Asokan is a U.K.-based senior correspondent for Information Security Media Group's global news desk. She previously worked with IDG and other publications, reporting on developments in technology, minority rights and education.
The British data watchdog says the U.K. Department for Education shouldn't have allowed a private company to use student records to check whether new users of gambling apps were underage. A departmental spokesperson said it will ensure such misuse of the database doesn't reoccur.
Ransomware-as-a-service group LockBit is threatening the release of data it says it stole from German auto parts maker Continental. The company in August acknowledged an incident involving its IT systems, but didn't respond Friday with additional information.
The United Kingdom's National Cyber Security Centre is scanning the British internet for vulnerabilities. "We're not trying to find vulnerabilities in the U.K. for some other, nefarious purpose," says the center, a part of signals intelligence agency Government Communications Headquarters.
Operational technology will gain more malicious attention from state-backed hackers, warns the European Union Agency for Cybersecurity. Geopolitics is driving changes in the threat landscape and the agency predicts retaliatory attacks for Western support of Kyiv.
Ransomware attacks pose the biggest cybersecurity threat to U.K. organizations, particularly hospitals and schools, the country’s National Cyber Security Centre warns. So far in 2022, 18 ransomware attacks have required nation-level coordinated efforts to mitigate the threats, it adds.
One of the world's largest copper smelters disclosed it underwent a cyberattack, stating that production "could largely be maintained." Germany-based Aurubis owns Europe's largest copper smelting facility, capable of refining 450,000 metric tonnes annually and located in Hamburg.
Parliament IT systems in two East European capitals were disrupted Thursday. The Poland Senate said a distributed denial-of-service attack partially originated from inside Russia. In Slovakia, a Parliament speaker postponed voting after telling lawmakers that vote-counting systems were not working.
The Department of Homeland Security released a set of cybersecurity practices for critical infrastructure containing basic measures such as requiring multifactor authentication and disabling AutoRun. The word "voluntary" was in heavy rotation during the Thursday rollout.
The problem of zero-day exploits used by advanced spyware makers such as NSO Group is an urgent problem requiring government intervention, a Google cybersecurity executive told the European Parliament committee investigating member nations' use of the Pegasus spy app.
Artificial intelligence-driven technology purporting to recognize human emotional states "may not work yet, or indeed ever," said U.K. Deputy Information Commissioner Stephen Bonner. The office predicts greater commercial use of behavioral analysis in products over the next two to three years.
An inquiry into European Union countries' use of Pegasus spyware is running into national opposition, said Jeroen Lenaers, head of the investigative committee. Pegasus can invoke national security sensitivities, Lenaers acknowledged, but said the inquiry is concentrated on questions of law.
The U.K. Information Commissioner levied a nearly $5 million fine against Interserve Group Limited for its lack of security protections in the run-up to a 2020 ransomware attack. The firm kept employee data on servers running obsolete versions of Windows and used outdated antivirus software.
Europe faces an annual investment gap of 1.75 billion euros in the cybersecurity industry compared to the United States, warn the European Commission and the European Investment Bank. They propose a new fund dubbed the European Cybersecurity Investment Platform to foster domestic industry growth.
Hacking capabilities once reserved for nation-states are filtering down to the level of crimeware, warns Kaspersky researcher Sergey Lozhkin. Darknet forums are filled with self-taught hackers selling advanced capabilities for a good price, he says.
A new round of Pegasus infections among journalists and a human rights activist is sending shock waves into Mexican politics as the attorney general's office says it is investigating the previous presidential administration's purchase of the smartphone spy app.