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Friday, June 21, 2024

The LastPass Hack Somehow Gets Worse

Chinese hackers proved themselves to be as prolific and invasive as ever this week with new findings revealing that in February 2022, Beijing-backed hackers compromised the email server of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, an intergovernmental body of 10 Southeast Asian countries. The security alert, first reported by WIRED, comes as China has escalated its hacking in the region amidst rising tensions.

Meanwhile, with Russia facing economic sanctions over its invasion of Ukraine, the Kremlin has been trying to address gaps in its tech sector. Now, we've learned, it's scrambling to get a home-brewed Android phone off the ground this year. The National Computer Corporation company, a Russian IT giant, says it will somehow produce and sell 100,000 smartphones and tablets by the end of 2023. Though Android is an open-source platform, there are steps Google could take to restrict the license for the new Russian phone that could ultimately force the project to seek a different mobile operating system.

At the Network and Distributed System Security Symposium in San Diego this week, researchers from Ruhr University Bochum and the CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security presented findings that popular DJI quadcopters communicate using unencrypted radio signals that can be intercepted to determine where the drones are, as well as the GPS coordinates of their operators. The researchers discovered the exposed communications by reverse engineering DJI's radio protocol, DroneID.

In the US, a long-awaited national cybersecurity plan from the White House finally debuted on Thursday. In focuses in part on familiar priorities like hardening defenses for critical infrastructure and and expanding efforts to disrupt cybercriminal activity. But the plan also includes a proposal to shift legal liability for vulnerabilities and security failures onto the companies who cause them, like software makers or institutions that don't make a reasonable effort to protect sensitive data.

If you want to do something good for your cyber hygiene this weekend, we've got a roundup of the most pressing software patches to download ASAP. Seriously, go install them now, we'll wait here.

And there's more. Each week, we round up the security news we didn’t cover in-depth ourselves. Click the headlines to read the full stories, and stay safe out there.

The Catastrophic LastPass Breach Was Even Worse Than It Seemed

In December, the password-manager maker LastPass revealed that an August breach it had disclosed at the end of November was worse than the company originally thought, compromising encrypted copies of some users’ password vaults, on top of other personal information. Now, the company has disclosed a second incident that began in mid-August and allowed attackers to rampage through the company's cloud storage and exfiltrate sensitive data. Attackers gained such extraordinary access by targeting a specific LastPass employee with deep system privileges 

“This was accomplished by targeting [a] DevOps engineer’s home computer and exploiting a vulnerable third-party media software package, which enabled remote code execution capability and allowed the threat actor to implant keylogger malware,” LastPass wrote in an account of the situation. “The threat actor was able to capture the employee’s master password as it was entered, after the employee authenticated with MFA, and gain access to the DevOps engineer’s LastPass corporate vault.”

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To target the LastPass employee, attackers exploited a Plex Media Server software vulnerability that had already been long-patched at the time. The company issued a fix for the bug in May 2020, “roughly 75 versions ago,” Plex said.

US Marshals Data Compromised in “Major Incident”

US law enforcement officials said on Monday that a stand-alone US Marshals Service network suffered a data exfiltration and ransomware attack in mid-February. “The affected system contains law enforcement sensitive information, including returns from legal process, administrative information, and personally identifiable information pertaining to subjects of USMS investigations, third parties, and certain USMS employees,” Marshals Service spokesperson Drew Wade said in a statement. The impacted data seemingly did not include information from the Witness Security Program or witness protection database. Nonetheless, Wade said that officials had “determined that it constitutes a major incident.”

Hackers Say They Infiltrated T-Mobile More Than 100 Times During 2022

Three cybercriminal groups that conduct SIM-swapping attacks have claimed that they repeatedly hacked T-Mobile last year as part of their scams. The groups would target T-Mobile employees with phishing attacks to gain access to internal company systems. Then they would sell this access to other cybercriminals to intercept individual T-Mobile customers’ SMS text messages and calls on attacker-controlled devices. The findings come from an analysis by Krebs on Security of Telegram chat activity of the three SIM-swapping gangs.

T-Mobile declined to confirm or deny the claims to Krebs on Security. “We have continued to drive enhancements that further protect against unauthorized access, including enhancing multi-factor authentication controls, hardening environments, limiting access to data, apps or services, and more,” the telecom said in a statement. “We are also focused on gathering threat intelligence data, like what you have shared, to help further strengthen these ongoing efforts.”

Texas Republicans Propose Bill That Would Force ISPs to Block Abortion Websites

A bill filed last week in Texas by Representative Steve Toth would mandate that Texas internet service providers block websites that offer information about receiving abortion care. The bill would also outlaw domain registration and hosting for websites that help Texas residents obtain abortions, either through fundraising, procuring abortifacient drugs, or sharing resources. The proposal lists specific examples of websites that would have to be blocked, including aidaccess.org, heyjane.co, plancpills.org, mychoix.co, justthepill.com, and carafem.org.

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