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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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#infosec #itsecurity #hacking #hacker #computerhacker #blackhat #ceh #ransomeware #maleware #ncs #nationalcybersecurityuniversity #defcon #ceh #cissp #computers #cybercrime #cybercrimes #technology #jobs #itjobs #gregorydevans #ncs #ncsv #certifiedcybercrimeconsultant #privateinvestigators #hackerspace #nationalcybersecurityawarenessmonth #hak5 #nsa #computersecurity #deepweb #nsa #cia #internationalcybersecurity #internationalcybersecurityconference #iossecurity #androidsecurity #macsecurity #windowssecurity
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#deepweb | How Heather Corinna Started the Online Sex Education Revolution – Ms. Magazine

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

Information on sexual health permeates the contemporary Internet—from Instagram moguls with a sex ed agenda to crowdsourced Wikipedia entries on gender identities to Netflix original series on the joys and perils of adolescent sexploration. Unfortunately, much of this information is far from comprehensive, and at times unreliable.

But it could be worse: Heather Corinna remembers a time when this wild west of resources was nothing more than a desolate wasteland. That is, before 1998, when they founded pioneering sex education website Scarleteen to answer the questions of tech-savvy and body-curious youths.

Over two decades later, Corinna opened up to Ms. about how much has changed since they pushed through the tumbleweeds of an early Internet—dishing on the origins of their career, their freshly minted graphic novel and the fickle state of sex education.

Tell me a little bit about the original website you hosted that prompted you to start Scarleteen.

Just to backtrack a little bit: starting Scarleteen: It was not something I meant to be a full-time job! [My original website], Scarlet Letters, was meant mostly to focus on women’s experiences with sexuality; it had some smut, some advice, some literary pieces. And because it was one of the few things about sex and sexuality that was on the web at the time, I presume that’s why young people were ending up there, because they were looking for anything on sex and sexuality. So they started to write in.

This was before abstinence-only education and purity pledges, and because it was then and not now, what they were writing in was not particularly complex stuff. Like: “How do I take the birth control pill properly? How do I figure out what I like with my boyfriend?”

My mother was in public health my whole life, my dad was an activist and I’d been a teacher already for a while, so I could answer their questions. The nature of the questions wasn’t very complicated, so putting together Scarleteen I figured I would put up five or 10 pages as a supplement and that would be fine.

Of course, what I wasn’t aware of is that even by that point in the mid-90s a lot of people were not getting sex ed in school or anywhere else. So I put up those pages and it kind of exploded and everybody started writing letters. So, naturally, the questions coming in didn’t necessarily stay so fast and easy. I had to basically stop teaching in person. I had to make a decision to do Scarleteen full time and once it took off it kind of ate my life.

What went into that decision to choose Scarleteen and make that your full-time passion?

Well, it certainly wasn’t the ability to support myself! For me, it was just that I already liked working in sexuality with adults but the need did not feel as compelling. I’m not sure if I would have made the same decision if there had been other sites that appeared to be serving this need. A lot of my nature as a person has to do with service—if somebody needs a thing that I have the ability to provide, then it seems like I should do it. And a lot of the feedback that I was getting when I started doing Scarleteen was young people saying that they had a hard time finding other adults who had [sexual health] information who they could talk to, who wouldn’t shame them, who didn’t have innate problems with sex, who talked to them with respect, who talked to them like they were people who are becoming adults and who weren’t embarrassed.

When you were growing up, did you see anything like a pre-Scarleteen?

I can’t think of anything like [Scarleteen] when I was growing up, but I’d definitely say it has forbearers and parents. I remember as a young person being buried in “Our Bodies, Ourselves”—there’s no way I could do this without that book and all of the little legs of the feminist, self-help health movement in the 70’s.

I think about growing up reading Judy Blume; she wrapped quite a bit of really excellent sex and body information into what she did. I think about “Free to be You and Me;” there’s a lot of stuff about gender equity and fairness in relationships. I think about the initial initiatives to provide information about HIV and AIDS, which were very grassroots and street, because health care providers and the whole government in America was denying what was happening. So I think there are a lot of organic parents of Scarleteen.

How would you say sex educators have changed since you entered the field?

About five years ago, we had an intern start who was 19 and who was talking about how she knew she wanted to be a sex educator since she was 12. It was lovely, because when I was 12, that wasn’t a job! There was no way I would have ever gotten the idea that was a job, whereas someone who’s 12 now, if they’re just watching YouTube, they can see that it’s a job.

I do think that one of the biggest changes is that you have young people, when they are still young people, identifying that this is an area of work that they want to get started in and get involved with. And that’s a massive difference.

If you were to compare the sexual education climate when you started Scarleteen to the climate today, what would you say has changed or stayed the same?

It’s interesting because there’s definitely some things that have gotten worse in the interim and some things that have gotten better. Adults in general are still scared of speaking to their kids about sex and sexuality but you know, the 80’s and 90’s was kind of the hay day for really good sex information. It wasn’t very highly policed and massive conservatism in the United States was kind of at a low. When I first started Scarleteen in ’98, I wasn’t answering questions from people who were in deep, deep shame from having been sexual because you didn’t have all of this “purity” culture.

Then, of course, when the Bush administration came in, and you had billions of dollars going to abstinence-based initiatives—the opposite of sex education. So right now, we’re still at a point where people are fighting to get back good sex ed. But now that fight includes people saying: “Oh, and by the way, we want our sex ed to include queer people, we want it to include trans and gender nonconforming people and we want it to recognize that not everybody is going to get married and have babies.”

What are some of the biggest challenges at Scarleteen?

One of the biggest challenges right now is that I’m the oldest person at Scarleteen by a very serious long shot, but that’s by design. Coming from a generational place that was very, very sex positive and really sexual to a generation that is full of purity culture and has a lot of shame and extra fear is definitely challenging. It’s not the easiest thing for me to relate to. I had a lot of things that I was scared of growing up, but sex was one of the few things that I wasn’t scared of. From a personal perspective, I need to work a little bit harder to connect.

What are some aspects of traditional classroom sex ed that you’ve consciously brought into Scarleteen, versus ones that you’ve consciously ditched?

My teaching background is Montessori and Unschooling, so I’m not a fan of compulsory education. One of the things I like best about Scarleteen is that nobody is forced to be here. So nobody’s suffering through an education that they’re not ready for, that they don’t want or isn’t relevant to them. Having things be opt-in, rather than compulsory is a really big thing for me.

So, we try to make sure that what we’re doing is based on what young people are asking for, whether that ask is super explicit, or whether that ask is based on a trend that we’re noticing. In a lot of any education, what’s being presented is being decided by the educators. One of the things I’ll often hear as a sex educator is, “when I was a teenager, I wanted [to learn] ‘X’”—which would be great if we were going back in time, but generally, that’s not a good basis for figuring out what somebody who’s an adolescent now wants. They could be a radically different person from you, so what you wanted or needed 20 or 30 years ago is not necessarily helpful in figuring out what an adolescent right now wants.

Are there any projects or programs that you really feel fulfilled by right now with Scarleteen?

On September 3rd, our comic, Wait, What? A Comic Book Guide to Relationships, Bodies, and Growing Up came out! The comic is for middle readers and what we wanted to focus on is how young people—10 to 11- or 15-year-olds—can talk with each other about basic issues, so that readers in this age group can see a good model of how to be supportive of each other. For example, how to talk about gender roles, boyfriends and girlfriends, crushes and feeling awkward in bodies. There’s absolutely some sexual anatomy [in the book]; there’s some stuff about gender identity, orientation, how to build a support group, how people use virginity constructs to make other people feel bad… for 75 pages, there’s a lot! For example, there’s one character who says he’s worried that his genitals are weird, and our approach is to say that genitals are weird—so, we have two pages of illustrations of different ways genitals can look!

Separate from Scarleteen, I just got a contract to write a guide to perimenopause and menopause: What Fresh Hell is This: Perimenopause, Menopause, Other Indignities, and You–A Guide. By and large, a lot of [the perimenopause and menopause literature] out there assumes that you’re cisgender, assumes that you’re straight, assumes that you had kids, assumes that you’re married to a man. It’s meant for a very different generation than Gen Xers.

[This book]’s pretty much going to be: you’re in this, this is going to be terrible, this is what’s going to happen, this is how we’re going to keep from killing people and hopefully come out on the other side. I want to make a list of everyone that’s been in perimenopause and hasn’t killed anyone. Just as a little inspiration just to be like: see, if they did it, you can do it. YOU can not kill anyone through this process.

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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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The 2016 July STEAMed Magazine has Arrived!

Whew! We all made it. Summer is in full swing and I hope you are taking time to savor every little moment of it. Whether you are planning for the upcoming school year, taking on […]

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Get Featured in the July 2016 Issue of STEAMed Magazine

We know you have a story to share educators, and we want to help feature your incredible work this school year.  If you’d like to get your project, lesson, or idea featured in the July […]

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2016 April STEAMed Magazine is Here!

Are you ready for a jolt of STEAM inspiration this spring?  Well look no further – the 2016 April STEAMed Magazine issue is finally here! Each quarter (in January, April, July and October), we publish this FREE digital magazine for you to download and use in your classroom.  Each issue is jam-packed with lessons, resources and ideas from teachers who are doing some inspiring work with arts integration and STEAM.  And we also have the […]

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