Hospital Forced Back to Pre-Computer Era Shows the Power of Ransomware.

Malicious software that uses encryption to hold data for ransom has become wildly successful over the last few years. Ransomware, as it is known, now looks to have scored its highest-profile victim yet.

Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles was infected by ransomware more than a week ago. The software locked up files throughout the hospital’s IT system and, according to unconfirmed reports, demanded 9,000 bitcoins, more than $3 million, for their return.

Iran said to hack former Israeli army chief-of-staff, access his entire computer.

cyber-hacker working for Iran hacked the computer of a former IDF chief-of-staff, an Israeli television report said Tuesday, and gained access to the unnamed army chief’s entire computer database.

The hacker was named by Channel 10 as Yaser Balaghi. He was said to have subsequently bragged about the hack, but he also inadvertently left behind a means to trace his identity. That error prompted Iran to halt the hacking operation, which targeted 1,800 people worldwide, including Israeli army generals, human rights activists in the Persian Gulf and scientists.

How PayPal Boosts Security with Artificial Intelligence.

To PayPal, the transactions signal fraud: a U.S. user’s account is accessed in the U.K., China, and elsewhere around the world. But PayPal’s security system—thanks to a growing reliance on an artificial-­intelligence technology known as deep learning—is now able to spot possible fraud without making mistakes. That’s because algorithms mine data from the customer’s purchasing history—in addition to reviewing patterns of likely fraud stored in its databases—and can tell whether, for example, the suspect transactions were innocent actions of a globe-hopping pilot.

Database of 191 million U.S. voters discovered on the Internet.

An independent computer security researcher uncovered a database of information on 191 million voters that is exposed on the open Internet due to an incorrectly configured database, he said on Monday.

The database includes names, addresses, birth dates, party affiliations, phone numbers and emails of voters in all 50 U.S. states and Washington, researcher Chris Vickery said in a phone interview.

Vickery, a tech support specialist from Austin, Texas, said he found the information while looking for information exposed on the Web in a bid to raise awareness of data leaks.

Vickery said he could not tell whether others had accessed the voter database, which took about a day to download.

Pebble-like device goes up against Internet of Things hackers.

More connected devices are connecting with more databases and sharing more information than ever – and we’re just at the beginning of the data-gathering revolution that the Internet of Things will bring us. Unfortunately, according to security experts, Kaspersky Lab, that provides hackers with more opportunities to steal more data, especially from IoT devices that are essentially unprotected.

“The bond of trust between users and their devices can lead them to forget about security,” said Victor Yablokov, head of mobile product line at Kaspersky Lab.

Israeli cyber-security firm gets GE award for Internet technology.

General Electric is getting into the cloud business – and it’s taking Israeli cyber-security firm ThetaRay along with it.

After investing along with several partners $10 million in ThetaRay last year, GE presented the company at its recent Minds and Machines Conference in San Francisco with its Industrial Innovation Award for offering the “Most Innovative Industrial Internet Technology.”

The ThetaRay technology, said GE, will be used in its big data platform for industrial and business cloud development, called Predix.

Code42 raises $85M to prevent company data from being held hostage.

Last November, Sony Pictures was the subject of a massive hack that brought its operations to an abrupt standstill. Subsequently, (after much back and forth with the attackers) a swath of its internal data, emails, and personal information was leaked all over the Internet.

Though the leak itself was highly damaging for Sony, so was the hijacking of its network. Sony didn’t have a backup of its data, and that failure allowed hackers to hold the company hostage.

Why the security industry needs to learn to play together.

Earlier this year, President Obama held a Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection where he challenged public and private sector leaders to work together to protect American consumers and companies from the growing threat of cyberattacks. This outreach comes as several other key pieces are falling into place. Just this summer, the Congress is moving on new legislation to provide liability protection to private and public entities sharing cyber threat intelligence.

Investors Put $4.6 Billion Into Cybersecurity Startups In The Last Two Years.

Cybersecurity is increasingly a hot sector for investment, especially as more valuable information goes digital, and corporations continue to suffer high-profile data breaches. We used CB Insights data to take a look at the overarching financing trends in cybersecurity, as well as top investors and companies.


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