Last month we talked about the growing threat of Ransomware and its growing presence in the cyber security threat arena. Since then, in just a few weeks, the BBC, AOL, New York Times, and even the NFL have been hit by ransomware, and bad news: its growing. In case you missed the last episode of the Sierra newsletter, we discussed this malicious hacking tool and how it works. Here’s a brief explanation: a virus you unknowingly download from the internet encrypts all the data in your hard drive with only one way of unlocking it all: pay up, and pay big.
According to a report from McAfee Labs and Intel, ransomware attacks increased 26% in the last quarter of 2015 from the previous quarter. This type of threat is becoming more common for one reason: successes on the part of the perpetrators. Talk to Sierra now about how we can increase the security of not just workstations and laptops, but server data and storage data as well. Think of your data’s value before hackers do it for you.
Samsung Galaxy S7 - receives great reviews
In March the new Samsung Galaxy S7 was released and has been hailed by some as the greatest phone ever made. And after looking over the specs and reviews that have been released so far, it’s hard to disagree. Many of the review sites that test phones from all makers have given the S7 an incredible 4.5 out of 5 stars.
The Galaxy S7 has an ultra HD screen resolution, a 12-megapixel camera (fewer megapixels than the S6, but takes better photos), water and dust-resistant, and a microSD storage slot (200GB microSD card available for purchase).
It also has an optional preview mode that allows you to delete or share photos right after taking them, as well as, optimal image stabilization to prevent blurry photos. Aside from the rave reviews, all the major telecom providers are promoting the phone with huge incentives. Apple has a tough act to follow after this.
Hack to the Future: Car Hacking
This month the FBI, Dept. of Transportation, and the National Highway Safety Administration all warned car manufacturers and drivers on the threat of car hacking. Car hacking sounds like a simple word, but the process is actually very technical. These days with keyless entry, remote start, navigation, and driver assist features, cars are becoming more and more computerized and automated. At the core of all these features are on-board computers that are constantly sending/receiving data to tell you where the closest Starbucks is, or how much gas you have left before your car stops. Car hackers exploit these connections and will send a signal using radio transmitters that you forgot your keys and need to get into your car, and drive off. Or tell your car that it has run out of gas and to shut the engine off in the middle of the highway, which was actually shown to investigators. Once your car’s security has been compromised, it’s as good as gone, especially in Europe as it seems to be becoming a trend for car thieves.
Some precaution can be taken to help protect your car by not plugging unknown devices into your car’s USB port, including thumb drives storing music. These could introduce malware software that could change or render your car’s computer system to a vulnerability. Also, use a mechanic you trust because the OBD-II diagnostic port, which is usually under the driver’s side dash, is a port that could allow for a remote hack if something malicious were plugged into it.
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