Wednesday Newsbytes – News for You – 051122
Every day we scan the tech world for news that affects all of us who use Windows computers. Every Wednesday, we feature some of the news articles that grabbed our attention over the past week. We hope you find this week’s “Wednesday Newsbytes” informative and interesting!
Experts catch hackers using Windows event logs to hide malware.
Cybersecurity experts recently discovered a new technique for storing malware on an unsuspecting PC. Used by hackers, it involves slipping malware inside of Windows 11 event logs. To make matters worse, this new technique is designed to make the infection process nearly impossible to detect until it’s too late.
Researchers at Kaspersky (thanks Bleeping Computer) analyzed a recent sample of the malware on a customer’s computer in February of this year. During their analysis, they found that a hacker was able to plant fileless malware into a victim’s file system by hiding it away in your Windows events logs. A first, according to Kaspersky.
This sophisticated attack injects shellcode payloads into Windows event logs into the KMS (Key Management Services) via a custom malware dropper and basically hides in plain sight.
The dropper then loads malicious code by taking advantage of a DLL exploit and hides itself as a copy of a legitimate error file. So, even if you check your event logs, it’ll look like nothing out of the ordinary. The attacker can then install a Trojan virus (or, in this case, a number of Trojans), which will wreak havoc on a system.
Denis Legezo, lead security researcher at Kaspersky, told Bleeping Computer that “the actor behind the campaign is rather skilled by itself, or at least has a good set of quite profound commercial tools.” The purpose of the attack is to obtain valuable user data.
It’s a tough crowd
It’s been rumored that Microsoft has been developing One Outlook for some time, but a fresh leak suggests we’re closer than ever to finally getting our hands on the all-in-one email client.
The leak was spotted by Temmie on Telegram and then posted to Twitter by @TomWarren , and looks visually very similar to the current Outlook Web service, with the exception of embedded window controls.
For those unaware, One Outlook (previously codenamed ‘Project Monarch’) will see Windows 11 applications like Outlook, Calendar and Contacts consolidated into a single app that works across PC, Mac and the web in order to replace its existing Outlook clients for desktop including Outlook Web, Outlook (Win32) for Windows, Outlook for Mac and Mail and Calendar on Windows 10.
This isn’t actually the first time that One Outlook has leaked. A version of the app appeared last year, but wasn’t accessible to anyone who worked outside of Microsoft, so this is the first version we’ve seen that works on work and education accounts.
The new app doesn’t appear to be working on personal Outlook accounts yet sadly, though those with access to an education or work account can give the beta version of One Outlook a whirl…
CHICAGO (WLS) — Over 43 million Americans have personally experienced “doxxing.”
Yet, many people don’t know what Doxxing is. In short, it’s when an internet troll or a scammer obtains your social media posts, messages, documents or pictures to embarrass or blackmail you. According to a new Safehome report, one in four of the “Doxxers” know their targets.
– Beware of what you’re posting, even if your settings are on private. Especially beware of making inappropriate comments or declaring strong political opinions.
– Practice good internet citizenship. Be careful of what you post. If you wouldn’t want your boss or family seeing it, maybe think twice before hitting send.
– Make sure you have a strong passwords on your cloud, social media sites and WiFi network.
– Use Virtual Private Networks to guard devices on public connections.
Billions of ads and millions of accounts removed from the network
Google removed billions of ads, and banned millions of advertiser accounts from its Google Ads network, all in a bid to protect its users from various malicious actors and fraudsters in 2021.
The news was contained in Google’s newly-published 2021 Ads Safety Report, stating user safety is “at the very top” of its list of priorities.
Overall, Google says it removed 3.4 billion ads, restricted more than 5.7 billion ads, and banned 5.6 million advertiser accounts.
New policies and systems
Of the 3.4 billion removed ads, 650 million were nixed for abusing the ad network, while 280 violated rules regarding adult content. 137 million were removed for trademark violations, while 125.6 million carried “inappropriate content”. Other reasons why ads were removed are related to misrepresentation, gambling, healthcare, copyrights, and alcohol.
Google also said it stopped inappropriate ads from being displayed on some 1.7 billion publisher pages, and 63,000 publisher sites.
All of this was made possible, Google says, due to new policies and systems being brought in place last year.
There are better places for your old tech than the landfill.
When you find yourself with a bunch of electronic junk you want out of your home, it can be hard to figure out how to properly dispose of it. Chucking it in the trash is not only harmful to the environment but it also might be against the law depending on what you need to dispose of. However, there are a dizzying number of options to safely and responsibly get rid of old tech. If your tech’s still in good working condition, you might even be able to get paid to part with it.
Prepare your old tech for recycling or donation
Before we can talk about where to dispose of old tech, we need to go over how to prep your tech for proper disposal. Tech can have sensitive data on it, such as your social security number or bank login information. To keep your data safe, either remove or wipe any storage drives in the device before disposing of it.
If you have a bad battery that you need to dispose of, you’ll want to take a few precautions for your safety and for the environment’s safety. The United States Environmental Protection Agency recommends you tape the conductive ends of batteries with non-conductive tape (electrical tape, for instance) and place disposable batteries in a plastic bin or container. This reduces the risk of a fire.
Thanks for reading this week’s Wednesday Newbytes. We hope you found these articles useful, informative, interesting, and helpful. Darcy & TC