Anglo African weekly news wrap on trending cyber-attacks, to keep you alert.

February 1, 2018

Malware samples started being detected on VirusTotal as soon as the researchers involved in the discover of the Meltdown and Spectre flaws began releasing PoC code for the two vulnerabilities. According to a report from Fortinet, most of these samples include the PoC code or variations of it. All evidence suggests most of these detections are security researchers playing with the PoC code, but experts won’t rule out that some samples are from malware authors looking for ways to weaponize the PoC code for malicious actions.

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The US Department of Justice has launched another high-profile attempt to uncover drug-dealers hiding their tracks on the dark web. Backed by attorney-general, Jeff Sessions, the new Joint Criminal Opioid Darknet Enforcement (J-CODE) team will focus specifically on illegal opioid sales.

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Data breaches reached a new high of 1,579 and exposed almost 179 million records in 2017 according to a report last week by the Identity Theft Resource Center and CyberScout. The number of annual breaches increased 45 percent over the previous record in 2016.

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There is no escaping the current cryptocurrency frenzy, with numerous initial coin offers (ICOs) and wild value fluctuations becoming commonplace. Advertisements touting ‘crypto-geniuses’ and questionable ICOs have no doubt been making an appearance on various online platforms, but Facebook has now decided to enforce a blanket ban on ads referring to cryptocurrencies.

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The problem of cryptocurrency-mining malware embedded in online ads reared its ugly head in a big way last week, as several malicious ads popped up on YouTube. This happened due to a rogue actor injecting corrupted content into Google’s own DoubleClick ad network.

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