunk 2077. The Tweet goes on to say that the files are old and are not representative of the current version of the game. They also say they are not planning on giving in to the ransom demands. It is something of an interesting situation to be honest.