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Tech News

Cisco customers targeted using leaked NSA hacking tools

Networking giant says there is no workaround for the issue Hackers have targeted some Cisco customers using a new vulnerability found thanks to leaked NSA cyber tools. The tools were released in August by a hacker group dubbed ShadowBrokers and are confirmed to belong to the Equation Group which has strong ties with the NSA. It is the second such vulnerability to be found by Cisco as a result of the data dump made by the hackers; Cisco has already fixed a flaw in the SNMP implementation in its ASA firewalls. Cisco has warned its customers that all versions of its IOS, IOS XE and IOS XR software are vulnerable to one of the many exploits released on August 15. The networking firm has not revealed which of its customers may have already been breached but the issue impacts firewalls, routers and switches made by the firm, enabling hackers to get hold of critical and confidential information from its customers. The vulnerability is due to insufficient condition checks in the part of the code that handles IKEv1 security negotiation requests. An attacker could exploit this vulnerability by sending a crafted IKEv1 packet to an affected device configured to accept IKEv1 security negotiation requests, the firm said in a security advisory blog. But despite stating that its incident response team was aware of exploitation of the vulnerabilities of those customers running affected platforms, Cisco has not yet developed a patch for the flaw and has said no workarounds are available. Instead, it has released IPS signatures and Snort rules to mitigate the risks for its customers. The exploit is called BENIGNCERTAIN and is made up of three binaries, each of which can be exploited to obtain RSA private key data and VPN configuration details if used against Cisco PIX firewalls. Cisco isn’t the only networking company to have exploits revealed. The ShadowBrokers data dump included exploits for Juniper and Fortinet, amongst others. French Caldwell, former Gartner fellow and chief evangelist at GRC apps company MetricStream, warned other spy agencies – particularly the other Five Eyes members that they too are vulnerable to a similar hack. If the NSA was hacked, the chances that they too have been targeted are certainly more than 50-50, he said.

Yahoo Aware Hacker Is Advertising 200 Million Accounts on Dark Web

A notorious cybercriminal is advertising 200 million of alleged Yahoo user credentials on the dark web, and the company has said it is aware of the hackers claims, but has not confirmed nor denied the legitimacy of the data. On Monday, the hacker known as Peace, who has previously sold dumps of Myspace and LinkedIn, listed supposed credentials of Yahoo users on The Real Deal marketplace. Peace told Motherboard that he has been trading the data privately for some time, but only now decided to sell it openly. We are aware of a claim, a Yahoo spokesperson told Motherboard in an email, before the data was made public. The company did not deny that the customer details were Yahoo users, despite being asked if it corresponded to the companys own records. We are committed to protecting the security of our users information and we take any such claim very seriously. Our security team is working to determine the facts. Yahoo works hard to keep our users safe, and we always encourage our users to create strong passwords, or give up passwords altogether by using Yahoo Account Key, and use different passwords for different platforms.

0day exploit bypasses Windows security features, affects Lenovo ThinkPads

A zero-day exploit has been discovered in a Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) driver, this exploit allows the attacker to remove the write protection that is on the flash memory, giving them open-ended access to run any scripts that they wish on the System Management Mode, which is normally a privileged operating mode for the CPU. The exploit has been dubbed ThinkPwn, a play on words of ThinkPad and Pwned. Once the attacker has used ThinkPwn to open the machine to attack, they can disable Secure Boot which is used to verify the authenticity of an OS bootloader, in order to prevent rootkits at the boot-level. After Secure Boot is disabled, Windows security features can then be accessed and disabled, too. One of those features is Credential Guard, which is used to keep enterprise domain credentials secure, amongst other pieces of data. Lenovo says that the affected code is not in its own UEFI file, but in one provided by an independent BIOS vendor (IBV). The extent of the security concern is not yet known. At the moment, it is only known to affect Lenovo ThinkPad machines, but it is a real possibility that other vendors and PC manufacturers could also be affected. Lenovo itself says the issue could be “industry-wide”. The only slightly positive in all of this is that, in order to attack a machine, you need physical access to it, as the UEFI can only be accessed physically, and would require a USB flash drive. You can read more about the exploit by the researcher who discovered it <a href="http://blog.cr4.sh/2016/06/exploring-and-exploiting-lenovo.html">here</a>

Elites AI Created Super Weapons and Started Hunting Players. Skynet is Here.

A bug in Elite Dangerous caused the games AI to create super weapons and start to hunt down the games players. Developer Frontier has had to strip out the feature at the heart of the problem, engineers weaponry, until the issue is fixed. It all started after Frontier released the 2.1 Engineers update. The release improved the games AI, making the higher ranked NPCs that would fly around Elites galaxy more formidable foes. As well as improving their competence in dog fights, the update allowed the AI to use interdiction hardware to pull players travelling at jump speed into normal space. The AI also had access to one of 2.1 versions big features: crafting. These three things combined made the AI a significant threat to players. They were better in fights, could pull unwary jump travellers into a brawl, and they could attack them with upgraded weapons. There was something else going on, though. The AI was crafting super weapons that the designers had never intended.

The hackers who could have taken down the internet in 30 minutes

I am informed that, you think that within 30 minutes the seven of you could make the internet unusable for the entire nation, is that correct? That question came from Sen. Fred Thompson (R-Tenn.) on May 19, 1998, while speaking with members of a Cambridge, Massachusetts hacker group known as The L0pht. That is correct. Actually one of us with just a few packets, said Peiter Zatko, who is better known by his hacker pseudonym of Mudge. Sitting alongside Mudge were six other members of L0pht who specialised in various fields of computer and network security, from satellite communications to password cracking. One of them was Cris Thomas — also known as Space Rogue. The famous testimony of being able to take down the internet in 30 minutes, I asked Thomas in a phone interview. Was that a boast or was that realistic… He cut me off. No, he said. In our particular case, we were looking at something called BGP, or border gateway protocol. We found a flaw in the protocol that would cause a cascading effect through most routers in use at the time, said Thomas, who is now a strategist for Tenable Network Security.

TeamViewer Hacked

Sometimes, you just need to do a quick remote log in to someone elses computer. There are plenty of tools available for doing this. But most of them are either expensive to purchase or difficult to set up. Remote desktop app TeamViewer changed all that with a series of free cross-platform, lightweight apps that require only a couple of numeric codes in order to connect to a remote machine. This has made TeamViewer very popular, and in turn, an inevitable target for hackers. Last week, threads began surfacing on Reddit written by TeamViewer users claiming they had been hacked thru the app. Most of the hacking claims had common points. Users who were initially away from their computers came back to find their machines were being remotely controlled and directed to websiteS like PayPal, eBay, and Amazon.