Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Risk

4/23/2009
06:10 PM
George V. Hulme
George V. Hulme
Commentary
50%
50%

Social Networks A New Security Frontline

USA Today ran an interesting story about how cybercriminals are using social media in greater numbers to attack users. What started as a trickle last year has quickly sprung to an open fire hydrant, as criminals turn to low-paid grunts to crack captchas.

USA Today ran an interesting story about how cybercriminals are using social media in greater numbers to attack users. What started as a trickle last year has quickly sprung to an open fire hydrant, as criminals turn to low-paid grunts to crack captchas.According to the USA Today:

To carry out many of these automated attacks, cybercriminals first must overcome "captchas," the distorted letters and characters that users of an e-mail or social-networking account are required to type to complete certain online forms. For years, captchas have helped to stop or bog down automated programs aimed at creating, among other things, e-mail accounts that promote scams such as fake computer virus protection and bogus accounts on social websites that can be used to collect personal information on legitimate users.

Now, security specialists say, a growing number of captcha-breaking groups are using real people to type in captcha responses for cybergangs around the world. This is allowing the gangs to create fake e-mail and social-network accounts by the tens of thousands - and use them as the starting point for a variety of cyberscams spread by e-mail and instant messages.

This USA Today story is an interesting story, and worth your read.

My real concern isn't the obvious evolution of phishing attacks taking place here, or the fact that thieves are predictably working circumvent a security control. No. It's the heightened risk of highly targeted attacks that all social network media makes possible.

In the coming months and year ahead - figuring out ways to vet online social network profiles is going to become crucial. Is that person trying to connect with you on Facebook really a long-lost friend from high school, or someone who knows something about your life's history - and is using that information against you?

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
News
US Formally Attributes SolarWinds Attack to Russian Intelligence Agency
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  4/15/2021
News
Dependency Problems Increase for Open Source Components
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  4/14/2021
News
FBI Operation Remotely Removes Web Shells From Exchange Servers
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  4/14/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2021-3506
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-19
An out-of-bounds (OOB) memory access flaw was found in fs/f2fs/node.c in the f2fs module in the Linux kernel in versions before 5.12.0-rc4. A bounds check failure allows a local attacker to gain access to out-of-bounds memory leading to a system crash or a leak of internal kernel information. The hi...
CVE-2021-20208
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-19
A flaw was found in cifs-utils in versions before 6.13. A user when mounting a krb5 CIFS file system from within a container can use Kerberos credentials of the host. The highest threat from this vulnerability is to data confidentiality and integrity.
CVE-2021-27458
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-19
If Ethernet communication of the JTEKT Corporation TOYOPUC product series’ (TOYOPUC-PC10 Series: PC10G-CPU TCC-6353: All versions, PC10GE TCC-6464: All versions, PC10P TCC-6372: All versions, PC10P-DP TCC-6726: All versions, PC10P-DP-IO TCC-6752: All versions, PC10B-P TCC-6373: Al...
CVE-2020-27241
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-19
An exploitable SQL injection vulnerability exists in ‘getAssets.jsp’ page of OpenClinic GA 5.173.3. The serialnumber parameter in the getAssets.jsp page is vulnerable to unauthenticated SQL injection. An attacker can make an authenticated HTTP request to trigger...
CVE-2021-3497
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-19
GStreamer before 1.18.4 might access already-freed memory in error code paths when demuxing certain malformed Matroska files.