​The week in security: Open season on IoT, Android as executives slammed on poor security

Even though cybercrime attacks are apparently cheaper to clean up in Australia than elsewhere, better security remains a compelling goal. One NICTA researcher believes the lessons his team has learnt in building hack-proof drones could help counter the woeful security “naiveté” shown by Internet of Things (IoT) developers.

Yet IoT developers aren't the only ones complacent about security: healthcare employees, too, have been fingered as being far too lax in their approach to security. Ditto Victorian public-service executives, who have been flagged – again – in an auditor's report that says they just aren't listening to concerns about security.

They should be, given new research suggesting Australian credit-card details and personal information fetch a tidy price on the black market. Even as authorities disrupted the Dridex online-banking botnet, it would seem to be time well spent for security executives to carefully consider the SANS Institute's list of the top 20 security controls businesses should implement.

One advertising network is taking on malvertisers, while Cisco Systems has dedicated an entire security project to “pissing off the bad guys”.

With 87 percent of Android devices found in a university study to be vulnerable to attack, malware authors were jazzing up their mobile approach, offering Android ransomware with a swish new UI and compliance with Google's Material Design specifications.

Even phishing Web sites were polishing off their look with SSL certificates from major companies lending them an undeserved air of gravitas. One form of malware copied Google's Chrome browser, with malware extras bundled in for free.

Meanwhile, Google streamlined Chrome's HTTPS notification icons. Apple pulled iOS apps that were found to be siphoning data off of victims' iPhones, even as reports suggested Apple's Mac OS X security honeymoon was over and the company was well and truly on the malware radar. To reduce your exposure, It might be time to uninstall Flash altogether.

In the context of a security landscape that has changed rapidly in the last 5 years, Dropbox has been working to balance security and usability, while others are focused on tightening endpoint security as much as possible.

Australian banking apps were being targeted by hackers, while Yahoo has pushed ahead with its plans to abandon passwords – using push notifications instead.

Apropos of nothing, security-industry legend John McAfee has formed a political party, the Cyber Party – and one of his first policies is to pardon all marijuana offenders. It's not clear how that would improve cyber security, but he's clearly a man full of ideas.


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Tags poor securitynictaInternet of Things (IoT)Androidcybercrime attacksIoTCSO Australia

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