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Weekly Cyber Security News

Huawei: How the UK’s decision affects the rest of the world

huaweiThe UK has decided to let Huawei continue to be used in its growing 5G networks – but with restrictions.

The long-awaited decision goes against advice and pressure from the US to block the firm for security reasons.

But some industry-watchers believe it will benefit the wider rollout of next-generation mobile data services.

“I think it’s a pragmatic decision that brings stability and continuity in the 5G ecosystem,” commented Stephane Teral from IHS Markit.

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United Nations Confirms ‘Serious’ Cyberattack With 42 Core Servers Compromised

serversOne week after the United Nations called for an investigation into the claims that Jeff Bezos’ smartphone was hacked by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, a claim that I first reported in March 2019, another investigation has revealed that the UN itself has been hacked.

The leak of an internal UN report to investigators at The New Humanitarian shows that core infrastructure servers were compromised during a successful cyberattack last year. The report, dated September 20, 2019, was from the United Nations Office of Information and Technology. Associated Press, which has also seen the report, said that 42 servers in all were compromised and a further 25 categorised as suspicious.

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Wawa’s massive card breach: 30 million customers’ details for sale online

The Wawa breach may rank as one of the biggest of all time, comparable to earlier Home Depot and Target breaches.

On Monday, hackers put up for sale the payment card details of more than 30 million Americans and over one million foreigners on Joker’s Stash, the internet’s largest carding fraud forum.

This new “card dump” was advertised under the name of BIGBADABOOM-III; however, according to experts at threat intelligence firm Gemini Advisory, the card data was traced back to Wawa, a US East Coast convenience store chain.

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Cyber-Attack on US Water Company Causes Network Outage

A South Carolina water company is recovering from a cyber-attack that took its phone and online payment systems offline for nearly a week.

The cyber-attack on Greenville Water triggered a payment system outage that began on Wednesday, January 22. Company spokesperson Emerald Clark said 500,000 customers were affected by the incident.

An investigation has been launched into the cyber-attack, the exact nature of which is yet to be revealed by Greenville Water. It’s not yet known who targeted the water company or from where the attack was launched.

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Why the Travelex Incident Portends the Changing Nature of Ransomware

Like most New Year’s resolutions, most go off the rails by February. The hackers behind the recent Travelex attack didn’t wait that long to sound the GDPR and privacy alarms, and bring into light, new implications around transparency and timely notifications of data breaches.

Plagued by a sophisticated ‘hands on keyboard’ ransomware attack, Travelex initially declared their global system outage as maintenance downtime via message on their website. One week later, they replaced the initial message with a press release announcing a cyberattack as of December 31st 2019 (and as of January 27th, the company’s services were still down.)

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UK cyber security sector worth more than £8bn

The UK’s cyber security industry employs 43,000 full-time workers, and contributed nearly £4bn to the UK economy in 2019, according to DCMS.

The UK’s cyber security industry is reaping the rewards of a three-year boom, with the number of active security firms in the UK growing by 44% to 1,200 since 2017, making total sales of £8.3bn, up 46%, and contributing £3.7bn to the economy, up 60%, according to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

DCMS’s UK cyber security sectoral analysis 2020 report also revealed that the security sector now employs 43,000 people, up 37%, and in 2019 alone attracted £348m of investment in early-stage companies. Industry investment has topped £1.1bn over the past four years.