Saturday, May 13, 2017

FutureWatch - Bugs That Know What You Are Up To

Modern day sensors have become so small and sophisticated that gathering the data from a single point has become easy. The difficult part involves figuring out what to do with the information. Lead researcher Gierad Laput... “The average user doesn’t care about a spectrogram of EMI emissions from their coffee maker,” he said. “They want to know when their coffee is brewed.”
Synthetic Sensors aren’t just limited to detecting one activity or device at a time. The suite of sensors allows it to detect a variety of inputs at once... more

This Week in Spycam News - Cautionary Tales for our Times

• Fired former London teacher pleads to 16 charges for secret videos shot in staff changeroom at school. more

• “Roger” is a security guard. He’s vague on the exact details, but his jobs afford him access to several rooftops in the downtown area of an unnamed city. One of these roofs has a view of a high-rise hotel across the street. The building’s windows are so high up that guests tend to feel safe leaving the curtains open. So, Roger climbs out onto a ledge on the roof, trains his handheld high-zoom camera on the uncovered windows, and hits record. Then, if he happens to catch an unsuspecting woman, especially a naked one, he posts the video on the Internet. more

• Deputies in Chester charged a man with voyeurism Sunday after receiving a report that he hid a cell phone in a teen girl’s bedroom that took footage of her as she left the shower naked, police said. more

Read more here:

• A Kingston man has been charged by the Ontario Provincial Police in Quinte West after a woman reported a camera taking her picture. She had been in the changing area of a Trenton business when she noticed a camera taking a picture of her. At that time the OPP charged the accused with one count of voyeurism. more

• A man is charged with video recording a 16-year-old girl without her knowledge while she was in the shower, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office. more

• An ex-finance director who hid spycams to secretly film almost 700 videos of colleagues has walked free from court. Mark Logan planted the cameras in digital clocks in a toilet at the Wheatley Group offices in Glasgow city centre. The shamed 48 year-old also carried out the crime while on business trips in Edinburgh and London. A sheriff heard how Logan could be seen in footage putting a device on the bedside table of one of his victims... The secret cameras had been hidden in a toilet. Logan was snared when bosses at Wheatley discovered three digital clocks which had recording equipment inside them. more

• Former Palm Beach Gardens High School's athletic director William Weed has turned in his resignation. Weed was arrested Monday after an investigation that started in February. A police report stated that he used a covert camera to obtain videos and images of a female juvenile. more

Businesses: Embarrassment, reputation damage and lawsuits are the end result of these incidents. Learn how to protect your employees, customers, visitors and yourself. more

North Korean Spy News

• In a nation as bizarre as North Korea is, it comes as no surprise that their broadcasting of secret spy codes over the airwaves would be equally as bizarre.

While no official explanation for North Korea’s coded broadcasts has been solidified, many believe that the seemingly random numbers and phrases are codes understood by North Korean spies living under the radar in South Korea. more numbers stations

• North Korean prosecutors Friday demanded the extradition of those they say plotted to assassinate leader Kim Jong Un, including South Korea's outgoing spy chief and unnamed "masterminds" in the US Central Intelligence Agency.

The demand comes a week after the North sensationally alleged it uncovered a US-South Korean plot to kill Kim with biochemical, radioactive or poisonous substances during a major event, such as a military parade. more

Uber Spying - Waymo than you know says Google

Uber is being sued by Waymo, the business unit developing self-driving vehicles at Google's parent company Alphabet, over allegations of technology theft.

The suit accuses former Google engineer Anthony Levandowski of stealing technology when he left the company to create a start-up called Otto, which was also building self-driving cars.

Uber acquired Otto for $680m (£540m) last year, at which point Mr Levandowski began to oversee Uber's work on developing autonomous cars. more

Corporate Espionage Countermeasures Tips

via – American Greed Report
Corporate espionage schemes can occur when people already working for someone else infiltrate a company, or employees who've already left a company leave behind co-conspirators who send them data.

Some important steps companies can take:
  • Install technology that monitors everything going into your email system to determine if it's a legitimate message or if it's phishing or malware.
  • Monitor for what's going out of your email system as well by installing leakage control systems. These can, for example, tell whether data is being sent to Dropbox or personal Google, Amazon or Microsoft cloud accounts. They can also monitor for documents or spreadsheets going out.
  • Use whitelisting, which lets you specify which applications are approved to run on a computer system. Anything not on the whitelist won't run, which protects the network from malware and other harmful applications.
  • Consult with labor employment counsel to make sure your agreements on who owns intellectual property and prohibiting misuse or removal of such property are up to date. more

Friday, May 12, 2017

The Unexpected Keystroke Logger on Some HP Laptops

The audio driver installed on some HP laptops includes a feature that could best be described as a keylogger, which records all the user's keystrokes and saves the information to a local file, accessible to anyone or any third-party software or malware that knows where to look.

Swiss cyber-security firm modzero discovered the keylogger on April 28 and made its findings public today.

According to researchers, the keylogger feature was discovered in the Conexant HD Audio Driver Package version and earlier.

This is an audio driver that is preinstalled on HP laptops. One of the files of this audio driver is MicTray64.exe (C:\windows\system32\mictray64.exe).

This file is registered to start via a Scheduled Task every time the user logs into his computer. According to modzero researchers, the file "monitors all keystrokes made by the user to capture and react to functions such as microphone mute/unmute keys/hotkeys."

This behavior, by itself, is not a problem, as many other apps work this way. The problem is that this file writes all keystrokes to a local file at: C:\users\public\MicTray.log more

Friday, May 5, 2017

Competitive Intelligence is a Euphemism for Business Espionage

How far would you go to figure out what the competition is up to? 

Test out their products and services to see how they work? Hire away their staff to learn their tricks? Monitor their job listings to glean insight about upcoming initiatives?

Such tactics are par for the course in the technology industry, in which companies go to great lengths to size up their competition.

The latest example is Uber, which according to a New York Times report employs what it calls a “competitive intelligence” team to study its rivals. That team bought anonymized data — including information on Lyft receipts gleaned from customer in-boxes — from analytics firm Slice Intelligence. more

Competitive Intelligence is a euphemism for Business Espionage. Smart businesses employ Business Counterespionage, which is a euphemism for companies like mine. ~Kevin

Sounds Like Spying - Ultrasonic Sounds

Your smartphone may have some apps that are continuously listening inaudible, high-frequency ultrasonic sounds from your surroundings and they know where you go, what you like and dislike — all without your knowledge.

Click to enlarge.
Ultrasonic Cross-Device Tracking is a new technology that some marketers and advertising companies are currently using to track users across multiple devices and have access to more information than ever before for ad targeting.

For example, retail stores you visit, a commercial on TV or an advertisement on a web page can emit a unique "ultrasonic audio beacon" that can be picked up by your device’s mobile application containing a receiver. more

I plan to run some tests on this. ~Kevin