It’s been a pretty crazy week for white hats and IT professionals across the globe. In the past seven days we’ve seen everything from Interpol-led botnet takedowns, to reports that hackers may have made a home in HSBC’s systems during a strike on its mortgage customers.
Here to make sense of the storm of news announcements we’ve picked the biggest stories and lessons from the week.
Zombie botnets have resurrection powers
This week a task force comprising Interpol, Microsoft, Kaspersky Lab, Trend Micro and Japan’s Cyber Defence Institute reported successfully freeing 770,000 machines from the Simda botnet.
However, while the team members were enjoying a nice session of patting each other on the back, rumblings from the security community emerged calling the strike a PR stunt.
Specifically, the experts pointed out that the Simda botnet’s authors are still at large, and that it’s only a matter of time before the menace returns.
Chinese hackers can breach air-gapped systems
FireEye has caught Chinese hackers with their hands in the cyber cookie jar many times over the past few years.
The firm’s researchers added another notch this week with the uncovering of a sophisticated hacker group believed to be from China that has been mounting a coordinated ‘APT30’ campaign capable of infiltrating air gapped systems.
Dropbox wants to attract bug hunters
Bug bounties are increasingly common these days, and companies including Facebook, Microsoft and Google all offer cash for “responsibly disclosed” flaws in their services.
Hackers breached HSBC systems
Banks are a constant target for cyber criminals and are not immune to hackers’ efforts.
This was showcased this week when HSBC sent out messages warning that an undisclosed number of customers’ mortgage account information had been compromised.
Mobile malware isn’t an issue
Since smartphones became a commonplace item in most people’s pockets, security professionals have been warning us of an impending mobile cyber-Apocalypse.
However, Verizon moved to douse the doomsday fires this week, reporting that only a tiny 0.3 percent of mobile devices are infected with malware.