…And their consequences could re-echo far beyond national borders: on Tuesday, one of the biggest Estonian banks, SEB Eesti Uhispank, had to block its online banking service because of a digital attack. According to officials, such “massive cyber-attack” was launched at noon and it blocked the access to the bank’s website.
As confirmed by the head of communication at the bank, Mr.Silver Vohu, “Access was restored at 2:00 pm (1100 GMT), but only for users in Estonia. Access from computers located outside Estonia will continue to be restricted for security reasons,” he said.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Mr. Vohu said the attacks on SEB bank’s Internet banking service had “tried to overload the website with various requests so that normal access would fail.” He then got on saying that as soon as they saw the problem, bank’s security experts promptly set to work in order to restore the service and keep customer’s data safe.
Experts at Panda Labs detected the new Mpack malware, a tool that can be used to download malicious software into remote computers. The principle is simple: the attacker choose a malware and use it to infect a number of computers. Last statistics reported by Panda Labs focus on a case of 160.000 machines that were infected through this Mpack malware. Such data was obtained thanks to the “statistics component” of the tool itself.
The software is conceived to let cyber pranksters have the full control of the attacked machines, indeed it allow to monitor data passing through them. Moreover, the attacker can group the computers affected by the malware by operating system or browser.
The tool can be purchased for $700 on on-line forums. The price include one year’s free support.
TV, radio and newspapers from all over the world often linger on the costs of terrorism, but what is not so often mentioned are the costs of the fight to terrorism. While dealing with such costs, we do not refer to how much money were spent to set up proper countermeasures against terrorist attacks, but to the consequences of a sort of Hysteria that affected whole western society from September 11th on.
Terrorism is undoubtedly a threat that must be fought with all means, but we should take care to avoid that this state of alert will turn us into witch hunters, and we should prevent the fear of terrorism from damaging us much more than terrorism itself.Need some examples? Earlier this year, specifically on January 4th, the CNN apologized after mistakenly putting the name of US Senator Barack Obama as a caption on a story about Osama Bin Laden.
We often witnessed that wars and riots have also a digital form. Take in example few cases from recent history: the conflict between Israel and Lebanon has been transferred to digital ground through the rise of
defacements with anti-war messages and, as it seems, cyber-war will not be over soon . Or consider riots provoked by the publication of satiric pictures about Holy Prophet Mohammed. Reactions were definitely strong in Islamic world, both in streets and on-line .
As things stand, no surprise that the protest that took place some week ago in Estonia because of the removal of a “Red Army memorial” had also digital consequences. As riots started in Tallinn, some governmental websites , such as Foreign Ministry site, got defaced and even the website of Prime Minister’s party, Reform Party ‚was attacked. Prime Minister Andrus Ansip, has been just the main supporter of the move to relocate the memorial.
Zone-H often deals with identity theft. We use to explore methods, vulnerabilities and particular cases that could lead to such frauds in order to inform our audience on the invaluable damages that they could provoke to normal people.
But maybe, no theory or analysis can be as much effective as the words of people who has been victim of an identity fraud. No technical statistics can be more clear than the rage emerging from the story of an innocent man whose family, job and life were destroyed because his personal details were stolen in 1998, while he was shopping on-line on a legal and popular website.
The following story was published few days ago in ORE EXPOSED website . Both the website and the story refer to Operation Ore , an enquiry carried out by British Police against digital crime. Operation Ore was launched in the UK in May 2002, when UK authorities claimed they had the names of 7,272 UK citizens who had paid to view on-line child pornography. Hundreds of people were involved and many of theme were completely innocent, as the enquiry itself demonstrated later .But in the meantime, they lost everything, and someone lost his life as well.