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#infosec | Las Vegas Suffers Cyber-Attack – Infosecurity Magazine

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

The city of Las Vegas is licking its wounds after suffering a cyber-attack on its computer network.

It is not yet known whether any sensitive information was compromised in the incident, which took place in the early hours of Tuesday morning. 

City spokesperson David Riggleman said that it was likely that the threat actors gained access to the city’s network via a malicious email. 

Riggleman said that the city’s IT department moved fast to counter the invasion and stated that “the city is taking extensive steps to protect its systems.”

City officials were notified after unusual activity occurred at around 4:30 a.m. on Tuesday, but by the evening the full extent of the damage wrought by the incident was yet to be confirmed. Riggleman said a clearer picture is likely to emerge over the next day or two.

According to Riggleman, the City of Lost Wages encounters an average of 279,000 attempts to breach its systems every month. 

He observed: “A lot of people out there . . . are trying to open that cyber door.”

While Las Vegas works out who it was that managed to step over its digital threshold and what they got up to, city residents are likely to experience some disruption. 

Riggleman said that the city’s emails may be affected by system analysts’ ongoing investigation into the breach. He expected any disruption, however, to be “minimal.”

If the breach turns out to be the latest in a string of ransomware attacks on US cities, then it is highly unlikely that Las Vegas will cough up the money. The city’s mayor, Carolyn Goodman, went on record in July as sponsor of a resolution not to pay ransoms in the event of a cybersecurity breach. The resolution was approved by the US Conference of Mayors. 

Given the timing of the attack, some may wonder if it was launched by a vengeful Iran as retaliation for the recent killing of Iranian major general Qassem Suleimani. 

Following the announcement of Suleimani’s death on January 2, the US Department of Homeland Security issued a warning for Americans to be on high alert for cyber-attacks coming from Iran.

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#infosec | Layoffs Planned at NortonLifeLock – Infosecurity Magazine

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

American software company NortonLifeLock is planning to axe over 140 jobs in two states to cut costs.

According to a report published on December 30 in newspaper Community Impact, the security business plans to lay off 42 employees at their Granite Parkway site in Plano, Texas, in the coming months. 

A total of 34 Plano positions are expected to be terminated by mid-January, with an additional eight roles expected to be scrapped by mid-February.

Texas isn’t the only state in which NortonLifeLock plans to cut jobs in 2020. The San Francisco Business Times reported on December 31 that roughly 100 NortonLifeLock employees based in California will lose their jobs over the next few months. 

Vincent Pilette, CEO of NortonLifeLock, told the newspaper that the company is not only axing jobs but also selling off real estate in a major effort to reduce costs and help drive earnings growth. 

Arizona-based NortonLifeLock was previously known as Symantec. The company underwent a rebranding after its enterprise cybersecurity business was acquired by San Jose chipmaker Broadcom for around $11bn in the summer of 2019.

In recent weeks, the Wall Street Journal has reported that NortonLifeLock’s cybersecurity rival McAfee may put in a bid to buy the company’s consumer business, challenging existing private equity bidders Permira and Advent International.

On August 8, the same day that Broadcom’s acquisition of Symantec was publicized, Symantec announced plans to lay off roughly 7 percent of its employees during fiscal year 2020.  

At its Mountain View headquarters, 152 jobs were expected to be terminated, along with a further 18 positions in San Francisco and 36 roles in Culver City, Los Angeles County. 

The layoffs were expected to have been completed by the end of March 2020, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

NortonLifeLock has more than 11,000 employees worldwide and serves more than 50 million people with Norton antivirus software and LifeLock identity theft protection.

The Chronicle reported in September that the newly acquired Symantec would be closing or downsizing various facilities and data centers at an estimated cost of approximately $100m.

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#infosec | Emsisoft Declares Ransomware Crisis – Infosecurity Magazine

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

Internationally renowned security software company Emsisoft has declared a ransomware crisis and called on governments to take immediate action to improve their security and mitigate risks. 

So serious is the threat posed by ransomware that the New Zealand company has published a report into the effects of the malware on the United States three weeks earlier than planned in an effort to prevent further attacks.

The State of Ransomware in the US: Report and Statistics 2019 was rushed out today along with a plea for urgent action. The publication date was revised following the recent $1 million Maze ransomware attack on the Florida city of Pensacola. 

“This report was originally scheduled to be published on January 1st, 2020. We have, however, decided to release it immediately due to a recent incident in which a ransomware attack may have resulted in a municipal government’s data falling into the hands of cyber-criminals,” wrote Emsisoft researchers.

“We believe this development elevates the ransomware threat to crisis level and that governments must act immediately to improve their security and mitigate risks. If they do not, it is likely that similar incidents will also result in the extremely sensitive information which governments hold being stolen and leaked.” 

So far this year, 948 government agencies, educational establishments and healthcare providers in the United States have been impacted by ransomware. According to the report, the potential cost of these attacks could exceed $7.5 billion.

As a result of the unprecedented swathe of attacks, emergency patients had to be redirected to other hospitals, medical records were lost, and surgeries were cancelled. Some attacks interrupted 911 services, forcing dispatch centers to rely on printed maps and paper logs to track emergency responders in the field. 

Emsisoft CTO Fabian Wosa said: “The fact that there were no confirmed ransomware-related deaths in 2019 is simply due to good luck, and that luck may not continue into 2020. Governments and the health and education sectors must do better.”

The report cites research which has found that governments are failing to implement basic and well-established cybersecurity best practices, even when legally required to do so.

Emsisoft researchers have called for improved security standards and oversight, more guidance, better public-private sector cooperation and the implementation of legislative restrictions on ransom payments. They have also urged vendors and service providers to innovate and collaborate to win the ongoing fight against ransomware.

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#infosec | Cybercrime Triples in Scotland – Infosecurity Magazine

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

The number of cybercrimes recorded by the Scottish police has more than tripled in a year, according to Scottish newspaper The Herald.

In an article published yesterday, the paper said that new statistics released by the force show that from April to September this year, 4,495 cybercrimes were recorded, including stalking, sexual crimes, and fraud. 

The figures represent an increase of 315% when compared to the same time period in 2018. 

The total figure of recorded cybercrimes could climb higher as data has not yet been received from all divisions. 

Police told the Scottish newspaper that the jump in recorded cybercrimes could be down to better detection and identification techniques rather than a sudden electronic crime-wave. 

“We did not have the means with some of the legacy technology to adequately capture the digital element of all the things that are happening. Now with a bit more sophistication, we can capture the digital nature of a whole series of different crimes,” said Deputy Chief Constable Malcolm Graham.

The Scottish police are currently running a “Tag it, Mark it, Log it” campaign to encourage officers and staff to identify and mark any crimes that are found to have a cyber-element.

Graham said: “There is not an offense of cybercrime, so we are looking at other crimes that have a digital element.”

Graham said that cybercrime had moved far beyond the public perception of targeted attacks and was now closely interwoven with almost all forms of criminality.

“It’s without boundaries. The victims and the perpetrators are not necessarily going to be in the same place. It might be domestic abuse, it might be an organized crime group based in the same area.” 

“But the growing experience is that the victims and the perpetrators are dislocated, nationally, and potentially internationally, so a big element of this is our ability to work with other national and international law enforcement agencies, the National Crime Agency, the security services, and to grow that cooperation to sharing info we need so people in other jurisdictions can be held to account.”

According to Graham, of all the crimes the modern police face, “the vast majority” feature an electronic or digital element either in their execution or in their detection.

“Every crime type certainly could have a digital footprint. I am not saying every single crime would. But there is always going to be some element of evidence that is digital,” said Graham.

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InfoSecurity Connect

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

General Cybersecurity Conference

 March 5 – 7, 2018 | San Diego, California, United States

Cybersecurity Conference Description 

This gathering of North America’s most successful and innovative financial organizations is for ONLY senior level executives. It’s a forum for only those looking to improve strategy, benchmark with peers and gain insights to similar challenges.

Experience 1-to-1 consultative meetings with only the most relevant and innovative solution providers for you. This unique feature matches you with services and solutions that make sense for your business, allowing you to evaluate new technologies up close.

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Infosecurity Magazine conference – Supporting Business Transformation with Agile Cybersecurity

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Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

Infosecurity Magazine conference – Supporting Business Transformation with Agile Cybersecurity

December 6 – 7, 2016 | Boston, MA, USA
Cyber Conference Overview:
The Infosecurity Magazine Conference is a two-day information security event, curated and brought to you by the Infosecurity Magazine editorial team. This conference brings together 100+ information security

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