Are Policies causing a “Federal Brain Drain,” Jekyll Malware wreaks havoc on iOS and more

August 19, 2013
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apple-logoHere are the top cyber news and stories of the day.

  • Are Washington’s policies causing a retirement ‘brain drain’ at federal agencies? ”A new online ticker from the National Active and Retired Federal Employees association claims to show the hours of institutional knowledge lost through federal-worker retirements this year, illustrating a supposed “brain drain” caused by increased retirements at a time when the government is cutting back on hiring and freezing salary rates.” The ticker displayed over 920M hours this weekend, a number which is sure to go up. Via Washington Post, more here.
  • “Jekyll” test attack sneaks through Apple App Store, wreaks havoc on iOS – “Acting like a software version of a Transformer robot, a malware test app sneaked through Apple’s review process disguised as a harmless app, and then re-assembled itself into an aggressive attacker even while running inside the iOS “sandbox” designed to isolate apps and data from each other.” The malware downloaded malicious files to the phone, after getting through the App Store review process. This may become a new route for malicious actors on iOS. Via ComputerWorld, more here.
  • US Dept. of Energy reports second security breach – “For the second time this year, the US Department of Energy is recovering from a data breach involving the personally identifying information of federal employees.” It is estimated that 14,000 employees were affected. It is unknown what the motivation for this attack is; however, it could just be PII harvesting. Via ComputerWorld, more here.
  • Dartmouth to lead cyber research project – “Dartmouth College is getting a $4 million federal grant to research better ways to protect medical records sent by cell phones, tablets and other mobile devices. The grant from the National Science Foundation is part of a nearly $10 million grant for cyber security research at four universities. Dartmouth is leading the project, which also includes Johns Hopkins University, the University of Illinois and the University of Michigan. The goal is to develop tools to better restrict access to electronic data to patients and doctors only and to better detect harmful programs on mobile devices and wireless networks.” It will be extremely interesting to see what comes of this project. Via AP, more here.
  • ‘Camfecting’ is latest form of computer hacking – Taking over someone’s webcam is becoming easier and easier a time goes by. Easy to use malware for “script kiddies” is available on the web. Recently Miss Teen USA had a similar situation happen to her, with an anonymous person emailing her, claiming to have naked pictures of the young lady. Users need to be especially careful with their webcams and digital lives. Via WRAL, more here.
  • XP Z: Microsoft scares Windows XP users straight with undead bug warning – “Microsoft yesterday warned Windows XP customers that they face never-patched, never-dead “zero-day” vulnerabilities if they don’t dump the 12-year-old operating system before its April 2014 retirement deadline.” Many users still have never migrated from XP, either for cost, or other reasons, but they will be greatly endangering their systems and users if they do not upgrade in the next year. Via ComputerWorld, more here.