Think Information. Think Security.
 
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GLENDALE — A 27-year old man faces more than two dozen charges in a so-called sextortion case after allegedly hacking into social media and email accounts of 350 women and extorting them into showing their naked pictures.

Karen “Gary” Kazaryan was arrested without incident Tuesday by agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

He is charged in a federal grand jury indictment with 15 counts of computer intrusion and 15 counts of aggravated identity theft, the U.S. attorney’s office said Tuesday.


 
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The class of targeted attacks known at APTs (advanced persistent threats) is no longer reserved for Fortune 500 companies. As predicted by leading network security experts, APTs have started to infiltrate small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) at an alarming rate. And they are proving to be just as devastating, regardless of the size of the organization or the motive for the attack.

Historically, APT attacks have been created by sophisticated hackers using advanced attack techniques and blended-threat malware. But now, we’re starting to see smarter, every day malware criminals speed up the evolution of APTs and make small and mid-sized organizations even bigger targets. According to Jeremy Grant, senior executive advisor for the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace program, hackers are going after small businesses because they typically have more money and information than individuals and are less protected than large corporations, according to Wired.


 
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Security risks continue to affect large and small businesses intentionally and unintentionally. And the increased use of removable media, mobile devices, remote working and and social media mean opportunities for security breaches are plentiful. Increased reliance on third-party suppliers supporting business activities also opens companies up to wider exposure beyond corporate boundaries.

Given the number and seriousness of information security breaches, you would expect people to have developed a better awareness and common set of practices to protect sensitive data and the numerous devices this data is now stored on or accessible from.


 
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A company’s own employees are a much bigger threat to IT security than hackers, a new survey shows. Here are top ways users threaten security – and why IT departments fail to stop them.  IT departments are typically much more concerned about the security threats posed by user negligence than they are about being attacked by outsiders, according to a recent survey conducted by Irish magazine ComputerScope and IT distributor Data Solutions.

Among the 278 IT pros surveyed, 80% said they are concerned about the impact of careless employees on IT security. In comparison, just 15% are concerned about attacks from external hackers.


 
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What's in store for security in 2013?

On the information security front, 2012 was notable in numerous ways: for Muslim hacktivists launching distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks against U.S. banks, the FBI busting alleged LulzSec and Anonymous leaders, eccentric antivirus founder John McAfee's flight from justice, the apparent data security missteps of the former director of the CIA, as well as a nonstop stream of website hacks, defacements, and data breaches.

Expect more of the same for 2013, and then some. Here are some of the top information security trends -- and vulnerability warnings -- that experts are calling out for the upcoming year:


 
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Things already sounded fishy in Steubenville, Ohio, where the alleged gang rape and kidnapping of an unconscious 16-year-old by two of the town's high-school football players has turned into a complex web of accusation, shock, and, well, Instagram photos. But conflicting reports over an already emotional case became that much more complex today when a WikiLeaks-style site dumped new information about team boosters, the town sheriff, and the alleged "Rape Crew" online — information rounded up, of course, by the anonymous hacking collective known as Anonymous.

It rose to national prominence last month when The New York Times ran a lengthy report from Steubenville, on the August incident and its intersection of football, the law, and social media.