The ambitions of Cybercriminals reached new heights in 2016 according to a report released by Symantec on Wednesday. Symantec has highlighted the unprecedented rise in not just the number of incidents of cybercrime but in the scale of the crimes themselves.
The report highlights the simple flaws that cybercriminals are using in order to achieve their goals. Symantec stated that attackers “frequently used very simple tools and tactics in order to make a big impact”. In a shift away from using zero-day exploits and sophisticated Malware suites, attackers are now opting to “live off the land”. Living off the land involves an attacker utilizing built in Operating system features like Windows Power Shell and Macros . These features can give a cybercriminal remote access to a computer without needing a direct exploit. Instead of relying on expensive tools, attackers now rely on social engineering.
Reliance on social engineering has led to email once again becoming a favored tool with which to commit cybercrime. Email had been used to conduct every kind of attack in 2016. From the targeted attack on the Democrats emails during the US election to spreading ransomware. The report estimates that around 1 in every 131 emails is malicious. The emails generally masquerade as something innocent, making them hard to detect.
Malicious emails often contain ransomware that locks the victims computers up and demands a fee in order to unlock it. Attackers are now demanding an average of $1,077. The number of Ransomware attacks almost tripled in 2016 and emails scams have cost small businesses almost $3 billion dollars, so it really is important to double check emails before opening them.
Cybercriminals have also began to use the inherent weakness of the Internet of Things to conduct their attacks. Most IoT devices are poorly secured, with users either unable to alter the default credentials or neglecting to do so. This allows hackers to get access to a huge number of devices in order to launch devastating Direct Denial of Service attacks. The most high profile of these was Mirai, a botnet composed of poorly secured routers, security cameras and other IoT devices. Several of Mirai’s targets were cloud based services, highlighting a growing vulnerability due to the explosion of cloud based storage.
Financial attacks have also become far more ambitious. Rather than focusing upon stealing your card or bank details, cybercriminals are now going after the banks themselves. In 2016 these attacks reached new heights with the Banswift Group managing to steal $81 million from the Bangladeshi central bank. There are also fears that for the first time nation states like North Korea may now be involved in cyber bank heists. The bank attacks were sophisticated, with the attackers gaining access to the target bank’s SWIFT credentials, allowing them to make fraudulent transactions.
Cybercriminals have not just targeted people’s finances. 2016 marked a big increase in politically motivated attacks. The most notable of which is probably the attack on the Democratic party’s emails during the US elections but there have been many others. A number of disk wiping attacks were used against targets in Ukraine, resulting in major power outages and there were a number of attacks against targets in Saudi Arabia. The rise in disruptive cybercrime coincides with a reduction in activities like economic espionage and intellectual property theft, implying a shift in resources
Combined with Google’s report earlier this year, it’s clear that 2016 saw a huge rise in Cybercrime and the trend is unlikely to reverse any time soon. That said, there a number of simple steps you can take to protect yourself.
- Check emails carefully before opening them, phishing attacks rely on users not noticing slight oddities. Look out for strange email addresses like firstname.lastname@example.org or misspelled organization names.
- Don’t open attachments from unknown sources.
- It sounds simple, but change the default password on your router and other devices.
- Use a trusted VPN service when using online banking, check here for why
- Backup your data regularly to help protect yourself from any potential ransomware attacks
- Keep your devices up to date
Google appeared as a car manufacturer
Google has recently used CES as a platform to present its philosophy of “Better Together,” the notion that all devices should get along with one another. Typically, this entails making announcements regarding new Cast compatibility and features like Fast Pair. The business revealed that it is collaborating with Spotify to incorporate the Connect streaming capability into the Android UI at CES 2023. Additionally, it showed a sneak peek at an audio handoff tool that would recommend various devices to shift your music to based on your preferences and location.
However, CES is a significant vehicle event, and Google also sells items for cars. Additionally, it said today that the Polestar 3 would receive its higher-resolution maps, and it debuted the most recent Android Auto user interface for the first time since it was revealed at I/O 2022.
Two vehicles, a Volvo EX90 with Google preinstalled and a BMW i7 with the new Android Auto experience, were at the Google stand in the trailer lot of the Las Vegas Convention Center. We had never seen the Volvo before, and we’ll be posting a separate hands-on on that experience shortly. The new Android Auto is the main topic of this article and video.
The redesigned interface will support larger screen sizes and have a split screen layout, as we discovered at I/O. Google has eliminated the status bar and inserted a row of shortcut keys below it, along with some indication icons in a small area to the top left. When we were in the car, the Spotify app was located on the left panel, and we could access a list of suggested playlists by swiping in from the right side.
Alerts that you won’t have time to respond to while driving are likewise stored in this left pane. For instance, you can swipe right on a notification to move it to the dock, where it will wait until you’re ready to deal with it.
Check out the video up top for more of our experience with the updated Android Auto in the BMW i7! And be sure to pay attention this week as there will be a ton of news at CES 2023.
Apple Mini-LED Display Supplier Reports Decreasing Demand As Rumors Suggest a Switch to OLED in the Next Few Years
One of Apple’s top mini-LED suppliers claims that while the company plans to switch to OLED displays for its iPad and MacBook line in the upcoming years, demand for displays in consumer products is declining while demand for mini-LED in other applications is increasing.
According to a recent report from DigiTimes, the demand for mini-LED displays for consumer electronics devices is declining, but it is anticipated that demand for mini-LED displays for dashboards and vehicle displays will increase in 2023. Epistar, which has been supplying mini-LED displays to Apple for some time, is one company that has made this claim.
The creation of particular kinds of OLED screens that Apple intends to utilize in next iPad Pro models, according to a report published last week, is now Samsung’s top priority. The first iPad Pro with an OLED panel, which Apple is rumored to introduce in 2024, has prompted mini-LED vendors to consider alternate applications for their screens, according to DigiTimes.
In 2024, Apple is also expected to release a 13-inch MacBook Air with an OLED display in addition to an OLED iPad Pro. According to reputable display analyst Ross Young, Apple is exploring adopting an OLED panel in a planned update to the iPhone SE but is torn between employing an LCD or OLED display.
Apple Provides 10 Practical iPhone Tricks
In an effort to assist customers get the most out of their devices and teach new iPhone users some features and tips they may not have previously known about, Apple recently provided ten helpful tips and techniques for iPhone users.
Apple revealed ten tips and techniques for the new features in iOS 16 in a video on its Apple Support channel, including the ability to choose and lift subjects out of images and the newly revamped and customisable Lock Screen. As people get used to their new iPhones, the short film, which is barely six minutes long, was posted on Christmas Day.
- If you tap and hold on a subject inside of a photo in the Photos app on iOS 16, you can lift the subject from the photo and place it into another app.
- The new Lock Screen on iOS 16 allows users to customize different elements, including the color and style of the time and date, add widgets, and more.
- Within Settings -> Wi-Fi, you can select a saved Wi-Fi access point to discover and copy and paste its password.
- If you often write the same thing time and time again, such as your email or address, you can create a text replacement within Settings -> General -> Keyboard -> Text Replacement.
- If you’re running low on battery or want to save some battery life when you won’t have access to a charger, you can add the Low Power Mode toggle to Control Center for easy access. Head into Settings -> Control Center and add it to the list of Included Controls.
- If you want to share or move multiple photos into another app, simply tap and hold on a photo, move it away, and proceed to tap on the other photos. You’ll then be able to drag and drop all of the photos into other apps or places in iOS.
- If you want to quickly open the camera, tap and hold on the Camera shortcut in the bottom right-hand corner of your iPhone’s Lock Screen.
- With iOS 15 and later, you can now use Live Text to automatically translate text in the camera app or inside of a photo. In the camera app, point the camera to some text and tap on the Live Text that appears in the right-hand corner, then select translate in the options shown. This can also work for photos already taken in the Photos app.
- Using the Notes app, you can easily scan a piece of paper and create a digital copy of it. The Notes app will automatically properly crop and edit the image so the document appears legible with no glare.
- If you’re curious about what your first photo is in your photo library, you can easily discover it with one tap. In the Photos app, simply tap on the top edge of your iPhone to jump to the first photo in any specific library, album, or search result.
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