Security News This Week: Even CIA and NSA Use Ad Blockers to Stay Safe Online


All that way also recently this week as well Ransomware is rampant in the news headlines, hit a key Iowa grain cooperative, among other targets. and WIRED sat down with DeSnake, the first number two in the dark web marketplace AlphaBay, to hear about its reemergence and also launch AlphaBay four years after it took over law enforcement. “AlphaBay’s name was put in a bad light after the raid. I’m here to fix that,” DeSnake said.

Groundhog Day vibes continues with the annual release of Apple’s latest mobile operating system, iOS 15. The new OS has a killing privacy features, including lots of detailed details about what’s in your apps, a mechanism to block email trackers, and a class VPN-Tor Frankenstein monster called iCloud Private Relay that protects your browsing activity. Use the easy -to -use WIRED tutorial to get up to speed and start changing some settings.

And if you want a DIY project that doesn’t look like a tech company’s wall garden, we have tips how to set up your own network attached storage (NAS) that plugs directly into your router and gives you a place to share files between your devices or quickly store backups.

And there is more! Each week we focus on all the WIRED security news not covered in depth. Click on the news headlines to read the full stories, and stay safe there.

A letter to Congress shared with Motherboard indicates that the U.S. National Security Agency, the Central Intelligence Agency, and other members of the Intelligence Community use ad blockers on their networks as a security protection. “IC implements network -based technologies that block ad and uses information from multiple layers, including Domain Name System information, to prevent unwanted and harmful advertising content,” the headline wrote. to the IC in the letter.

You can use an ad blocker to make your browsing experience more enjoyable, but the tools also have potential defensive benefits. Attackers who try to run malicious ads on dishonest ad networks or contaminate legitimate-looking ads can steal data or release malware on your device when you click, or sometimes by taking advantage of web vulnerabilities. The fact that the IC views ads as an unnecessary risk and even a threat speaks to the industry’s long -standing problems. The NSA and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency have issued public instruction in recent years advising the use of ad blockers as a security protection, but the IC itself does not have to take the step. Its members voluntarily deployed.

The security division of Russian telecom giant Rostelecom took part in a notorious botnet this week, thanks to a mistake introduced by the developers of the malicious platform. The error allowed Rostelecom to “sink“Part of the system. A botnet is an army of zombie devices infected with malware to control the center’s coordination operations. Platforms are often used for DDoS attacks, where actors conduct a firehose to waste traffic on web systems to a target in an attempt to overdo it.

The Meris botnet is currently the most widely used botnet by cybercriminals and is thought to consist of about 250,000 systems working together. It is used against targets in Russia, the United States, and the United Kingdom, among others. The Rostelecom partial takedown is important, as the Meris attacks are powerful and challenging for the targets to fight. Earlier this month, a Meris attack on Russian tech giant Yandex broke the record for the most volumetric DDoS attacks. Yandex has defended itself against attack.

European law enforcement in Italy and Spain have arrested 106 people on suspicion of running a series of fraud campaigns over several years, with revenues totaling more than $ 11.7 million last year alone. And police said last week that the individuals involved were linked to an Italian mafia group. The suspects allegedly ran phishing schemes, committed scams to compromise business email, launched SIM exchange attacks, and generally committed credit card fraud against hundreds of victims. The activity was also said to be connected to drug trafficking and other property -related offenses. To actually get the funds out of the digital scams, the suspects allegedly laundered the stolen money through a system of money launderers and shell companies. In addition to the arrests, law enforcement froze 118 bank accounts and seized computers, SIM cards, 224 credit cards, and an entire cannabis plantation in connection with the bust.


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