“Beware of the Facebook Notification Virus”

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“Beware of the Facebook Notification Virus”

Dear Blast Readers,

 

You are on your Facebook account, answering messages, liking posts, watching videos, and commenting on your friend’s photos. Suddenly, you receive a message from your friend Sam. The message contains a link to a funny cat video in which a cat in a hat is dancing with a maraca in its mouth. The message below the video says “Hilarious video. You NEED to check it out!”. Without giving it a second thought you click on the link to view the video. But, instead of viewing the video you get redirected to a site that you don’t recognize or trust. Naturally, you exit out of the browser thinking that maybe Sam has attached the wrong URL. But, it is too late. Your device has already been infected.

 

Security experts have identified a form of adware that targets social media users tricking them into infecting their own devices. It is known as the “Facebook Notification Virus”. This virus displays messages saying that they are from Facebook. The “Facebook Notification Virus” creates many different forms of messages, including:

  • Friend Requests
  • Chat Messages

 

Some of the notifications that the user received are real copies of notifications that users would see on the real social media site (making the fake notifications seem legit). While other notifications are presenting new features. The purpose of this adware is to redirect users to specific websites, most likely malicious websites, so that the user’s device becomes infected with malicious software. This virus does not just lead users to malicious websites, it also:

  • Monitors User Activity
  • Collects User Information
  • Records Browsing History
  • Tracks Cookies
  • Tracks Keystrokes
  • Tracks IP Addresses
  • Tracks Geographic Location
  • Tracks Zip Codes
  • Tracks Demographic Profiles
  • Tracks Emails
  • Tracks Telephone Numbers
  • Tracks Usernames
  • Tracks Passwords

 

After all this information is collected, the collector, hacker, will then attempt to sell your confidential information on Darknet Markets, then falling into the hands of much more malicious cyber criminals.

 

So, how does this virus spread?

 

The “Facebook Notification Virus” can be spread a few different ways, including:

  • Freeware
  • Shareware
  • Pirated copies of paid utilities.

 

Another way that it can spread is through spam emails. The sender of the spam emails wants you to open the so that his or her tool can get inside your system and infect it.

 

To protect your data and system from the “Facebook Notification Virus”, if you receive any suspicious messages from “Facebook”, you should:

  • Check your system, because you may have been infected.
  • Be careful of the software that you allow in your machine.
  • Verify the email addresses of the “companies” that have messaged you (visit the contact page on the official website of the “company” to verify the email address).

 

If you have any questions relating to the “Facebook Notification Virus”, cyber security, or computer forensics contact FDS Global. You can reach us at our office at (954)727-1957 or by email at RMoody@FDS.Global. Please feel free to visit our website at www.FDS.Global.


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“Is Your Phone Watching You While You Sleep?”

Dear Blast Readers,

 

Have you ever had the hair on the back of your neck stand up because you thought you were being watched? Have you ever wondered if you were being spied on? Imagine your every move being watched and listened to without your knowledge. Have you ever considered that maybe, your smartphone is watching and listening to everything that you say and/or do?

Usually, when someone thinks about a “Smartphone” you think about all the different things that you can do on the phone. The different applications that you can run. Applications like:

·        Gaming Apps

·        Messaging Apps

·        Shopping Apps

·        Social Media

·        Internet Browsers

 

Digital Forensic Analysts are worried about malware that can remotely take over features of a smartphone. With this ability, Hackers can take over, and use your phone’s camera and microphone. This lets them gain the ability to listen in to your conversations and watch you through your camera.

More times than not, these issues arise as the result of old software in need of an update. Therefore, older models of technology become out-of-date so quickly.

Security researchers have found another example on how hackers can spy on smartphone users. It might seem like a complicated process to accomplish the task of taking over a smartphone’s Camera and Microphone. This form of exploit works the same as any other form of malware. Firstly, you will be sent a message to download an app that seems real, or you could be re-directed to a secondary website. If you proceed with the download these programs attempt to gain control of the smartphone functions through security holes in the phone. Once the App is installed the hacker can collect surveillance information.

FDS’ Tips on preventing hackers from spying on your smartphone:

1.      Do not click on links sent from unknown numbers

2.      Do not click on pop-up windows with links

3.      Do not install Apps onto your phone if you are not sure who has manufactured them.

 

If you have any questions relating to our tips or computer forensics and cyber security contact FDS Global. You can reach us at our office at (954) 727-1957 or by email at RMoody@FDS.Global. Please feel free to visit our website at www.FDS.Global.


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“Data Protection Survey”

Dear Blast Readers,

Something most of us believe is important is Data Protection. With consistent news attention on “Hackings”, this idea of protecting your data has been dredged to the forefront of our minds. Data protection has different meanings for different people. It is often driven by your own education, experience, and industry.

I have put together a survey to better understand how an individual’s education, experience, and industry effect his or her perception of Data Protection. This survey will be used for educational and informational purposes at Oxford University in England.

The survey consists of thirteen questions. The questions are multiple choice and short answer. I appreciate all responses that I can include in presenting to an international community at Oxford. Please take the survey!  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NPDHR2V

If you have any questions relating to computer forensics or cyber security contact FDS Global. You can reach us at our office at (954) 727-1957 or by email at RMoody@FDS.Global. Please feel free to visit our website at www.FDS.Global.

 

 

 

 

 


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“It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! NO IT’S SANTA’S SLEIGH!!!”

Dear Blast Readers,

 With this week’s blast, I wanted to wish everyone a Happy Holidays, since this weekend is the start of Christmas and of Hanukah. In an amusing spin, I want to address something very concerning in a fun way.

 Breaking NEWS!!!! Santa’s Sleigh is now HACKABLE!??!!

 Like other aircrafts in the sky, Santa’s Sleigh has state-of-the-art inflight entertainment. This entertainment system gives Santa access to all of the new movies and TV shows, but unlike the rest of us, he gets it for free. The only problem with this inflight entertainment system is that it is vulnerable to hackers.

 Hackers have access to the backend of this program which would give them access to Santa’s private information such as his frequent flyer miles, and his personal information such as his credit cards and passport. Whereas for an everyday person, the idea of stealing Santa’s identity sounds like a one-way ticket for a permanent spot on the naughty list. There are criminals that see this as a great opportunity. As much of a travesty as it may sound for Santa’s identity to be stolen there is still an even more insidious and horrible vulnerability.

 This more insidious vulnerability in the inflight entertainment system would allow the hacker access to the sleigh’s flight control domain. Which means they could possibly crash his sleigh or take it very far off course. It could even change Santa’s onscreen display and invert the naughty and nice lists. If this type of cyber-terrorism does happen it could lead to a ruined Christmas, and many more real world tragedies.

 The cyber security company who originally identified this issue has not notified Santa but has notified the following other Airlines: Air France, Aerolineas Argentinas, Singapore Airlines, FinnAir, Iberia, Etihad, Qatar Airways, KLM, American Airlines, and Scandinavian.

 For more information on this identified threat or for the source of the original Article, please contact FDS Global by email at rmoody@fds.global or by phone at 954-727-1957. Or check out our website at www.FDS.GLobal

 

 


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“Game Console Forensics”

Dear Blast Readers,

 

Many of us have purchased a gaming system for ourselves or for our children. These devices have exponentially increased in complexity 11-game-consel-forensicsand in their auxiliary capabilities. These auxiliary capabilities extend to applications such as Skype, Netflix, and Hulu. Both the Xbox Console and PlayStation Console have a built-in web browser. With exposure to the world-wide web comes the need for forensics on these devices.

 

Digital Forensics has expanded beyond the realm of phones and computers to include Gaming Systems. Game System Forensics can provide a very deep insight into the activity occurring on these devices. FDS Global has had several cases involving videogame consoles. FDS global has investigated cyber bullying through the chat functions. FDS Global has also extracted log files from these machines to investigate Skype conversations.

 

To perform an investigation dealing with Game System Forensics, just like the other forms of digital forensics the first step is to preserve a copy of the hard drive contained within the game systems. We are now in a time where Video-Game Consoles have 1 terabyte Hard drives and the ability to utilize external hard drives. This means that as a forensic investigator it is important to make sure you capture all data, including external drives.

 

Once you have a good copy of the data on the Video-Game Console you can proceed as normal with your investigation. As a parent keep in mind when buying your child one of these devices, that they are most likely asking for, you are buying them a very powerful computer that has many more capabilities than just playing video games.

For more information on Game System Forensics or about FDS Global contact us by phone at 954-727-1957 or by email at rmoody@forensic-data-svc.com. Check out our website at www.FDS.global.