Government


  • Brazilian National Treasury hit with ransomware attack

    August 17, 2021

    The Brazilian government has released a note stating the National Treasury has been hit with a ransomware attack on Friday (13). According to a statement from the Ministry of Economy, initial measures to contain the impact of the cyberattack were immediately taken. The first assessments so far have found there was no damage to the structuring ...

  • ‘Praying Mantis’ threat actor targeting Windows internet-facing servers with malware

    July 27, 2021

    Windows internet-facing servers are being targeted by a new threat actor operating “almost completely in-memory,” according to a new report from the Sygnia Incident Response team. The report said that the advanced and persistent threat actor — which they have named “Praying Mantis” or “TG1021” — mostly used deserialization attacks to load a completely volatile, custom ...

  • WhatsApp chief claims government officials among 1,400 WhatsApp users targeted in 2019 attack

    July 24, 2021

    Senior government officials around the world – including individuals in high national security positions who are “allies of the US” – were targeted by governments with NSO Group spyware in a 2019 attack against 1,400 WhatsApp users, according to the messaging app’s chief executive. Will Cathcart disclosed the new details about individuals who were targeted in ...

  • StrongPity APT Group Deploys Android Malware for the First Time

    July 21, 2021

    We recently conducted an investigation into a malicious Android malware sample, which we believe can be attributed to the StrongPity APT group, that was posted on the Syrian e-Gov website. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time that the group has been publicly observed using malicious Android applications as part of ...

  • Ecuador’s state-run CNT telco hit by RansomEXX ransomware

    July 17, 2021

    Ecuador’s state-run Corporación Nacional de Telecomunicación (CNT) has suffered a ransomware attack that has disrupted business operations, the payment portal, and customer support. CNT is Ecuador’s state-run telecommunication carrier that offers fixed-line phone service, mobile, satellite TV, and internet connectivity. Read more… Source: Bleeping Computer  

  • CISA Issues Emergency Directive Requiring Federal Agencies To Mitigate Windows Print Spooler Service Vulnerability

    July 13, 2021

    WASHINGTON – The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) issued Emergency Directive (ED) 21-04 today to mitigate a Microsoft Windows print spooler service vulnerability CVE-2021-34527 being actively exploited. Federal civilian agencies are required to immediately disable the print spooler service on Microsoft Active Directory Domain Controllers, apply the Microsoft July 2021 cumulative updates, and make ...

  • White House urges mayors to review local govts’ cybersecurity posture

    July 7, 2021

    July 7 Following recent ransomware attacks, Deputy National Security Advisor Anne Neuberger asked US mayors to immediately hold a meeting with state agencies’ chiefs to evaluate their cybersecurity posture. Local governments have been under a constant barrage of ransomware attacks during the last few years as highlighted by an FBI public service announcement issued last year. Read ...

  • NSA, Partners Release Cybersecurity Advisory on Brute Force Global Cyber Campaign

    July 1, 2021

    FORT MEADE, Md. – The National Security Agency (NSA), Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) released a Cybersecurity Advisory today exposing malicious cyber activities by Russian military intelligence against U.S. and global organizations, starting from mid-2019 and likely ongoing. This advisory is ...

  • Biden gave Putin list of 16 critical infrastructure entities ‘off limits’ to cyberattacks

    June 17, 2021

    President Biden told reporters Wednesday he gave President Vladimir Putin a list of 16 critical infrastructure entities that are “off limits” to a Russian cyberattack. Those entities include energy, water, health care, emergency, chemical, nuclear, communications, government, defense, food, commercial facilities, IT, transportation, dams, manufacturing and financial services. “We’ll find out whether we have a cybersecurity arrangement ...

  • New SkinnyBoy malware used by Russian hackers to breach sensitive orgs

    June 3, 2021

    Security researchers have discovered a new piece of malware called SkinnyBoy that was used in spear-phishing campaigns attributed to Russian-speaking hacking group APT28. The threat actor, also known as Fancy Bear, Sednit, Sofacy, Strontium, or PwnStorm, used SkinnyBoy in attacks targeting military and government institutions earlier this year. SkinnyBoy is intended for an intermediary stage of the ...

  • Australian Cyber Security Centre using classified capabilities to warn local entities of impending ransomware hit

    June 2, 2021

    While the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) is engaged in helping a local organisation remove and recover from a ransomware hit or cyber attack, its overseer, the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) is able to use its more secretive powers to find out if any other organisations are on the attackers hit list. Speaking about the attack ...

  • Russian gang behind SolarWinds hack returns with phishing attack disguised as mail from US aid agency

    May 28, 2021

    Nobelium, the Russia-aligned gang identified as the perpetrators of the supply chain attack on SolarWinds’ Orion software, has struck again, Microsoft vice president Tom Burt in a blogpost Thursday. Burt’s post says the attacks saw Nobelium gain access to accounts on the email marketing service “Constant Contact” operated by The United States Agency for International Development ...

  • Re-Checking Your Pulse: Updates on Chinese APT Actors Compromising Pulse Secure VPN Devices

    May 27, 2021

    Mandiant published detailed results of our investigations into compromised Pulse Secure devices by suspected Chinese espionage operators. This blog post is intended to provide an update on our findings, give additional recommendations to network defenders, and discuss potential implications for U.S.-China strategic relations. Mandiant continues to gather evidence and respond to intrusions involving compromises of Pulse ...

  • Various Japanese government entities had data stolen in cyber attack: Report

    May 27, 2021

    Data from various Japanese government entities has reportedly been stolen by hackers that gained access to Fujitsu’s ProjectWEB platform. Fujitsu’s software-as-a-service platform has since been taken down and the Japanese tech giant is currently investigating the scope of the attacks, Japan’s public broadcaster NHK said in a report. Among the impacted government entities are the Ministry of ...

  • How Myanmar’s military moved in on the telecoms sector to spy on citizens

    May 19, 2021

    In the months before the Myanmar military’s Feb. 1 coup, the country’s telecom and internet service providers were ordered to install intercept spyware that would allow the army to eavesdrop on the communications of citizens, sources with direct knowledge of the plan told Reuters. The technology gives the military the power to listen in on calls, ...

  • Legislation to secure critical systems against cyberattacks moves forward in the House

    May 18, 2021

    Multiple bills meant to secure critical infrastructure against cyber threats were approved by the House Homeland Security Committee on Tuesday afternoon, just a week after a ransomware attack on the Colonial Pipeline caused fuel shortages across the nation. The committee unanimously approved the Pipeline Security Act, introduced last week by Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) and a ...

  • UK government seeks advice on defending against supply-chain cyberattacks

    May 17, 2021

    Today, the UK government has announced a call for advice on defending against software supply-chain attacks and ways to strengthen IT Managed Service Providers (MSPs) across the country. The move comes after last week when President Biden had issued an executive order to increase cybersecurity defenses across the U.S. The government’s invitation to provide feedback that will ...

  • Incremental improvements are not enough as Biden signs order boosting US cyber posture

    May 13, 2021

    United States President Joe Biden signed an executive order on Wednesday to boost the cyber posture of the federal government. The order points to recent incidents including the ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline, Exchange vulnerabilities that led to the FBI removing web shells from US servers, and the SolarWinds attack. The order said the federal government must ...

  • Australia: 328 weaknesses found by WA Auditor-General in 50 local government systems

    May 12, 2021

    The Auditor-General of Western Australia on Wednesday tabled a report into the computer systems used at 50 local government entities, revealing 328 control weakness across the group. It was Auditor-General Caroline Spencer’s intention to list the entities, but given the nature of her findings, all case studies included in Local Government General Computer Controls omit ...

  • Researchers found three flaws in ACT e-voting system that could affect election outcomes

    May 12, 2021

    The Australian Capital Territory Standing Committee on Justice and Community Safety has been looking into the 2020 ACT Election and the Electoral Act, covering among other things, systems for electronic voting. The COVID-19 Emergency Response Legislation Amendment Act 2020 introduced temporary amendments to the Electoral Act for the October 2020 election. These included the deployment of ...