Friday, 22 September 2017

Equifax staff direct customers to fake website. It gets even worse for the beleaguered company...

Credit rating firm Equifax has apologised after it mistakenly directed some customers to an imposter website via its Twitter page.

The firm recently disclosed a data breach affecting more than 143 million people, and set up a new website to share information with customers.

But it mistakenly tweeted the wrong web address several times, leading some customers to a fake website.

One security researcher told the BBC it was a "massive faux-pas".

Thursday, 21 September 2017

CCleaner malware appears to actually be targeted espionage against at least 20 tech firms

Hundreds of thousands of computers getting penetrated by a corrupted version of an ultra-common piece of security software was never going to end well. But now it's becoming clear exactly how bad the results of the recent CCleaner malware outbreak may be. Researchers now believe that the hackers behind it were bent not only on mass infections, but on targeted espionage that tried to gain access to the networks of at least 20 tech firms.

Earlier this week, security firms Morphisec and Cisco revealed that CCleaner, a piece of security software distributed by Czech company Avast, had been hijacked by hackers and loaded with a backdoor that evaded the company's security checks. It wound up installed on more than 700,000 computers. On Wednesday, researchers at Cisco's Talos security division revealed that they've now analyzed the hackers' "command-and-control" server to which those malicious versions of CCleaner connected... (Read more).

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Some people need to be told not to eat raw chicken

Chicken sashimi (AKA raw chicken, AKA a Japanese delicacy, AKA potential salmonella poisoning) is growing in popularity - so much so that the UK Food Standards Agency (FSA) has issued a warning reminding people it’s not safe to eat the uncooked bird.

The dish has been served throughout Japan as a delicacy for years, but overseas popularity has recently been growing, with a number of US restaurants adding the dish to their menus. As a result, the #chickensashimi Instagram feed now numbers over 1,000 uploads.

The FSA has felt the need to wade into the debate with the following statement:
“Raw chicken is not safe to eat – it could lead to food poisoning. Chicken should always be cooked thoroughly so that it is steaming hot all the way through before serving.
“To check, cut into the thickest part of the meat and ensure that it is steaming hot with no pink meat and that the juices run clear.
“Consuming raw chicken can lead to illness from campylobacter, salmonella and E. coli. Symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhoea, vomiting, and fever. In some cases, these bugs can lead to serious conditions.”

If, I might have my 2p worth... PLEASE do not eat this. About 25 years ago I spent a week in hospital with campylobacter poisoning from undercooked chicken. Very serious - and very unpleasant! Not worried enough? How about the risk of death? Raw chicken - just say no!

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Celebrating the 4 Millionth British built Vauxhall Astra

As the home of the Vauxhall Astra, Ellesmere Port has been making the British built car for almost 40 years.

And today, proud employees marked the landmark moment the 4 millionth car rolled off the production line, with a choreographed display of 236 Astra Sport Tourers to spell out the feat.

Making the iconic British car since 1981, the plant has provided employment for generations of local families, ploughing millions into the local economy.

The celebratory image (above), which took 12-hours, 57 red and 179 white cars to assemble, spelled out the achievement in Astra’s trademark red, honoring the thousands of employees who have contributed to the momentous milestone.

Ellesmere Port has produced all seven generations of the famous Astra, exporting over two million vehicles to 25 European markets and even Australia in the early years. Today it employs nearly 2,000 people and many more depend on it in the supply chain, as it builds approximately 680 Astras a day.

All of my personal cars for the last 15+ years have been Astras:
Astra SRi 1.4 Turbo 150bhp. White (Mk7 / Model K).
Astra SRi 2.0 CDTI 160bhp. Silver (Mk6 / Model J).
Astra SRi 1.9 CDTI. 150bhp. Silver (Mk5 / Model H).
Astra SRi 1.8i Petrol. 123bhp. 5 Door Hatchback. Silver (Mk4 / Model G).
Astra 1.4 GLSi 5 Door Hatchback. Maroon (Mk3 / Model F).

Monday, 18 September 2017

CCleaner 5.33 infected with Malware!

Version 5.33 of the CCleaner app offered for download between August 15 and September 12 was modified to include the Floxif malware, according to a report published by Cisco Talos.

Floxif is a malware downloader that gathers information about infected systems and sends it back to its C&C server. The malware also had the ability to download and run other binaries, but at the time of writing, there is no evidence that Floxif downloaded additional second-stage payloads on infected hosts.

What's the best Schuberth flip-lid (for me)?

For years now, the Schuberth C3 Pro has been the "go-to" flip-lid motorcycle helmet. It’s a top quality bit of kit that works. Bits don’t fall off, and it will stand up to the rigours of the daily commute. It’s technically the quietest helmet on the market, and Schuberth has always been ahead of the game when it comes to comms.

But earlier this year, Schuberth released a new helmet called the C4. So where does it fit? Will it replace the C3 Pro, or sit alongside it? And what about the original C3 that is now called the C3 Basic?

I can usually make a good quick decision on most things, but this one has me stumped! This is really not as simple one is better than the other: more like an "apples vs oranges" scenario - both great, just very different!
I'm off to Infinity Southampton later this week to find out more: watch this space!

Further reading / watching:

SpaceX on how not to land a rocket booster...

SpaceX showed some tongue in cheek humility today as it released a "blooper" video of the series of crashes and explosions leading up to the first successful landing of the Falcon 9 first stage booster. The two-minute compilation, titled "How Not to Land an Orbital Rocket Booster," shows the many ways that things can go wrong during a landing, and that – like true love – the course of rocketry never did run smooth.

However, SpaceX appears to have now nailed the launch & recovery of their boosters - so well done them!