Health care breach could damage child’s credit

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With the lat­est health care data breach­es, your kids may be more vul­ner­a­ble to iden­ti­ty theft than ever. Most chil­dren don’t have cred­it cards and oth­er finan­cial data to steal. But they do use the health care sys­tem, mean­ing their Social Secu­ri­ty num­bers could be vul­ner­a­ble dur­ing a breach. One in 40 fam­i­lies with chil­dren under age 18 had at least one child whose per­son­al infor­ma­tion was com­pro­mised, accord­ing to a 2012 study by Javelin Strat­e­gy and Research. Michael Bruem­mer, vice pres­i­dent of the data breach res­o­lu­tion group at Exper­ian cred­it report­ing bureau, expects that num­ber to increase as health insur­er breach­es con­tin­ue. With 25 to 35 per­cent of health insur­ers’ pop­u­la­tions under age 18, thieves know that fraud­u­lent activ­i­ty using children’s Social Secu­ri­ty and health insur­ance num­bers may not be detect­ed for years. “Some­times, par­ents don’t real­ize there’s a prob­lem until a child is apply­ing for col­lege loans or a first cred­it card,” Bruem­mer says. “By then, they may have years of fraud­u­lent cred­it prob­lems to clean up.” Source: Bank Rate

Kind of a big ‘oops’

sh_geek squad_280A Flori­da woman claims a com­put­er repair turned into an iden­ti­ty theft night­mare. Sura Alani need­ed her lap­top fixed and turned to the Geek Squad at a local Best Buy. Ten weeks after she picked up her com­put­er, a stranger called who knew her name, cell­phone num­ber and more. He had gone to the same Best Buy and bought a flash dri­ve that had been dis­count­ed as an open-box item. Alani said the dri­ve had “all my pho­tos, all my doc­u­ments, and every­thing that had been on my lap­top,” includ­ing a copy of her pass­port, Social Secu­ri­ty num­ber and bank accounts. Alani found out a tech had backed up her data onto that dri­ve dur­ing the repair. But the flash dri­ve was not erased; then it was sold. Alani was lucky the stranger agreed to sell her the dri­ve at cost. Best Buy said it’s not clear what hap­pened, but it’s deter­mined to make sure cus­tomers’ pri­va­cy is always pro­tect­ed, and it offered to pay for Alani’s ID theft pro­tec­tion. Source: WFTV, Orlan­do, Fla.

Cyber saber rattling

The Islam­ic State of Iraq and the Lev­ant threat­ened to car­ry out a cyber attack against the U.K., accord­ing to SITE Intel Group, which mon­i­tors jihadist social media. The group made its threat in a video post­ed on the Inter­net that opens with images of mil­i­tants pick­ing up long knives as they forced a group of West­ern hostages to march for­ward and kneel in the dirt. The video goes on to make the cyber-attack threat. The devel­op­ment came weeks after the U.K. car­ried out a drone attack in Syr­ia to kill an Islam­ic State fight­er of British nation­al­i­ty sus­pect­ed of plan­ning attacks on the U.K. Prime Min­is­ter David Cameron told Par­lia­ment he hadn’t sought law­mak­ers’ approval as the strike was ordered in self-defense. “We take cyber threat very seri­ous­ly,” the U.K. gov­ern­ment said. “We have tak­en action to defend our net­works against increas­ing­ly sophis­ti­cat­ed attacks and ensure that we have the nec­es­sary capa­bil­i­ties to defend our nation­al inter­ests in cyber space.” Source: The Nation­al Post

Jittery iPhone owners can take steps

sh_apps_280If you own an iPhone and are wor­ried you might have apps that have been affect­ed by the App Store hack, there are some steps you can take to safe­guard data. “The No. 1 thing for iPhone users to do is make sure their apps are up to date,” said Ryan Olson, direc­tor of Palo Alto Net­works’ threat intel­li­gence research team. The large num­ber of devel­op­ers who worked on apps that were affect­ed by the mali­cious code are going to be issu­ing updates, Olson said, so “the soon­er you can get those installed, the bet­ter.” Be care­ful about enter­ing infor­ma­tion into dia­logue box­es, because the hack can push fake alerts that ask for sen­si­tive user data such as pass­words. And if you sus­pect you have a prob­lem, change your Apple account pass­word. Source: Tech Insid­er

Coming to the forefront

Prompt­ed by the OPM hack, the fed­er­al gov­ern­ment is rethink­ing cyber­se­cu­ri­ty and how to apply it to dig­i­tal oper­a­tions. But IT chiefs, work­ing to secure scores of agen­cies and depart­ments with near lim­it­less data, are faced with an abun­dance of chal­lenges and oppor­tu­ni­ty. The OPM hack has “ele­vat­ed cyber­se­cu­ri­ty to the fore­front of the con­ver­sa­tion right now,” said Car­los Segar­ra, chief infor­ma­tion secu­ri­ty offi­cer for the Depart­ment of Hous­ing and Urban Devel­op­ment. “To me, secu­ri­ty in the gov­ern­ment is noth­ing more than what qual­i­ty was in man­u­fac­tur­ing,” said Jim Quinn, Home­land Secu­ri­ty lead sys­tem engi­neer for the Con­tin­u­ous Diag­nos­tics and Mit­i­ga­tion pro­gram. “It is a nec­es­sary thing that you have to do in order to be suc­cess­ful in busi­ness.” Source: Fed­er­al Times

Plan of attack for an attack

sh_shield_280U.K. com­pa­nies are being urged to pro­tect them­selves by fol­low­ing the government’s Cyber Essen­tials plan. Recent fig­ures show that 74 per­cent of small busi­ness­es and 90 per­cent of large ones have had a cyber breach of some sort in the past year. “Good cyber­se­cu­ri­ty under­pins the entire dig­i­tal economy—we need it to keep our busi­ness­es, cit­i­zens and pub­lic ser­vices safe,” says Ed Vaizey, min­is­ter for the dig­i­tal econ­o­my. “We want to make the U.K. the safest place in the world to do busi­ness online and Cyber Essen­tials is a great and sim­ple way firms can pro­tect them­selves.” More than 1,000 busi­ness­es have adopt­ed Cyber Essen­tials, a pro­gram to help shield busi­ness­es from the most com­mon threats on the Inter­net. Source: Beta News

Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should

Even though tech­no­log­i­cal advance­ments had made it eas­i­er to vio­late end-user pri­va­cy, ven­dors must con­tin­ue to pro­tect their cus­tomers from unwant­ed intru­sions, says Michelle Dennedy, Cisco’s new vice pres­i­dent and chief pri­va­cy offi­cer. Pri­va­cy engi­neer­ing is tak­ing a new def­i­n­i­tion of pri­va­cy that does not mean secre­cy or shame or hid­ing away,” Dennedy says. “It means the autho­rized pro­cess­ing of per­son­al­ly iden­ti­fi­able infor­ma­tion accord­ing to fair prin­ci­ples.” Since data is an asset, peo­ple should be able to decide on their own what infor­ma­tion they wish to share about them­selves, and with whom, Dennedy said at the Busi­ness Inno­va­tion Fac­to­ry 2015 Sum­mit. Source: CRN

Print it, safely, with new software

sh_HP_280New soft­ware devel­oped with the back­ing of the Depart­ment of Defense and Depart­ment of Home­land Secu­ri­ty will help secure mil­lions of new Hewlett-Packard print­ers, and soon could help pro­tect the embed­ded com­put­ers found in every­thing from crit­i­cal infra­struc­ture to the human body. Tar­gets for hack­ers are everywhere—office print­ers, tele­phones, machines con­trol­ling pow­er plants, routers, auto elec­tron­ics, med­ical equip­ment. Many of these embed­ded devices can link with oth­er com­put­ers, so not only are they tar­gets, they also could serve as back doors into oth­er com­put­ers and net­works. HP announced that three new HP Laser­Jet Enter­prise print­ers com­ing out this fall would come equipped with soft­ware that can detect, report and defend against attacks tar­get­ing the devices. The com­pa­ny says it will deliv­er a firmware update enabling these capa­bil­i­ties on all Future Smart-enabled HP Laser­Jet Enter­prise print­ers already oper­at­ing in the field. Source: Pop­u­lar Science

Hey, you’re my EX-husband, remember?

A woman says her cell phone was used against her to track her every move. The woman, who asked not to be iden­ti­fied, says her ex-hus­band used her cell phone to stalk her. “He had every text, every pic­ture. He knew exact­ly where I was all the time,” said the alleged vic­tim. Brett Dear­man, a dig­i­tal foren­sics spe­cial­ist who inves­ti­gat­ed, believes the man was able to attach a small spy­ware appli­ca­tion via email or text that she opened. Iden­ti­ty thieves look­ing for pass­words or oth­er per­son­al infor­ma­tion could hit the jack­pot through such meth­ods. “It cap­tures text mes­sages, emails, phone con­ver­sa­tions. Any­thing you do on your phone, it can cap­ture it and send it upstream,” Dear­man of McCann Inves­ti­ga­tions said. Signs your phone is being tracked include being hot to the touch, los­ing bat­tery pow­er quick­ly and increased data usage. Source: KTRK, Hous­ton

CIA digital spy unit to spread far and wide

sh_CIA_200On Oct. 1, the Cen­tral Intel­li­gence Agency will add a direc­torate that will focus on all things cyber and dig­i­tal espi­onage. CIA Deputy Direc­tor David Cohen said that once the new Direc­torate of Dig­i­tal Inno­va­tion is up and run­ning, “it will be at the cen­ter of the agency’s effort to inject dig­i­tal solu­tions into every aspect of our work. It will be respon­si­ble for accel­er­at­ing the inte­gra­tion of our dig­i­tal and cyber capa­bil­i­ties across all our mis­sion areas—human intel­li­gence col­lec­tion, all-source analy­sis, open source intel­li­gence, and covert action.” Source: Net­work World