Like Russia’s war continues in Ukraine, the Biden White House is struggling to use all the tools at his disposal in countering or, ideally, preempting Kremlin-backed cyberattacks. But as the physical carnage continues, WIRED took a look at explosive damage and how explosive trauma actually works.
Meanwhile, the European Union is working on massive international facial recognition system which links databases of millions of photographs of faces. Meta booked independent research on the value of end-to-end encryption for human rights and opportunities for a permanent end to the crypto wars. And law enforcement agencies in Germany and the United States confiscated $25 million worth of bitcoins and closed the Russian-language darknet marketplace Hydrawhile hindering the operation of its criminal money laundering and exchange services.
Firewall Maker WatchGuard covered the vulnerability even after it was heavily exploited by a Russian hacker group. And we looked at two problems related to the blockchain: complete inadequacy NFT security and privacy protection, as well as security flaws that leave “blockchain bridges” vulnerable to stealing currency.
And if you’re looking for a long weekend book, WIRED has an early excerpt from an upcoming book by reporter Andy Greenberg. Tracers in the Dark: Global Hunt for Cryptocurrency Crime Bosseswhat details International Law Enforcement Efforts to Dismantle Notorious Child Sexual Abuse Platform Welcome to the video.
But wait, that’s not all. We’ve compiled all the news that we haven’t disclosed or covered in detail this week. Click on the headings to read all stories. And stay safe there.
The Transportation Security Administration confirmed on Friday that it was checking information on some passengers on Amtrak trains against a list of people under terrorist surveillance. Amtrak demanded that TSA start the program and the Department of Homeland Security announced its launch in December as part of an Amtrak rail passenger threat assessment. BUT report on Wednesday highlighted the privacy impact assessment for the first time, which describes an ongoing review. “To conduct the assessment, Amtrak will provide the TSA with the Rail Passenger Identifiable Information (PII) collected over several months for the TSA to match against the Threat Screening Center (TSC) Terrorist Screening Database (TSDB), commonly known as the “Watchlist.” , DHS said in December. Those months have already passed. If anyone flags the shows, the privacy impact assessment says that, at least for now, TSA will only provide anonymous rider information to Amtrak, not their names.
Microsoft said Thursday that it has confiscated domains used to attack Ukrainian institutions by the Russian military-intelligence hacker group APT 28, known as Fancy Bear. The group used the infrastructure to attack Ukrainian media groups, geopolitical think tanks and government institutions. Using the legal tactic it had relied on earlier, Microsoft secured a court order on April 6 allowing the takeover of the domain.
Earlier this week, the Ukrainian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) warned of new phishing attempts targeting Ukrainian and European Union government agencies. CERT links the attacks to a Russian hacker group known as Armageddon, Gamaredon, or Primitive Bear. The attacks included phishing emails about Russia’s war in Ukraine that encouraged victims to inadvertently download malware.
Block Inc’s Cash App notified 8.2 million current and former customers in the US this week of a data breach that resulted in a former employee gaining access to user account information. The data exposed in the hack includes client names, brokerage account numbers and, in some cases, portfolio value, one-day trading activity, and holdings. The company says the incident occurred on December 10, 2021, when a former fraudulent employee, who had already left the company at the time, downloaded internal reports from the Cash App system, to which they still had access.
AT interview with Atlantic Editor Jeffrey Goldberg on Wednesday, former US President Barack Obama said that during his presidency he did not expect the extent to which disinformation would affect the stability of democracies around the world. “This is something I have experienced many times during my presidency. I saw it unfold, and that’s the extent to which information — disinformation, disinformation — was used as a weapon, and we saw it,” Obama said. “But I think I underestimated the vulnerability of democracies, including ours.” He later added, “You have to fight to give people the information they need to be free and self-governing. It’s not just inevitable.”
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