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Network Security News Weekly

Articles of interest from the week of May 14, 2018

Intel Preps Fixes for Eight New Spectre/Meltdown-Like CPU Flaws
There are eight new flaws, four of which are high risk and one of which poses a much greater danger than any of the three Spectre/Meltdown flaws that have already come to light. Intel, AMD and ARM say they first learned of the flaws in June 2017, thanks to a Google research team. The flaws are present in billions of devices made over the past 20 years. (By: , Bank Info Security)

Zero-Day Attack Exploits Windows via Malicious Word Doc
A bevy of newly revealed vulnerabilities in code from Microsoft and Adobe will require immediate fixing. Microsoft's May security bulletin includes fixes for 67 unique flaws in its software, of which 21 are rated critical, which often means they can be remotely exploited by attackers to execute arbitrary code on a vulnerable system. Of the rest of the flaws, 42 are rated as important while four are of low severity. (By: , Bank Info Security)

Secrets of the Wiper: Inside the World’s Most Destructive Malware
Shamoon, Black Energy, Destover, ExPetr/Not Petya and Olympic Destroyer: All of these wiper malwares, and others like them, have a singular purpose of destroying systems and/or data, usually causing great financial and reputational damage to victim companies. However, the threat actors behind this kind of code, whether they’re bent on sending a political message or simply wanting to cover their tracks after data exfiltration, have adopted various techniques to carry out those activities. (By: , Threat Post)

How VPN Help Organizations to Strengthen Cybersecurity
With a higher reliance on technology comes greater difficulty in keeping business information safe. There are millions of identity theft cases reported to businesses annually. According to the identity theft resource center, “Utilizing VPN's can drastically reduce those numbers, and I believe more and more people will understand that in the years to come.” It significantly reduces the risk of security breaches and cyber attacks as well. (By: , Security Today)

Placing more IT infrastructure in the cloud is in some ways more secure than having it in house. For instance, you can be reasonably sure that the system is running the latest version with the proper patches in place. Cloud service providers are also building in new capabilities such as using machine language for anomaly detection. However, it also presents new risks, some of which is the result of misunderstanding how to manage cloud security. (By: , IT News)

Opponents questioned both aspects: Some argued whether legitimizing offensive attacks would open the door to a new kind of corporate warfare; others were concerned that the law would have a chilling effect on cyber-research by criminalizing white-hat activity, like vulnerability research and pen-testing. (By: , Threat Post)

Properly Framing the Cost of a Data Breach
All breaches incur a minimum cost related to identification and remediation, essentially a minimum cost of entry. This entry point is followed by a flattening curve until the size of the breach hits its first inflection point – organizational awareness. In addition, there are two thresholds that may cause a second and even a third inflection point. These thresholds relate to general public awareness and press coverage. (By: , Dark Reading)

Don't Be Blinded By APTs
Understandably, many businesses invest abundant resources into fighting APTs. But is this approach blinding them to the less-sophisticated but more prevalent threats facing their networks? (By: , Security Ledger)

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