Antivirus, Enterprise, Internet Security, Social Media

What internet security threats to look out for in 2018?

Being aware of all the possible internet security threats you can be a victim of is a must if you…

Being aware of all the possible internet security threats you can be a victim of is a must if you want to stay safe while browsing the web and doing all your everyday online activities, such as using your social network accounts, performing web banking transactions and even checking your e-mail. 2017 was a year of technological progress and new developments in every single area, and this also included malicious activity.

If you want to enjoy a safe internet experience during 2018, then check out this list of security threats you need to be careful with.

Identity theft

One of the biggest and most dangerous threats is identity theft. Malicious individuals or groups are always looking to steal user accounts, banking information, e-mail addresses and passwords in order to perform or aid themselves in their illegal activities posing as someone else. Another reason identity theft is such a big deal is because it may grant hackers access to sensitive information they can use to target a business or bigger organization. Spot common phishing attacks with the help of our article – 5 ways to spot phishing attacks.

Social network attacks

Social networks have spread into every single aspect of our everyday life, and they have become a widely used platform for malware distribution and phishing attacks. During 2018, it is expected that hackers and phishers exploit social networks to reach more people with their attacks and threats. Be careful with every link and post you see or receive on these social platforms, even if they come from people you know. For more information on social media threats see our biggest threats to your social media account article.

Mobile malware

Mobile devices such as phones and tablets have taken the lead over more traditional, desktop computers and others. As more and more people acquire one or more of these devices, cyber criminals are trying to develop more sophisticated and complex malware applications specifically targeted at them, serving as a bridge for information theft and other malicious activities. Mobile operating system developers must enforce more and better security measures to reduce the number of successful attacks on these platforms.

Data Breaches

Digital systems are always vulnerable, and data breaches and leaks are a latent risk that can happen anytime, with catastrophic consequences such as e-mail, password, social security number and other sensitive and confidential information theft, just like it has happened in recent years to big companies and organizations. Be careful with the platforms and services you choose to use, and make sure you’re trusting good hands with your data, but be also ready to act in case a system breach happens.

Organized cyber crime

One final threat to be aware of during 2018 is organized cyber crime. Cyber criminals have stopped working by themselves or in small groups and have been found to assemble in “hacker groups” and distinct criminal organizations, posing a greater risk for institutions, services and the general public. This is also relevant for countries, given that these cyber criminal organizations also target official institutions and systems. One barrier against these attacks is making sure your devices are protected by a robust and powerful security suite.

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Enterprise

Bots try to break the internet, and other trends for 2019

From the largest DDoS attacks ever seen and record-breaking numbers of data breaches, to the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in May, 2018 will be remembered as an extraordinary year for the cybersecurity industry. With hackers developing increasingly sophisticated ways to attack enterprises every day, one of the most important lessons from this…


From the largest DDoS attacks ever seen and record-breaking numbers of data breaches, to the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in May, 2018 will be remembered as an extraordinary year for the cybersecurity industry. 

With hackers developing increasingly sophisticated ways to attack enterprises every day, one of the most important lessons from this year is how crucial it is to stay one step ahead of cybercriminals at all times. In order to continuously protect company and customer data, businesses need to have an understanding of not only cybersecurity threats now, but also in the far future.  

Although no one can say for certain what 2019 will bring, we can look to the past to understand the trends of tomorrow. As technology has evolved, it’s been accompanied by smarter, more malicious and much harder to detect threats. With the ever-increasing intelligence of bots, the increasing complexity of clouds and rising IoT risks, as well as the impact of data regulations, cybersecurity will dominate boardroom conversations. 

  • Keep your devices protected from the latest cyber threats with the best antivirus
  • Browse public Wi-Fi securely with the best VPN
  • This is everything you need to know about GDPR

With this in mind, here are eight trends that will make the year ahead as turbulent as the one just passed:

Cyber-attacks will grow – and go slow 

Organisations will see an increase in cyberattacks but these will be “low and slow”, rather than “noisy” incidents such as DDoS attacks. Launched by botnets, “low and slow” attacks aim to remain under the radar for as long as possible, to steal as much data as they can. 

Often these take the form of credential stuffing attacks, where stolen credentials are used to access associated accounts and steal further personal data such as addresses and payment details. 

To protect themselves, businesses will need to adopt bot management solutions, which identify, categorise and respond to different bot types. The technology uses behaviour-based bot detection and continuous threat analysis to distinguish people from bots. 

Image Credit: iStockPhoto

Image Credit: iStockPhoto

Bots will overtake human web traffic 

As bots become more sophisticated, they will be responsible for more than 50% of web traffic. Already, Akamai has found that43% of all login attemptscome from malicious botnets – and this is set to increase as credential stuffing and “low and slow” attacks grow in popularity. 

More sophi

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Internet Security

LG hints at gesture interface for smartphone flagship next month

LG has put out a gesture-heavy hint ahead of the annual unveiling of new smartphone hardware at the world’s biggest mobile confab, Mobile World Congress, which kicks off in a month’s time. The brief video teaser for its forthcoming MWC press event in Barcelona, which was shared today via LG’s social media channels, shows a…


LGhas put out a gesture-heavy hint ahead of the annual unveiling of new smartphone hardware at the world’s biggest mobile confab, Mobile World Congress, which kicks off in a month’s time.

The brief video teaser for its forthcoming MWC press event in Barcelona, which was shared today via LG’s social media channels, shows a man’s hand swiping to change on-screen content, including the message “goodbye touch.”

The title of LG’s teaser video includes the name “LG Premiere,” which could be the name of the forthcoming flagship — albeit that would be confusingly similar to the mid-tier LG Premier of yore. So, hopefully the company is going to make that last ‘e’ really count.

Beyond some very unsubtle magic wand sound effects to draw extra attention to the contactless gestures, the video offers very little to go on. But we’reprettysureLG is not about to pivot away from touchscreens entirely.

Rather, we’re betting on some sort

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Internet Security

The facts about Facebook

This is a critical reading of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s article in the WSJ on Thursday, also entitled The Facts About Facebook.  Yes Mark, you’re right; Facebook turns 15 next month. What a long time you’ve been in the social media business! We’re curious as to whether you’ve also been keeping count of how many times…


This is a criticalreading of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s article in the WSJ on Thursday, also entitled The Facts About Facebook. 

Yes Mark, you’re right; Facebookturns 15 next month. What a long time you’ve been in the social media business! We’re curious as to whether you’ve also been keeping count of how many times you’ve been forced to apologize for breaching people’s trust or, well, otherwise royally messing up over the years.

It’s also true you weren’t setting out to build “a global company”. The predecessor to Facebook was a ‘hot or not’ game called ‘FaceMash’ that you hacked together while drinking beer in your Harvard dormroom. Your late night brainwave was to get fellow students to rate each others’ attractiveness — and you weren’t at all put off by not being in possession of the necessary photo data to do this. You just took it; hacking into the college’s online facebooks and grabbing people’s selfies without permission.

Blogging about what you were doing as you did it, you wrote: “I almost want to put some of these faces next to pictures of some farm animals and have people vote on which is more attractive.” Just in case there was any doubt as to the ugly nature of your intention. 

The seeds of Facebook’s global business were thus sown in a crude and consentless game of clickbait whose idea titillated you so much you thought nothing of breaching security, privacy, copyright and decency norms just to grab a few eyeballs.

So while you may not haveinstantlyunderstood how potent this ‘outrageous and divisive’ eyeball-grabbing content tactic would turn out to be — oh hai future global scale! — the core DNA of Facebook’s business sits in that frat boy discovery where your eureka Internet moment was finding you could win the attention jackpot by pitting people against each other.

Pretty quickly you also realized you could exploit and commercialize human one-upmanship — gotta catch em all friend lists! popularity poke wars! — and stick a badge on the resulting activity, dubbing it ‘social’.

FaceMash was antisocial, though. And the unpleasant flipside that can clearly flow from ‘social’ platforms is something you continue not being nearly honest nor open enough about. Whether it’s political disinformation, hate speech or bullying, the individual and societal impacts of maliciously minded content shared and amplified using massively mainstream tools you control is now impossible to ignore.

Yet you prefer to play down these human impacts; as a “crazy idea”, or by implying that ‘a little’ amplified human nastiness is the necessary cost of being in the big multinational business of connecting everyone and ‘socializing’ everything.

But did you ask the father of 14-year-old Molly Russell, a British schoolgirl who took her own life in 2017, whether he’s okay with your growth vs controls trade-off? “I have no doubt that Instagram helped kill my daughter,” said Russell in an interview with the BBC this week.

After her death, Molly’s parents found she had been following accounts on Instagram that were sharing graphic material related to self-harming and suicide, including some accounts that actively encourage people to cut themselves. “We didn’t know that anything like that could possibly exist on a platform like Instagram,” said Russell.

Without a human editor in the mix, your algorithmic recommendations are blind to risk and suffering. Built for global scale, they get on with the expansionist goal of maximizing clicks and views by serving more of the same sticky stuff. And more extreme versions of things users show an interest in to keep the eyeballs engaged.

So when you write about making services that “billions” of “people around the world love and use” forgive us for thinking that sounds horribly glib. The scales of suffering don’t sum like that. If your entertainment product has whipped upgenocideanywhere in the world — as the UN said Facebook did in Myanmar — it’s failing regardless of the proportion of users who are having their time pleasantly wasted on and by Facebook.

And if your algorithms can’t incorporate basic checks and safeguards so they don’t accidentally encourage vulnerable teens to commit suicide you really don’t deserve to be in any consumer-facing business at all.

Yet your article shows no sign you’ve been reflecting on the kinds of human tragedies that don’t just play out on your platform but can be an emergent property of your targeting algorithms.

You focus instead on what you call “clear benefits to this business model”.

The benefits to Facebook’s business are certainly clear. You have the billions in quarterly revenue to stand that up. But what about the costs to the rest of us? Human costs are harder to quantify but you don’t even sound like you’re trying.

You do write that you’ve heard “many questions” about Facebook’s business model. Which is most certainly true but once again you’re playing down the level of political and societal concern about how your platform operates (and how you operate your platform) — deflecting and reframing what Facebook is to cast your ad business a form of quasi philanthropy; a comfortable discussion topic and self-serving idea you’d much prefer we were all sold on.

It’s also hard to shake the feeling that your phrasing at this point is intended as a bit of an in-joke for Facebook staffers — to smirk at the ‘dumb politicians’ who don’t even know how Facebook makes money.

Y’know, like you smirked…

Then you write that you want to explain how Facebook operates. But, thing is, you don’t explain — you distract, deflect, equivocate and mislead, which has been your business’ strategy through many months of scandal (that and worst tactics — such as paying a PR firm that used oppo research tactics to discredit Facebook critics with smears).

Dodging is another special power; such as how you dodged repeat requests from international parliamentarians to be held accountable for major data misuse and security breaches.

The Zuckerberg ‘open letter’ mansplain, which typically runs to thousands of blame-shifting words, is another standard issue production from the Facebook reputation crisis management toolbox.

And here you are again, ironically enough, mansplaining in a newspaper; an industry that your platform has worked keenly to gut and usurp, hungry to supplant editorially guided journalism with the moral vacuum of algorithmically geared space-filler which, left unchecked, has been shown, time and again, lifting divisive and damaging content into public view.

The latest Zuckerberg screed has nothing new to say. It’s pure spin. We’ve read scores of self-serving Facebook apologias over the years and can confirm Facebook’s founder has made a very tedious art of selling abject failure as some kind of heroic lack of perfection.

But the spin has been going on for far, far too long. Fifteen years, as you remind us. Yet given that hefty record it’s little wonder you’re moved to pen again — imagining that another word blast is all it’ll take for the silly politicians to fall in line.

Thing is, no one is asking Facebook for perfection, Mark. We’re looking for signs that you and your company have a moral compass. Because the opposite appears to be true. (Or as one UK parliamentarian put it to your CTO last year: “I remain to be convinced that your company has integrity”.)

Facebook has scaled to such an unprecedented, global size exactly because it has no editorial values. And you say again now you want to be all things to all men. Put another way that me

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Internet Security

The social layer is ironically key to Bitcoin’s security

A funny thing happened in the second half of 2018. At some moment, all the people active in crypto looked around and realized there weren’t very many of us. The friends we’d convinced during the last holiday season were no longer speaking to us. They had stopped checking their Coinbase accounts. The tide had gone…


A funny thing happened in the second half of 2018. At some moment, all the people active in crypto looked around and realized there weren’t very many of us. The friends we’d convinced during the last holiday season were no longer speaking to us. They had stopped checking their Coinbase accounts. The tide had gone out from the beach. Tokens and blockchains were supposed to change the world; how come nobody was using them?

In most cases, still, nobodyisusing them. In this respect, many crypto projects have succeeded admirably. Cryptocurrency’s appeal is understood by many as freedom from human fallibility. There is no central banker, playing politics with the money supply. There is no lawyer, overseeing the contract. Sometimes it feels like crypto developers adopted the defense mechanism of the skunk. It’s working: they are succeeding at keeping people away.

Some now acknowledge the need for human users, the so-called “social layer,” of Bitcoinand other crypto networks. That human component is still regarded as its weakest link. I’m writing to propose that crypto’s human component is its strongest link. For the builders of crypto networks, how to attract the right users is a question that should come before how to defend against attackers (aka, the wrong users). Contrary to what you might hear on Twitter, when evaluating a crypto network, the demographics and ideologies of its users do matter. They

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