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   Non-TechBinary Hodgepodge


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To: Ron who wrote (6754)2/10/2024 2:59:59 PM
From: Ron
   of 6760
 
Turns out the hacked toothbrush story was false, an urban legend: An update from Wired:

How 3 Million Hacked Toothbrushes Became a Cyber Urban Legend

Hackers have, in the real world, caused blackouts, set fire to a steel mill, and released worms that took down medical record systems in hospitals across the US and the UK. So it hardly seems necessary to invent new nightmares about them taking over our toothbrushes.

Yet, when the Swiss newspaper Aargauer Zeitung published a story that cybercriminals had infected 3 million internet-connected toothbrushes with malware, then used them to launch a cyberattack that downed a website for four hours and caused millions of dollars in damage, the tale was somehow irresistible. This week, news outlets around the world picked up the story, which quoted the cybersecurity firm Fortinet as its source, spinning it out as the perfect illustration of how hackers can exploit the most mundane technology for epic malevolence. “This example, which seems like a Hollywood scenario, actually happened,” the Swiss newspaper wrote.

Except, of course, it didn’t. Cybersecurity professionals quickly started to point out that the story was unsupported by any evidence—and was somewhat absurd on its face. (Even the Mirai botnet, which knocked out its targets with record-breaking tsunamis of junk traffic and eventually broke a large fraction of the internet, infected only 650,000 internet-connected devices at its peak.)

Fortinet belatedly sought to correct the record, writing in public statements that “it appears that due to translations the narrative on this topic has been stretched to the point where hypothetical and actual scenarios are blurred.” But the Aargauer Zeitung pointed the finger back at Fortinet, noting in a follow-up story that Fortinet provided exact details of the dental doomsday it described as real, and that the company even reviewed the text of the article prior to publication. Regardless of who’s to blame, at least this cyber urban legend has inspired some solid meme content.

wired.com

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From: Ron3/3/2024 10:53:19 AM
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Ransomware Georgia’s largest county is still repairing damage inflicted on its government offices by a cyberattack in January 2024.
securityweek.com

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From: Ron3/5/2024 8:56:46 AM
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The ransomware attack targeting medical firm Change Healthcare has been one of the most disruptive in years, crippling pharmacies across the US—including those in hospitals—and leading to serious snags in the delivery of prescription drugs nationwide for 10 days and counting. Now, a dispute within the criminal underground has revealed a new development in that unfolding debacle: One of the partners of the hackers behind the attack points out that those hackers, a group known as AlphV or BlackCat, received a $22 million transaction that looks very much like a large ransom payment.

On March 1, a Bitcoin address connected to AlphV received 350 bitcoins in a single transaction, or close to $22 million based on exchange rates at the time. Then, two days later, someone describing themselves as an affiliate of AlphV—one of the hackers who work with the group to penetrate victim networks—posted to the cybercriminal underground forum RAMP that AlphV had cheated them out of their share of the Change Healthcare ransom, pointing to the publicly visible $22 million transaction on Bitcoin's blockchain as proof.

That suggests, according to Dmitry Smilyanets, the researcher for security firm Recorded Future who first spotted the post, that Change Healthcare has likely paid AlphV's ransom. “You can see the number of coins that landed there. You don’t see that kind of transaction so often,” Smilyanets says. “There’s proof of a large amount landing in the AlphV-controlled Bitcoin wallet. And this affiliate connects this address to the attack on Change Healthcare. So it’s likely that the victim paid the ransom.”

A spokesperson for Change Healthcare, which is owned by UnitedHealth Group, declined to answer whether it had paid a ransom to AlphV, telling WIRED only that “we are focused on the investigation right now.”

Both Recorded Future and TRM Labs, a blockchain analysis firm, connect the Bitcoin address that received the $22 million payment to the AlphV hackers. TRM Labs says it can link the address to payments from two other AlphV victims in January.

If Change Healthcare did pay a $22 million ransom, it would not only represent a huge payday for AlphV, but also a dangerous precedent for the health care industry, argues Brett Callow, a ransomware-focused researcher with security firm Emsisoft. Every ransomware payment, he says, both funds future attacks by the group responsible and suggests to other ransomware predators that they should try the same playbook—in this case, attacking health care services that patients depend on.

wired.com

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From: Ron3/6/2024 5:12:15 PM
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UnitedHealth's cyberattack should be a 'wake-up call' for healthcare
aol.com

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From: Ron3/29/2024 11:14:29 AM
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Leaked datatracker info shows hundreds of addresses of those who flocked to Epstein's Island

wired.com


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From: Ron5/17/2024 10:44:46 PM
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A cyberattack forces a big US health system to divert ambulances and take records offline
apnews.com

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