This story, published August 4, 2011 and written by Somini Sengupta, displays the headline, "Guardians of Internet Security Are Targets" and is one of the most recent occurrences of security breaches by systems hackers. What sets this one apart from theirs is, the victim was a security firm hired to protect sensitive government data. Read the full story in NYT technology section
NEWS Technology report of 1 April 2011 provides details in a story carrying the following headline and excerpt:
Sites hit in massive web attack!
Hundreds of thousands of websites appear to have been compromised by a massive cyber attack. The hi-tech criminals used a well-known attack vector that exploits security loopholes on other sites to insert a link to their website. Those visiting the criminals' webpage were told that their machines were infected with many different viruses. Swift action by security researchers read more!
Other Web sources carrying the story:
Samsung Wave Forum
Websense which broke the story - Latest Update, plus the following:
Many of the URLs displayed on the Websense website as having been associated with the Liza Moon attack began with "hxxp" instead of "http" so we thought it necessary to include an explanation (as published by Wikipedia) of "hxxp" for some perspective on motivation as well as legitimacy.
Read MIGUEL HELFT NY Times Article, After Breach, Companies Warn of E-Mail Fraud, published: April 4, 2011. Here's an excerpt:
Security experts said Monday that millions of people were at increased risk of e-mail swindles after a giant security breach at an online marketing firm.
Read our article, Basics in Web Security and Protection, further down this page for more on the subject of web security & protection.
Other reports of Web security breaches and Web hackings:
Reported in a John Markoff / David Barboza NY Times article, published 6-1-11:
Google Says Hackers in China Stole Gmail Passwords
Reported in a Brian Stelter NY Times article, published 6-1-11:
Web Hackings Rattle Media Companies
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Basics in Web Security and Protection
Over the last ten years the Web has become an important part of our daily lives,so much so that today the Internet has practically replaced encyclopedias in the average American household. Many people rely on the Web to perform their daily tasks, including office work, homework, and to create and/or locate useful information. It is therefore very important that the information you get from the Web retrieved in a safe and proper manner. It is also extremely important for those working online to protect their computer from loss data, misuse, and abuse.
Let's take a business, for example; it is crucial that businesses keep the information they have in a secured manner in order to protect it from hackers on the Web, who may otherwise access the information and distribute it in a way that could damage the business' reputation on the Web.
Home users also need to take steps to make sure that their credit card numbers and security codes are protected when they participate in transactions on the Web. A the Web security risk can result in loss of your information, software, data, incompatibilities, or cause damage to your computer hardware, all of which are designed to do damage. Many of these harmful acts and occurrences have been identified and tagged as criminal activities.
An intentional breach in security while on the Web is known as a computer crime which is slightly different from a cypercrime. A cybercrime is known as illegal acts specific to the Web and is one of the FBI’s top priorities. There are are also several distinct categories created to identify people on the Web who are responsible for committing these cybercrimes.
These categories of Web cyber-criminals are referred as hackers, crackers, cyber-terrorists, cyber-extortionists, unethical employees, script kiddies and corporate spies, among others which are certain to be created as these groups and the cyber crimes they commit against Web surfers, researchers and users become more sophisticated.
Sony exec to brief media Sunday on data theft
Here are a excerpts from that report:
Sony's No.2 official, Kazuo Hirai, will brief media on Sunday about a huge security breach of its PlayStation Network, the first time an executive of the Japanese electronics giant will publicly address the case, which could prompt global legal actions."
"Sony warned on Tuesday that hackers had stolen names, addresses, and possibly credit card details from 77 million user accounts of its online video game network, which produces an estimated $500 million in annual revenues."
The following descriptions are just a few:
The term hacker was originally defined in very positive terms but has gradually taken on a very negative connotation. A hacker is defined as someone who gains access to a computer or computer network unlawfully. S/he often claims that this action is taken in order to find a leak or leaks in the security of a network. The term cracker has never been associated with anything positive, it has always referred to someone who intentionally access a computer or computer network for destructive reasons. A cracker is basically an destructive hacker who steals information. Both crackers and hackers are very advanced in computer use and internet systems skills. A cyberterrorist is someone who uses a computer network or the internet to destroy computers for political reasons. The activities of a cyberterrorist are similar to those of a regular offline terrorist attack because they require highly skilled individuals, millions of dollars to initiate and implement, and years of planning. The term cyberextortionist is someone who uses emails as an offensive force. They would usually send very threatening emails to a company stating that they will release some confidential information, exploit a security leak, or launch an attack that will harm a company’s network, if the company refuses to meet their demands. Such demands are usually a sum of cash paid, after which they promise not to proceed, similar to blackmail. An unethical employee is an employee that illegally gains access to their company’s network for numerous reasons. One could be the money they can get from selling top secret information, or some may be bitter and want revenge. A script kiddie is someone who is like a cracker in the sense that s/he may have the intentions of doing harm, but is usually lacking the technical skills necessary to carry out the wrong doing. The individual may be a silly teenagers that revert to the use of pre-written hacking and/or cracking programs. A corporate spy has extremely high computer and network skills and is hired to break into a specific computer or computer (system) network to steal or delete data and information. Shady companies hire these type people in a practice known as corporate espionage. They do this to gain an advantage over their competition. It is obviously an illegal practice.
Businesses and people working from home as well as those who do their shopping on the Web must do their best to protect or safeguard their important information from security risks. We will provide additional information on this subject in order to give you some pointers to make steps that will help to increase protection of your documents and other private information while on the Web. However, one must remember that there is really no such thing as a one hundred percent guarantee way to protect yourself while on the Web, so becoming more knowledgeable about them is a must if you are intent on getting the best protection for your own as well as your business information.
This NY Times EDITORIAL, A New Internet Privacy Law? Published: March 18, 2011 provides more relevant information on the subject.
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Typically, they are a number of fundamental installations an online site proprietor must evaluate before creating an eCommerce internet pages. These criteria become even more important if the website is expected to meet standards set forth by the eCommerce business community.
Due to the regulations and the need to put their customers at ease, eCommerce website owners understand the need to install safeguards and protections against thievery, sham, and loss of a customer's information as well as against fines and/or imprisonment as a result of neglect.
Removing Spyware From Your Computer
Read the great article, "5 Email Security Tips to Protect Your Small Business"