Back End News – Enterpris Philippines
Enterprise Technology - Business, Cloud, Cybersecurity, IoT
Kaspersky uncovers espionage campaign using rare malware known as firmware bootkit - Backend News
Kaspersky’s researchers uncovered an advanced persistent threat (APT) espionage campaign that uses a very rarely seen type of malware known as a firmware bootkit. The new malware was detected by Ka…
Kasperskys researchers uncovered an advanced persistent threat (APT) espionage campaign that uses a very rarely seen type of malware known as a firmware bootkit. The new malware was detected by Kasperskys UEFI / BIOS scanning technology, which detects known and unknown threats. The scanning technology identified a previously unknown malware in the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI), an essential part of any modern computing device, making it very difficult to detect and remove from the infected devices. The UEFI bootkit used with the malware is a custom version of the Hacking Teams bootkit, leaked in 2015. UEFI firmware is an essential part of a computer, which starts running before the operating system and all the programs installed in it. If UEFI firmware is somehow modified to contain malicious code, that code will be launched before the operating system, making its activity potentially invisible to security solutions. This, and the fact that the firmware itself resides on a flash chip separate from the hard drive, makes attacks against UEFI exceptionally evasive and persistent the infection of the firmware essentially means that regardless of how many times the operating system has been reinstalled, the malware planted by the bootkit will stay on the device. Targeted ransomware groups spotted in Southeast Asia Kaspersky expert Study finds over 4-in-10 WFH employees in SEA find it hard to switch-off after work Kaspersky researchers found a sample of such malware used in a campaign that deployed variants of a complex, multi-stage modular framework dubbed as MosaicRegressor. The framework was used for espionage and data gathering with UEFI malware being one of the persistent methods for this new, previously unknown malware. The revealed UEFI bootkit components were based heavily on the “Vector-EDK” bootkit developed by Hacking Team and which source code was leaked online in 2015. The leaked code most likely allowed perpetrators to build their own software with little development effort and diminished risk of exposure. The attacks were found with the help of Firmware Scanner, which has been included in Kaspersky products since the beginning of 2019. This technology was developed to specifically detect threats hiding in the ROM BIOS, including UEFI firmware images. While it was not possible to detect the exact infection vector that allowed the attackers to overwrite the original UEFI firmware, Kaspersky researchers deduced one option of how it could be done based on what is known about VectorEDK from leaked Hacking Team documents. These suggest, without excluding other options, that infections might have been possible through physical access to the victims machine, specifically with a bootable USB key, which would contain a special update utility. The patched firmware would then facilitate the installation of a Trojan downloader malware that enables any payload suitable for the attackers needs to be downloaded when the operating system is up and running. In the majority of cases, however, MosaicRegressor components were delivered to victims using far less sophisticated measures, such as spearphishing delivery of a dropper hidden in an archive together with a decoy file. The multiple modules structure of the framework enabled the attackers to conceal the wider framework from analysis, and deploy components to target machines on-demand only. The malware initially installed on the infected device is a Trojan-downloader, a program capable of downloading additional payload and other malware. Tweet Depending on the payload downloaded, the malware could download or upload arbitrary files from/to arbitrary URLs and gather information from the targeted machine. Based on the affiliation of the discovered victims, the researchers were able to determine that MosaicRegressor was used in a series of targeted attacks aimed at diplomats and members of NGOs from Africa, Asia and Europe. Some of the attacks included spearphishing documents in the Russian language, while some were related to North Korea and used as a lure to download malware. The campaign has not been linked with confidence to any known advanced persistent threat actors. In order to stay protected from threats such as MosaicRegressor, Kaspersky recommends:
- Provide your SOC team with access to the latest threat intelligence (TI). The Kaspersky Threat Intelligence Portal is a single point of access for the companys TI, providing cyberattack data and insights gathered by Kaspersky over more than 20 years.
- For endpoint level detection, investigation and timely remediation of incidents, implement EDR solutions, such as Kaspersky Endpoint Detection and Response.
- Provide your staff with basic cybersecurity hygiene training, as many targeted attacks start with phishing or other social engineering techniques.
- Use a robust endpoint security product that can detect the use of firmware, such as Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business.
- Regularly update your UEFI firmware and only purchase firmware from trusted vendors.
Lenovo unveils the ‘featherweight’ ThinkPad X1 Nano - Backend News
Technology company Lenovo recently unveiled the latest addition to its premium X1 portfolio: the ThinkPad X1 Nano. Considered to be the lightest ThinkPad ever at just 1.99 lbs (907g), it aims to br…
Technology company Lenovo recently unveiled the latest addition to its premium X1 portfolio: the ThinkPad X1 Nano. Considered to be the lightest ThinkPad ever at just 1.99 lbs (907g), it aims to break new grounds in terms of performance and functionality in a featherweight package. Lenovos first ThinkPad based on the Intel Evo platform and powered by 11th Gen Intel Core processors, the X1 Nano promises to deliver “supreme speed and intelligence” while maintaining outstanding battery life. The visuals are delivered through a narrow-bezel 13-inch 2K display with a 16:10 aspect ratio, and four speakers and four 360-degree microphones enhance the audio-visual capabilities. ThinkPad X1 Nano is expected to be available in the fourth quarter 2020. Prices are expected to start at $1,399. Lenovo launches new premium tablets for work, learning Lenovo brings back smartphone lineup with AI features Connectivity is provided by WiFi 65 and optional 5G which is hoped to deliver higher bandwidth capability and drive new levels of always on always connected efficiency and collaboration in a new hybrid working world. Packed with up to 11th Generation Intel Core i7 processors with Intel Iris Xe graphics, X1 Nano promises to deliver up to 2.7x faster content creation, more than 20% faster office productivity9, and more than 2x faster gaming plus streaming10 in real-world workflows over competitive products. The Thunderbolt offers fast, single cable connection to power, monitors, storage, and many other external devices. X1 Nano is the first ThinkPad to feature an updated suite of AI and biometric ThinkShield security features. These range from new voice recognition and human presence detection that enable zero-touch login and device lock when the user walks away to the familiar Match on Chip Fingerprint Reader. Lenovo also announced that the worlds first foldable PC, ThinkPad X1 Fold, is available to order with prices starting at $2,499 and will ship in a few weeks. The X1 Fold offers a mix of portability and versatility that defines a new computing category enabled by Intel Core processors with Intel Hybrid Technology and made possible by Intels Project Athena innovation program.
PayMaya partners with Gabay Guro to promote financial inclusion to teachers - Backend News
In partnership with Gabay Guro, the flagship advocacy program for teachers of the PLDT-Smart Foundation, PayMaya aims to encourage teachers to open their own financial accounts so they can easily p…
In partnership with Gabay Guro, the flagship advocacy program for teachers of the PLDT-Smart Foundation, PayMaya aims to encourage teachers to open their own financial accounts so they can easily participate in the digital economy. PayMaya will serve as the “e-Wallet” of the newly launched Gabay Guro app, enabling teachers to do basic financial transactions such as sending money, paying their bills and purchases, and buying airtime load. They can also gain extra income opportunities as well, aside from being able to access teaching tools, resources, and the Gabay Guro online community. By embedding PayMaya’s functionalities within the Gabay Guro app, PLDT-Smart Foundation and PayMaya are promoting digital financial inclusion and financial stewardship among our teachers. PayMaya says bank transfer via InstaPay is still free until Oct. 31 Customers of home services app GoodWork can now pay using PayMaya PayMaya will also be working with the PLDT-Smart Foundation in integrating financial education with current Gabay Guro online trainings to help teachers manage their finances better. To encourage our country’s more than one million teachers nationwide to open their own financial accounts, PayMaya is giving away P300,000 worth of prizes in time for the Gabay Guro Grand Gathering held annually. Raffle All teachers have to do is download the PayMaya app, register for an account using their mobile number, and enter PYMYGABAYGURO as the referral code in the field provided to qualify for the raffle promo running from Oct. 3 to 10, 2020. Teachers will have the chance to be one of 100 winners of P1,000, 10 winners of P10,000, or the sole grand raffle prize winner of P100,000. Teachers and students likewise can safely and conveniently avail of discounted mobile data packages for online schooling through the PayMaya app, no matter what mobile network they are using. They simply have to go to the Shop section of the PayMaya app to purchase the mobile data package that they need, which they can send to their own or another person’s mobile number. The discount amount will be sent to their account via a cashback voucher which they can also redeem within the app. Teachers just have to download the PayMaya app for Android or iOS here, register for an account using their mobile number, and they can instantly use the app to do various financial transactions. The much-anticipated Gabay Guro yearly event in honor of our educators serves as the culmination of the National Teachers Month, celebrated every Sept. 5 until Oct. 5, which is World Teachers Day.
Akamai finds 20% of credential stuffing attacks directed toward media industry - Backend News
The "Akamai 2020 State of the Internet / Credential Stuffing in the Media Industry" report found that 20% of the 88 billion total credential stuffing attacks observed during the reporting period targeted media companies.
The media industry suffered 17 billion credential stuffing attacks between January 2018 and December 2019 according to a new report from Akamai, the intelligent edge platform for securing and delivering digital experiences. The “Akamai 2020 State of the Internet / Credential Stuffing in the Media Industry” report found that 20% of the 88 billion total credential stuffing attacks observed during the reporting period targeted media companies. Media companies present an attractive target for criminals according to the report, which reveals a 63% year-over-year (YoY) increase in attacks against the video media sector. The report also shows 630% and 208% YoY increases in attacks against broadcast TV and video sites, respectively. At the same time, attacks targeting video services are up 98%, while those against video platforms dropped by 5%. Akamais in-browser threat detection solution protects websites from web skimming The marked uptick in attacks aimed at broadcast TV and video sites appear to coincide with an explosion of on-demand media content in 2019. In addition, two major video services launched last year with heavy support from consumer promotions. These types of sites and services are well aligned with the observed goals of the criminals who target them. 7,000% increase Much of the value in media industry accounts lies in the potential access to both compromised assets, like premium content, along with personal data according to Steve Ragan, Akamai security researcher and author of the State of the Internet / Security report. “We’ve observed a trend in which criminals are combining credentials from a media account with access to stolen rewards points from local restaurants and marketing the nefarious offering as ‘date night’ packages,” Ragan explained in the report. “Once the criminals get a hold of the geographic location information in the compromised accounts, they can match them up to be sold as dinner and a movie.” Video sites are not the sole focus of credential stuffing attacks within the media industry, however. The report notes a staggering 7,000% increase in attacks targeting published content. Newspapers, books and magazines sit squarely within the sights of cybercriminals, indicating that media of all types appear to be fair game when it comes to these types of attacks. The United States was by far the top source of credential stuffing attacks against media companies with 1.1 billion in 2019, an increase of 162% over 2018. France and Russia were a distant second and third with 3.9 million and 2.4 million attacks, respectively. India was the most targeted country in 2019, enduring with 2.4 billion credential stuffing attacks. It was followed by the United States at 1.4 billion and the United Kingdom at 124 million. “As long as we have usernames and passwords, we’re going to have criminals trying to compromise them and exploit valuable information,” Ragan explained. “Password sharing and recycling are easily the two largest contributing factors in credential stuffing attacks. While educating consumers on good credential hygiene is critical to combating these attacks, its up to businesses to deploy stronger authentication methods and identify the right mix of technology, policies, and expertise that can help protect customers without adversely impacting the user experience.” Q1 2020 update Publication of the Akamai 2020 State of the Internet / Credential Stuffing in the Media Industry report was delayed from April to July due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The extra time allowed Q1 2020 data to be added to the original report. Most notably, there was a large spike in malicious login attempts against European video service providers and broadcasters during the first quarter of 2020. One attack in late March, after many isolation protocols had been instituted, directed nearly 350,000,000 attempts against a single service provider over a 24-hour period. Separately, one broadcaster well known across the region was hit with a barrage of attacks over the course of the quarter with peaks that ranged in the billions. Another noteworthy trend during the first quarter was the number of criminals sharing free access to newspaper accounts. Often offered as self-promotional vehicles, credential stuffing campaigns must still be initiated in order to steal the working username and password combinations that are given away. Akamai researchers also observed a decline in the cost of stolen account credentials over the course of the quarter, which traded for approximately $1 to $5 at the start and $10 to $45 for package offers of multiple services. Those prices fell as new accounts and lists of recycled credentials populated the market. The Akamai 2020 State of the Internet / Security Report is available here. For additional information, the security community can access, engage with, and learn from Akamai’s threat researchers and the insight that the Akamai Intelligent Edge Platform affords into the evolving threat landscape, visit Akamai’s Threat Research Hub.
Oppo launches wireless Enco W31 headphones - Backend News
The Oppo Enco W31 Wireless headphones retail price is at P2,990.
Smartphone brand Oppo introduced its newest wireless headphones, the Enco W31, which promises “a truly immersive audio experience, coupled with an outstanding and comfortable design.” The Oppo Enco W31 headphones are designed with a metal texture and geometric patterns and dual microphone with Environment Noise Cancellation feature. With stable Bluetooth connection and performance for smooth pairing, the headphones also boast of an automatic play and pause feature using infrared optical sensors to detect when users are wearing them. The Oppo Enco W31 headphones also feature a bass and balance mode to give users high-definition sound quality and a rhythmic bass for lifelike audio detail. Its smooth connection between headphones allows audio to be transmitted to both ears simultaneously for an undisrupted listening experience. Users can simply use intelligent touch controls and tap the designated earpiece to change the audio mode, skip to the next song, and even activate the voice assistant. For all-day carefree listening of your personal soundtrack, the Oppo Enco W31 Headphones gives up to 15 hours of music playback and up to 12 hours of call time with its charging case, while only needing up to 2.5 hours to fully charge. Equipped with IP54 dust and water resistance, “users can be assured your earphones will be protected wherever you are.” The Oppo Enco W31 Wireless headphones retail price is at P2,990 and available for purchase via all open Oppo concept and online stores, official dealers, and e-commerce partners including Shopee and Lazada.
Toyota Motor PH stages virtual GR Supra GT Cup Asia tournament - Backend News
Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) announced the launch of its first virtual motorsport competition, the GR Supra GT Cup Asia-Philippines.
Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) announced the launch of its first virtual motorsport competition, the GR Supra GT Cup Asia-Philippines. Filipino car and esports racing enthusiasts will now have a crack in the championship to compete against other racing champions in Asia. The GR Supra GT Cup Asia-Philippines is a motorsport program under Toyota’s global Gazoo Racing brand. The Philippine leg is being staged by TMP in partnership with Tuason Racing. This activity expands TMP’s local motorsport development program, which includes its premier one-make-race, the Vios Racing Festival set to resume in 2021 once it’s already declared safe to hold mass gatherings and public events. Interested individuals can register for free at the tournament’s official website. There are two major open categories: the Promotional Class for the novice, casual virtual racers or enthusiasts and the Sporting Class for more advanced racers with professional virtual motorsports experience. Two special classes are also open: the Celebrity and Media class where the third Philippine champion will come from and the Junior class for players below 18 years old. The competition is open to Filipino citizens with a valid Philippine passport, aged 18 and above. Players must have access to a Playstation 4 using their own active PSN account and PS Plus subscription, and the Gran Turismo Sport game. Registration After registration and submission of requirements, qualified applicants will be notified of official game rules and schedules. Official racers will then join a qualifying leaderboard challenge to identify the Top 24 from each class. The Top 24 will then race in the semi-final and the final race heats, and points will be assigned based on finishing time. The first round qualifiers will happen on July 23, while the finals will happen a week after. A second and third round will happen in August and September, respectively, with point values increasing at each round. Players will need to qualify for each round. The players from the two classes to accumulate the most points after the third round will be declared the Philippine champions and will participate in the Asian Regional Round in October.
OPPO offers price drop of select devices for back-to-school promo - Backend News
OPPO is offering a special price drop of its smartphones A5s, A5s Smart, A9 2020, Reno2, and Reno2 F starting this month.
OPPO is offering a special price drop of its smartphones A5s, A5s Smart, A9 2020, Reno2, and Reno2 F starting this month. The price drop offerings will be available at the OPPO concept and online stores, dealer partners, and e-commerce partners Shopee and Lazada. OPPO A5s features a 6.2-inch Corning Gorilla glass screen for an immersive visual experience. It is also packed with a 4230mAh battery for longer use and a Smart Bar that will enable you to organize your learning tools and multitask conveniently. It is also equipped with a dual camera with OPPOs lauded AI Beautification 2.0. OPPO A9 2020 has a 6.5-INCH waterdrop screen, 5,000 mAh battery that OPPO said can last more than 11 hours. it also sports Dolby Atmos Dual Stereo Speakers and comes with 48MP Ultra Wide Quad Camera for photo and video. It can store up to as many files as the users need with the 8GB of RAM and 128GB of ROM. The Reno2 series offers a 6.5-inch screen size and offers “cutting-edge” camera technologies. Its 48MP Quad camera features is designed to capture subjects in clearer, crisper details regardless of the light setting. Both offerings also come with a built-in video editor, Soloop. The Reno2 is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of ROM. Reno2 F runs on MediaTek P70 with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of ROM. These multi-capable handsets are now made even more affordable with #eSchoolWithOPPO Back-To-School Sale. The A-series
- The OPPO A5s (3G+32GB) is now priced at P5,990
- The OPPO A5s Smart is now priced at P4,990
- The OPPO A9 2020 (8+128) is now priced at P12,990
- The OPPO Reno 2F is now priced at P15,990
- The OPPO Reno 20 is now priced at P25,990
Samsung positions Galaxy Tab S6 Lite as learning tool - Backend News
Galaxy Tab S6 Lite’s ergonomic S Pen allows users to quickly write down notes and ideas.
As learning is shifting online because of the pandemic, Samsung highlights the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite’s features that the brand thinks would be helpful to students and educators as well. Galaxy Tab S6 Lites ergonomic S Pen allows users to quickly write down notes and ideas. The tablet is built with 10.4 WUXGA+ display, as well as dual speakers by Dolby Atmos and sound by AKG. The Galaxy Tab S6 Lite is also integrated with Samsungs Galaxy ecosystem. Call and Text Continuity support answers calls and texts anywhere using the tablet. The tablet comes with pre-installed Netflix and Spotify apps. It also comes with Samsung Kids, providing children access to age-appropriate and family-friendly materials. The tablet also lets users enjoy up to four months of free Youtube Premium. Quick Look:
- Android 10 | 467 g
- 10.4-inch (1200 x 2000 pixels, 224 ppi density)
- 64GB storage
- Octa-Core (2.3GHz)
- 8MP rear + 5MP front camera
- S Pen (In-Box, Magnetic)
- Bixby Assistant
- Dual Speakers tuned by AKG and Dolby AtmosTM
Author Simon Sinek headlines online SAS Global Forum 2020 - Backend News
Author and optimist Simon Sinek headlines as SAS execs, partners and customers showcase the widening role of analytics in pandemic response, economic recovery and reimagined future
Image from simonsinek.com As analytics continues to guide and drive the worlds response to COVID-19, SAS debuts the final installment of its premier Virtual SAS Global Forum 2020 on June 16. Kicking off at 11 a.m. ET, and available later on-demand, the nine-hour experience will feature a dynamic array of thought leaders who will delve into analytic innovation, industry-specific insights, and the tools and techniques needed to navigate uncertainty, change, and disruption. Registration is free of charge and open now. Connect, collaborate and share Launching its most robust virtual conference agenda yet, SAS invites participants to create their own experience from SAS, customer, partner, and executive sessions; a virtual Quad experience; super demos; traditional mainstage highlights and SAS education offerings. All will be delivered in an easy-to-consume, online format: SAS Connection: Participants will experience the many uses of SAS from customers like Cleveland Clinic and Georgia-Pacific and explore SAS education and Data for Good initiatives. Executive Connection: Business leaders will hear insights from The Economist Intelligence Units Chris Clague, managing editor and global editorial lead for Trade and Globalization, as well as for analytics innovators, with a focus on business recovery amid the pandemic. Users Connection: SAS will debut even more user-focused sessions on SAS use cases, tools, resources and training. Partner Connection: SAS executives and partners like Deloitte Canada will deep-dive into partner-specific successes and thought leadership. Speakers World-renowned optimist and visionary Simon Sinek will inspire with a moderated conversation based on his best-selling book, The Infinite Game. He will share how leaders can apply the essential rules of the infinite game to stay ahead of the competition. The event will also spotlight SAS executives, including founder and CEO Jim Goodnight; COO and CTO Oliver Schabenberger; and SVP of R&D Engineering Bryan Harris on the future of analyzing data in the cloud, on the edge, and with AI. The Quad will digitally replicate an interactive tradeshow experience, complete with a hands-on look at SAS technology and access to SAS experts. Participants can join demos and presentations, learn more about technology and services, and take part in ask the expert sessions, with virtual technology booths staffed from 12:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. ET. In addition to sharing bold discoveries and fostering innovation, the virtual experience will also be gamified, incentivizing participants to engage in activities throughout the day. It all starts on June 16, and registration is open now. For an event agenda, proceedings and previously released on-demand sessions, visit the Virtual SAS Global Forum 2020 website.
PLDT, Smart expand, upgrade networks across the country amid lockdowns - Backend News
To better support Filipinos’ increasing appetite for video, social media, gaming, and other online activities, PLDT and Smart continue to expand and upgrade their fixed and wireless networks across the country.
As more Filipinos turn to video and other data services amid the COVID-19 crisis, PLDT and its wireless unit Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart) continue to expand and upgrade their fixed and wireless networks across the country, despite challenges presented by the imposition of community quarantine. In the first month after the lockdown was implemented, our network teams faced movement restrictions and we also had to take safety precautions to protect the health of our employees and our customers, said Alfredo S. Panlilio, PLDT chief revenue officer and Smart president and CEO. Resilient networks The beneficial impact of these continuing expansion efforts has been confirmed by independent third-party firms like Opensignal, which published a recent analysis about the resilience of mobile networks in the Philippines amid the Covid-19 emergency. In the Philippines, video has been a big driver of data consumption, and with measures such as the general community quarantine (GCQ) and enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) imposed in response to Covid-19, Filipinos are consuming videos on Youtube, Netflix, and other online streaming services more than ever, putting the mobile networks under pressure, Opensignals Hardik Khatri said in earlier reports. The study, which covered the period from Sept. 1, 2019 to March 31, 2020, showed that while 4G Video Experience in March declined by 7.2% in urban areas and 14.7% in rural areas, the typical 4G Video Experience in the Philippines ranges from Fair to Good, which suggests that the mobile operators have been able to cope well during these extraordinary times. Video To better support Filipinos increasing appetite for video, social media, gaming, and other online activities, PLDT and Smart continue to expand and upgrade their fixed and wireless networks across the country. As of end-March, Smart increased the number of 4G/LTE base stations to 26,000, up 6% from end-2019, and 60% more than end-2018. PLDTs fiber infrastructure, which supports Smarts network by providing high-capacity links to LTE base stations, is now at 338,500 kilometers nationwide, 5% more than end-2019, and up nearly 40% from end-2018. In April, Smart further increased the capacity of its LTE network by reallocating its assigned 1800 Mhz frequency from 2G to 4G/LTE. As a result, 3,785 2G base stations of Smart have also been providing additional capacity for its LTE network.