Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Hackers aren't just picking on Microsoft - study

Filed under
Security

Online criminals turned their attention to antivirus software and media players like Apple Computer Inc.'s iTunes in the first three months of 2005 as they sought new ways to take control of users' computers, according to a survey released on Monday.

While hackers continued to poke new holes in Microsoft Corp.'s popular Windows operating system, they increasingly exploited flaws in software made by other companies as well, the nonprofit SANS Institute found.

As more Windows users agreed to receive security upgrades automatically, hackers looked to take advantage of other software programs that might not be patched as frequently, the head of the cybersecurity training and research organization said.

"Operating systems have gotten better at finding and fixing things and auto-updating, so it's less fertile territory for the hackers," said SANS Chief Executive Alan Paller.

Malicious hackers exploit security holes to lift credit-card numbers and other sensitive personal information from a user's computer, or commandeer it to send out spam and pornography.

More than 600 new Internet security holes have surfaced in 2005 so far, SANS found.

Of those, 20 were deemed most dangerous because they remain unfixed on a large number of Internet-connected computers even though software makers quickly made patches available.

As always, Microsoft products were a popular target.

Hackers found ways to take control of a user's computer by tunneling through Microsoft's Web browser, media player and instant-messaging software, as well as Windows software for servers and personal computers.

But software by Oracle Corp. and Computer Associates International Inc. also made the list, along with media players like Apple's iTunes, RealNetworks Inc.'s RealPlayer, and Nullsoft's Winamp.

Anti-virus products from Symantec Corp.. F-Secure, TrendMicro and McAfee Inc. proved vulnerable as well, a prospect Paller found particularly discouraging.

"We ought to do better in our industry -- we should be a model for others," he said.

The complete list can be found at sans.org.

Source.

More in Tux Machines

Linux/FOSS Events

  • The Linux Foundation Announces Session Lineup for ApacheCon(TM) Europe
  • OpenShift Commons Gathering event preview
    We're just two months out from the OpenShift Commons Gathering coming up on November 7, 2016 in Seattle, Washington, co-located with KubeCon and CloudNativeCon. OpenShift Origin is a distribution of Kubernetes optimized for continuous application development and multi-tenant deployment. Origin adds developer and operations-centric tools on top of Kubernetes to enable rapid application development, easy deployment and scaling, and long-term lifecycle maintenance for small and large teams. And we're excited to say, the 1.3 GA release of OpenShift Origin, which includes Kubernetes 1.3, is out the door! Hear more about the release from Lead Architect for OpenShift Origin, Clayton Coleman.

Security News

  • Report: Linux security must be upgraded to protect future tech
    The summit was used to expose a number of flaws in Linux's design that make it increasingly unsuitable to power modern devices. Linux is the operating system that runs most of the modern world. It is behind everything from web servers and supercomputers to mobile phones. Increasingly, it's also being used to run connected Internet of Things (IoT) devices, including products like cars and intelligent robots.
  • security things in Linux v4.6
    Hector Marco-Gisbert removed a long-standing limitation to mmap ASLR on 32-bit x86, where setting an unlimited stack (e.g. “ulimit -s unlimited“) would turn off mmap ASLR (which provided a way to bypass ASLR when executing setuid processes). Given that ASLR entropy can now be controlled directly (see the v4.5 post), and that the cases where this created an actual problem are very rare, means that if a system sees collisions between unlimited stack and mmap ASLR, they can just adjust the 32-bit ASLR entropy instead.

Raspberry Pi PIXEL and More Improvements

Trainline creates open source platform to help developers deploy apps and environments in AWS