Security roundup: New site streams footage from thousands of private webcams

Kaspersky offers up its top tips for preventing internet-connected devices being hijacked
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This week we look at how to prevent webcam hacking, the potential for cyber attacks on the Square Mile, and how thousands have fallen for a ‘free Audi R8’ Facebook scam.

Following the news of the discovery of a new website that streams footage from thousands of private webcams, Kaspersky’s principal security researcher, David Emm, has detailed these three steps to take to prevent your internet-connected device being hijacked:

1. Start by securing the device that provides access to the internet – your router. Change the default administrator password (it’s easy for an attacker to find out the standard username and password set by the manufacturer for a device). Ensure that it’s using WPA2 encryption. Switch off SSID, so that the name of your router isn’t broadcast to anyone within range.

2. Change the default password for any other devices you use – baby monitors, webcams, printers, etc.

3. Ensure your mobile devices are fully protected with security software. Cyber attacks aimed at mobile devices are increasing rapidly and it’s no longer just our laptops and desktop PCs that need protecting.

Kaspersky has also reviewed the malware situation in Q3. The findings reveal that over a billion malicious attacks were blocked on the PCs and mobile devices of Kaspersky Lab users – 33.1 per cent more than in the previous quarter.

Meanwhile, KPMG has responded to a warning from the head of the City of London police, which suggested there is a ‘very strong likelihood’ of a cyber attack on financial institutions in the Square Mile.

“A warning from the police serves as a salutary reminder that Britain can no longer regard itself as a digital island, isolated from world events and global cyber threats,” commented KPMG’s Stephen Bonner.

“Financial meltdown from cyber attack currently remains the stuff of Hollywood, but we still need to think beyond current threats and look to a future which is likely to include more political extremism by increasingly cyber-savvy groups. Whether we choose to describe those attacks as terrorism, or not, is a political choice. The need for effective cyber defences remains the same.”

The firm has also recently reported that UK companies are admitting that they are considering turning to ex-hackers in a bid to stay one step ahead of cyber criminals.

In other news, Bitdefender has warned that over 200,000 Facebook users have so far fallen prey to a ‘life-farming’ scam promising two free Audi R8 cars.

The bait spreads on fraudulent web pages and Audi communities, targeting car lovers with malicious videos depicting an Audi R8 racing against a Nissan GT-R.

"Like-farming may not seem the worse things scammers can do on Facebook. However, it has repercussions for users and companies' reputations and can even lead to identity theft,” states Catalin Cosoi, chief security strategist at Bitdefender.

“Like-farming Facebook pages use the high number of fans to launch other fraudulent activities such as malware and survey scams to a wide audience. The database of unwary users can also be sold on the black market and used for more targeted attacks.”

Webcam image via Shutterstock.com

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