The week in security: Tightening the screws on malware

It’s February, and with it comes the long-awaited Notifiable Data Breaches (NDB) scheme. With weeks to go it may be a little late to fix users’ bad security habits in time, but that’s not the only problem: poor ‘soft skills’ among technologists are, in many business leaders’ estimation, the reason it feels like nothing can get done on time or with the expected quality.

As the ever-challenging effort to release a workable fix for the Spectre bug continued into its second month, Microsoft released a patch to fix Intel’s patch, including the ability to turn this patch on and off.

Cryptocurrency malware is growing in popularity, with 1 in 5 companies already hit by the software and Kaseya enterprise users hit by Monero mining malware.

Mining tools are just one of many types of malware plaguing users these days, and Google revealed it had blocked 700,000 bad apps from its Play Store for violations of its developer rules.

That wasn’t the only vector for dodgyware, however: malvertising had led 500,000 victims to 90 malicious Chrome Web Store extensions, by reports.

Microsoft was also tightening the screws on dodgy software producers, warning that it would remove apps with coercive messaging such as cleaners and optimisers alleging problems with the user’s computer.

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