Symantec Android Master Key Malware

Symantec spots first two apps that exploit biggest-ever Android security hole

By on July 24, 2013 at 4:15 PM.

Symantec spots first two apps that exploit biggest-ever Android security hole

Less than a month after researchers at Bluebox Security uncovered the biggest Android security hole to date, Symantec has spotted two malicious apps that are taking advantage of this major crack in Android’s foundation. Essentially, the vulnerability found by Bluebox theoretically allows hackers to change mobile applications’ codes without breaking the cryptographic signature that’s needed to verify an app’s legitimacy. In other words, the vulnerability could give hackers free rein to transform any app into malware. To make matters worse, Bluebox says that this problem has existed since at least Android 1.6, which means that the vast majority of Android devices are vulnerable to malware-producing hackers. More →

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Botnet Black Market

Buying your own botnet costs as little as $250

By on December 19, 2012 at 11:40 AM.

Buying your own botnet costs as little as $250

Botnets used to be the exclusive domain of high-powered hackers looking to rake in cash from spam operations or to conduct highly effective DDoS attacks. But now Symantec has found that botnets are increasingly becoming available to less sophisticated hacker wannabes and are being sold for as little as $250. More →

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New malware sends your friends death threats through your email account

By on October 12, 2012 at 12:00 PM.

New malware sends your friends death threats through your email account

Death Threat Malware

If your sweet old grandmother sends you an email threatening to slit your throat, don’t worry: It’s just the malware talking. NBC’s TechNewsDaily reports that there’s a new strain of malware going around in Japan that takes control of users’ email accounts and uses them to send out death threats to a variety of targets. In fact, the malware is apparently so convincing that three people in Japan so far have been arrested because their email accounts have sent out death threats they didn’t write. More →

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Bizarre Android malware disrupts bizarre Japanese girl-band election

By on June 8, 2012 at 1:15 PM.

Bizarre Android malware disrupts bizarre Japanese girl-band election

Android malware attacks AKB48 fans

Symantec recently discovered what it’s calling “bizarre malware” that has been created to infect Android phones of fans who are voting in Japan’s premier annual girl-band election. Wait, what? Here’s the lowdown: there is a super-popular girl band in Japan called AKB48 that is made up of a rotating lineup of 64 — yes, 64 — different members. Every year, fans of the group vote for their favorite band members in a “general election.”  The winners of the election then go on to record a single together that will be released in celebration of girl-band democracy. More →

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Religious websites contain more malware than porn sites

By on May 3, 2012 at 12:40 PM.

Religious websites contain more malware than porn sites

Religious websites contain more malware than porn

People who browse religious websites are more likely to have their computers infected with a virus than those who visit pornographic websites, according to Symantec’s annual “Internet Security Threat Report.” The firm found that websites with religious or ideological themes had triple the average number of threats than those featuring adult content. “It is interesting to note that websites hosting adult/pornographic content are not in the top five, but ranked tenth,” Symantec said. “We hypothesize that this is because pornographic website owners already make money from the Internet and, as a result, have a vested interest in keeping their sites malware-free; it’s not good for repeat business.” The report was based on information gathered from more than 200 countries through the Symantec Global Intelligence Network. Symantec blocked a total of 5.5 billion attacks last year, an 81% increase from 2010. More →

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Flashback OS X malware estimated to generate creators $10,000 per day

By on May 1, 2012 at 4:40 PM.

Flashback OS X malware estimated to generate creators $10,000 per day

Flashback OS X virus generates $10K per day

The “Flashback” virus that originated on a series of WordPress blogs and went on to infected more than 600,000 Mac computers last month may have generated its creators thousands of dollars each day. According to antivirus software firm Symantec, the Flashback malware has been generating revenue for its authors by hijacking users’ ad clicks, and due to the widespread nature of the infection, the authors could have been generating up to $10,000 per day. “Flashback specifically targets search queries made on Google and, depending on the search query, may redirect users to another page of the attacker’s choosing, where they receive revenue from the click,” the firm explained, adding that Google never receives the intended ad click. Symantec notes that ad-clicking Trojans are nothing new and a botnet of 25,000 infections could generate an author up to $450 per day. More →

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140,000 Mac computers still infected by ‘Flashback’ trojan, firm says

By on April 18, 2012 at 8:45 AM.

140,000 Mac computers still infected by ‘Flashback’ trojan, firm says

Apple responded fairly quickly to news that more than 600,000 Mac computers were infected with a trojan virus called “Flashback.” One week after the massive botnet was discovered, Apple issued an update fixing the Java vulnerability that allowed Flashback to infect the machines, as well as a removal tool for affected machines. Despite the company’s efforts, Symantec stated on Tuesday evening that approximately 140,000 OS X PCs were still infected with the virus at that time. “The statistics from our sinkhole are showing declining numbers on a daily basis,” the company wrote on its blog. “However, we had originally believed that we would have seen a greater decline in infections at this point in time, but this has proven not to be the case. Currently, it appears that the number of infected computers has tapered off, but remains around the 140,000 mark.” Symantec offers its own Flashback removal tool separate from the one Apple made available in a system update on April 12th. More →

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‘Anonymous’ hackers leak Norton AntiVirus source code

By on March 9, 2012 at 12:15 PM.

‘Anonymous’ hackers leak Norton AntiVirus source code

Hackers associated with the group “Anonymous” have published Symantec’s Norton AntiVirus source code on The Pirate Bay. The source code was stolen in 2006 and after alleged attempts to extort money from Symantec failed, the hactivist group released it late Thursday evening. The file is 1.07GB in size and includes the source code to a number of products within the software suite, such as the consumer version, the corporate edition, and other files for Windows, Unix and NetWare, according to a report from ZDNet. In addition to the source code, the torrent includes a note calling for the release of the LulzSec hackers who were arrested on Tuesday — with the exception of Sabu, the group’s leader who reportedly worked with the FBI to build cases against other members of the group. Symantec has previously said that the breach will “not affect any current Norton product,” claiming the “current version of Norton Utilities has been completely rebuilt and shares no common code with Norton Utilities 2006. The code that has been posted for the 2006 version poses no security threat to users of the current version of Norton Utilities.” More →

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Hackers tried to extort $50,000 from Symantec after stealing source code

By on February 7, 2012 at 11:15 AM.

Hackers tried to extort $50,000 from Symantec after stealing source code

A group of hackers demanded that Symantec pay $50,000 to prevent it from releasing stolen source code for several of the firm’s software titles. Symantec reportedly confirmed that it was cooperating with a sting operation while communicating via email with a group of hackers claiming ties to notorious hacktivist group “Anonymous.” Those ties have not been confirmed. The email conversation was posted to Pastebin on Monday, and a Symantec representative confirmed to CNET that the emails were authentic. Read on for more. More →

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Huawei to acquire Symantec’s 49% stake in Huawei Symantec for $530 million

By on November 15, 2011 at 1:00 AM.

Huawei to acquire Symantec’s 49% stake in Huawei Symantec for $530 million

Huawei announced on Monday its intentions to purchase Symantec’s 49% stake in Huawei Symantec, a joint venture between the two companies that was originally formed in 2008, giving Huawei full control of the company. “The integration of Huawei Symantec’s innovative security and storage technology with Huawei’s enterprise products will reinforce Huawei’s leading position in cloud computing,” said Guo Ping, deputy chairman of Huawei.” The $530 million purchase is still pending regulatory approval, but Huawei expects the deal to close during the first quarter of 2012. Read on for the full press release.

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