U.S. and Chinese officials are racing to resolve the case of a fugitive human rights activist, and ensure it doesn’t derail annual talks between top policy makers later this week.
Assistant Secretary of State Kurt Campbell arrived in Beijing yesterday, earlier than planned, to prepare for the gathering, two U.S. officials said yesterday on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner are still scheduled to meet counterparts in Beijing May 3-4 amid reports the U.S. is protecting blind activist Chen Guangcheng, according to the officials, who declined further comment.
In 2011, attacks by so-called hacktivists accounted for more data theft than those motivated by espionage or finance, according to a new comprehensive global report.Verizon’s 2012 Data Breach Investigations Report PDF, which was produced in conjunction with the U.S. Secret Service and law enforcement agencies in Ireland, the Netherlands, the U.K. and Australia, found that 58% of data stolen world-wide was the result of hacktivist activity even though they were responsible for only 3% of the incidents. Cyber criminals continue to be the biggest threat with 83% of data breaches.Hacktivists are computer criminals who target companies typically for political reasons, while cybercriminals tend to be financially motivated. “Most data thieves are professional criminals deliberately trying to steal information they can turn into cash,” according to the report.
Hacktivist group Swagg Security releases log-in credentials for the electronics manufacturing giant and its customers, numerous servers taken offline.
By Mathew J. Schwartz InformationWeek
February 10, 2012 12:45 PM
Anonymous: 10 Facts About The Hacktivist Group
(click image for larger view and for slideshow) A new hacktivist group has breached servers owned by Foxconn, the world’s largest electronics manufacturer, and stolen usernames and passwords for numerous employees and customers.
The hacktivists, who call themselves Swagg Security–tagline: “hacking today for an entertaining tomorrow”–published the log-in credentials via Pastebin and BitTorrent. “Foxconn did have an appropriate firewall, but fortunately to our intent, we were able to bypass it almost flawlessly,” according to a statement released by the group in its Pastebin post.
Under the National Operations Center (NOC)’s Media Monitoring Initiative that emerged from the Department of Homeland Security in November, Washington has written permission to collect and retain personal information from journalists, news anchors, reporters or anyone who uses “traditional and/or social media in real time to keep their audience situationally aware and informed.”
According to DHS, the definition of personal identifiable information can consist of any intellect “that permits the identity of an individual to be directly or indirectly inferred, including any information which is linked or linkable to that individual.”
Clear and present danger: online hacking is one of the biggest national security threats, the Australian Federal Police have warned.
This comes as several high profile banks online systems locally, including ANZ, have been subject to sophisticated hack attacks, meaning not only a headache for the organisations in question but also may potentially put millions of customers personal details, at risk.
”Online attacks are becoming more common as organised criminal gangs and motivated individuals understand the technology of the internet and take advantage of the anonymity that comes with it,” an AFP spokesperson told Fairfax Media today.
”The ability for criminals to use technology to commit crime, attack critical infrastructure, engage in terrorist activity and undermine national security is a very real threat.”
Operation Brotherhood Takedown: Anonymous delivers on DDoS threat.
Friday, those claiming to represent the hacktivist collective known as Anonymous successfully disabled a prominent Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood website. Anonymous is targeting the Muslim Brotherhood In Egypt, claiming the Muslim Brotherhood is a threat to the Egyptian revolution.
Anonymous announced Saturday that DDoS attacks on the Muslim Brotherhood will continue until November 18.
Earlier in the week, the hacktivist collective announced plans to launch a DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack against the Muslim Brotherhood website on Friday, November 11. Anonymous did not disappoint.