"Catastrophic” hack on VFEmail destroys almost two decades of data

!!!ALERT!!!! Update Feb 11 2019 and are currently unavailable in their prior form.
We have suffered catastrophic destruction at the hands of a hacker, last seen as aktv@
This person has destroyed all data in the US, both primary and backup systems. We are working to recover what data we can.

Main points:

Timeline -
As of 5am 2/11/19 and are currently unavailable.
We have suffered catastrophic destruction at the hands of a hacker, last seen as aktv@
This person has destroyed all data in the US, both primary and backup systems. We are working to recover what data we can.
New updates 2/11/19 6pm CST:
At this time I am unsure of the status of existing mail for US users. If you have your own email client, DO NOT TRY TO MAKE IT WORK.
If you reconnect your client to your new mailbox, all your local mail will be lost.
AT YOUR OWN RISK - POP users can use ''
IMAP Users should create a new account, then use '' as the IMAP/SMTP server


“Yes, @VFEmail is effectively gone,” VFEmail founder Rick Romero wrote on Twitter Tuesday morning after watching someone methodically reformat hard drives of the service he started in 2001. “It will likely not return. I never thought anyone would care about my labor of love so much that they'd want to completely and thoroughly destroy it.”

VFEmail says data for virtually all US users is gone for good!

Wed, 13 Feb 2019 19:57:00 +0000

More about Windows Sandbox

Windows Sandbox is a new lightweight desktop environment tailored for safely running applications in isolation.

How many times have you downloaded an executable file, but were afraid to run it? Have you ever been in a situation which required a clean installation of Windows, but didn’t want to set up a virtual machine?

 At Microsoft we regularly encounter these situations, so we developed Windows Sandbox: an isolated, temporary, desktop environment where you can run untrusted software without the fear of lasting impact to your PC. Any software installed in Windows Sandbox stays only in the sandbox and cannot affect your host. Once Windows Sandbox is closed, all the software with all its files and state are permanently deleted.

Windows Sandbox has the following properties:

Prerequisites for using the feature

If you have this build here are the steps located here to implement this technology.

The information posted here comes from Microsoft

Wed, 13 Feb 2019 13:21:00 +0000

Internet Romance Scams Be Warned

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has released an article addressing a rise in reports of internet romance scams. In this type of fraud, cyber criminals gain the confidence of their victims and trick them into sending money. Use caution when online dating, and never send money or gifts to someone you have not met in person.

The National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC), part of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), encourages users to review FTC’s article on Romance Scams and NCCIC’s tip on Staying Safe on Social Networking Sites. If you think you have been a target of a romance scam, file a report with

Tue, 12 Feb 2019 20:27:00 +0000

Ransomware Attack Via MSP Locks Customers Out of Systems

Vulnerable plugin for a remote management tool gave attackers a way to encrypt systems belonging to all customers of a US-based MSP.
An attacker this week simultaneously encrypted endpoint systems and servers belonging to all customers of a US-based managed service provider by exploiting a vulnerable plugin for a remote monitoring and management tool used by the MSP.

The attack resulted in some 1,500 to 2,000 systems belonging to the MSP's clients getting cryptolocked and the MSP itself facing a $2.6 million ransom demand.

Discussions this week on an MSP forum on Reddit over what appears to be the same — or at least similar — incident suggest considerable anxiety within the community over such attacks, with a few describing them as a nightmare scenario.

To read the full article go here
Tue, 12 Feb 2019 17:35:00 +0000

Googlle Store Has Vanity Apps Opens Users Up To Attack

    Some people like to look their best and sometimes reality just isn’t enough. With the addition of an altered reality landscape we can add and modify our worlds and ourselves through the lens of our phones. There are apps that can access your phone’s camera, detect your facial position, add features, correct color imbalances, enhance traits that we find desirable, and can remove elements that aren't so desirable. 

    Researchers at Trend Micro have found 29 beauty apps in the Google Play store that have malicious traits. These apps take a user’s desire to be more than what they are to open themselves up for attack. They are connected to remote ad configuration servers that receive data about the device the malicious app is installed upon and directs the victim to attacks tailored for that device.

    The authors of these malicious apps have included efforts to hide traces of their existence in a feeble attempt at permanence. Once downloaded, one of the packages included in these apps will provide the user a shortcut icon to impale themselves upon, but it will hide the app icon from the application list in an attempt to prevent its own deletion. 

    These apps have several methods of monetizing their targets including phishing for personal information, collecting freshly taken photos, or even just accepting payments for services not rendered. They can include false “contests” that result in a request for personal information to deliver a promised prize. One app offers beautification of an image uploaded to its server but never gets it, while the attacker compiles a data set full of images that can be used for future fraudulent social media profiles. Another app pushes an ad for a paid online pornography player which accepts payment and likely collects payment information. The researchers have found that the player does not play despite payment.

    The Google Play Store has already removed these apps from their roster. The top three (Pro Camera Beauty, Cartoon Art Photo, & Emoji Camera) have had over one million downloads each. The next eight have already had downloads in the hundreds of thousands. The large majority of these downloads occurred in Asia, particularly India. 

   The best recommendation is to read reviews in any app that you want to try out. Any reviews that are indicative of malicious behavior is sufficient warning. Anything produced by an untrusted source should be subject to scrutiny, and anything requesting information should be doubly so.
Source trendlabs-security-intelligence/ various-google-play-beauty-cameraapps-sends-users-pornographiccontent-redirects-them-to-phishingwebsites-and-collects-their-pictures/ news/0890709908/google-removes29-malicious-android-camera-appsfrom-play-store wordpress/80666/malware/ malicious-beauty-apps.html
Sat, 09 Feb 2019 17:46:00 +0000

Shortcut to Fear

     Siri sets alarms, calls your mother, and finds you that piece of trivia that’s been itching in your brain for the past week. Siri helps people manage their electronic fears and control their digital world in a human way. So when Siri Shortcuts came along with iOS 12, I’m sure many people were elated at the thought of automating their daily ritual and streamlining repeated complex tasks. 

    While it’s doubtful that most users will automate their household energy consumption or repeatedly perform multi step computations via voice command, the average user might be interested in shortcuts designed by business owners trying to make it smoother to exchange money for services and goods. Also, it just feels a bit cool to do many things with just a click. However, with automation and complexity there’s always an avenue for abuse. Security Intelligence from IBM has outlined a few methods for a pseudo ransom attack involving many of the capabilities of Siri Shortcut.

    The app has the ability to perform many of the phone’s basic functions which can be used to confuse then scare a user into paying a ransom to the attacker. Some of Siri Shortcuts’ capabilities include text to speech, flash light control, vibration control, volume and brightness control, clipboard data collection, data storage manipulation, IP address collection, GPS location information collection, and other forms of information collection.

   The most alarming capability is message creation and deployment along with contact list access. A maliciously crafted shortcut could send a copy of itself to each person in the victim’s contact list. It has been advised time and again to never download anything from an untrusted source, but who would think your grandson would send you anything malicious? Suddenly you’re at an ATM, your phone is vibrating and flashing, it snaps a picture of your face and your bank card, and tells you that you’re being tracked repeating your location and reading your browsing history. Even the most cool-headed person would be shaken and might fall for  the ruse. And if you’re savvy enough to remain composed and ignore it, a co-worker or a cousin might not be.

   A pound of cure is worth an ounce of prevention. Never install shortcuts from untrusted sources. Never allow anything to exist on your phone that requires permissions outside your comfort zone. Take advantage of the “Show Actions” button to see what a shortcut actually does before using it. Constant vigilance when it comes to anything that can run without your direct control is the minimum in this day and age.

 • -ibm
Sat, 09 Feb 2019 17:40:00 +0000

IDenticard PremiSys vulnerabilities

Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team Advisory: 
01/31/2019 10:00 AM EST
This advisory provides mitigation recommendations for use of hard-coded credentials,
use of hard-coded password, and inadequate encryption strength vulnerabilities
reported in the IDenticard PremiSys access control system.   


Thu, 31 Jan 2019 20:05:00 +0000

Cybersecurity Awareness Briefings

DHS Header

    Cybersecurity Awareness Briefings Start Next Wednesday
Webinar: Chinese Cyber Activity Targeting Managed Service Providers
On December 20, 2018, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA)
 announced that malicious actors working on behalf of the Chinese government have
been carrying out a campaign of cyber attacks targeting managed service providers (MSPs).
Victims of these attacks have suffered from the loss of sensitive or proprietary information,
 as well as service disruptions, financial loss, and reputational harm. Organizations of all
sizes, from all sectors, are still at risk for similar attacks in the future. Previously posted
information on this threat can be found here:

Join CISA for a virtual Awareness Briefing to review the background of this threat, as  
well as recommended steps MSPs and their customers can take to protect themselves
from future attacks.

Register now for one of two upcoming Awareness Briefings.
 Content is the same for each session.
  • Wednesday, February 6 at 1:00 p.m. ET
  • Friday, February 22 at 1:00 p.m. ET
Registration is limited, so please register early to guarantee your spot.
This is the latest installment in CISA’s ongoing Awareness Briefing series.
  Recordings of previous Awareness Briefings are available at

Wed, 30 Jan 2019 16:59:00 +0000

Chinese APT10 intrusion activities target Government, Cloud-Computing Managed Service Providers and Customer networks worldwide

The following information is being provided by the FBI, with no guarantees or warranties, for potential use at the sole discretion of recipients in order to protect against cyber threats. This data is provided in order to help cyber security professionals and system administrators to guard against the persistent malicious actions of cyber criminals.  

This FLASH has been released TLP:WHITE. Subject to standard copyright rules, TLP:WHITE information may be distributed without restriction.

Chinese APT10 intrusion activities target Government, Cloud-Computing Managed Service Providers and Customer networks worldwide. The following information was obtained through FBI investigations and is provided in accordance with the FBI's mission and policies to prevent and protect against federal crimes and threats to the national security.

The FBI is providing the following information with HIGH confidence:


The FBI obtained information regarding a group of Chinese APT cyber actors stealing high value information from commercial and governmental victims in the U.S. and abroad.  This Chinese APT group is known within private sector reporting as APT10, Cloud Hopper, menuPass, Stone Panda, Red Apollo, CVNX and POTASSIUM.  This group heavily targets managed service providers (MSP) who provide cloud computing services; commercial and governmental clients of MSPs; as well as defense contractors and governmental entities.  APT10 uses various techniques for initial compromise including spearphishing and malware.  After initial compromise, this group seeks MSP administrative credentials to pivot between MSP cloud networks and customer systems to steal data and maintain persistence.  This group has also used spearphishing to deliver malicious payloads and compromise victims.  

WE NEED YOUR HELP! If you find any of these indicators on your networks, or have related information, please contact  FBI CYWATCH immediately. Email: Phone: 1-855-292-3937

Wed, 30 Jan 2019 13:45:00 +0000

Deploying the Azure Information Protection scanner to automatically classify and protect files

If you heard me talk I say many time we need to start classify our data so the we can protect the critical files and add additional security to those files that are at the highest risk.
We need to protect data based on the risk.  You may have heard me talk About RMS (Right Management Service) or AIP (Azure information Protection). Here is an article on an tool that will help you find and automatically classify file for you.

This article is for the current general availability version of the Azure Information Protection scanner.

If you are looking for deployment instructions for the current preview of the scanner, which includes configuration from the Azure portal, see Deploying the preview version of the Azure Information Protection scanner to automatically classify and protect files.

Use this information to learn about the Azure Information Protection scanner, and then how to successfully install, configure, and run it.

This scanner runs as a service on Windows Server and lets you discover, classify, and protect files on the following data stores:

To scan and label files on cloud repositories, use Cloud App Security.

Overview of the Azure Information Protection scanner

When you have configured your Azure Information Protection policy for labels that apply automatic classification, files that this scanner discovers can then be labeled. Labels apply classification, and optionally, apply protection or remove protection:
The scanner can inspect any files that Windows can index, by using IFilters that are installed on the computer. Then, to determine if the files need labeling, the scanner uses the Office 365 built-in data loss prevention (DLP) sensitivity information types and pattern detection, or Office 365 regex patterns. Because the scanner uses the Azure Information Protection client, it can classify and protect the same file types.

You can run the scanner in discovery mode only, where you use the reports to check what would happen if the files were labeled. Or, you can run the scanner to automatically apply the labels. You can also run the scanner to discover files that contain sensitive information types, without configuring labels for conditions that apply automatic classification.

Note that the scanner does not discover and label in real time. It systematically crawls through files on data stores that you specify, and you can configure this cycle to run once, or repeatedly.

You can specify which file types to scan, or exclude from scanning. To restrict which files the scanner inspects, define a file types list by using Set-AIPScannerScannedFileTypes.

To learn more go Here
Tue, 29 Jan 2019 13:39:00 +0000