Sun 24th May 2015

Posts Tagged ‘cybercrime’

McAfee Issue Warning for Olympic Security

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

During the Euro2012 football tournament, McAfee issued a report listing the ‘most dangerous football team’, i.e. a collection of football players whose names, when searched on the internet, gave the highest possibility of accidentally downloading malware.
Now the Olympics is here, the potential for similar dangerous web searches coming up again is a very real threat. With the Olympics being markedly bigger than Euro 2012, McAfee have urged internet users to be very careful with their PCs, laptops and mobile phones. During big tournaments such as these, cyber criminals like to use an exciting event to try to compromise the safety of more computers.
McAfee have expressed particular concern for mobile phones. Apps are a particularly popular way of targeting those people looking for ways to connect with big events. Anyone can put up apps and encourage people to download, so many cyber criminals find this an easy way to target users.
Other cyber criminals might lure users in by saying that they can buy cheap or free tickets to Olympic events, but instead the link that they send directs the user to a website where malware is downloaded onto their computer. During an event like the Olympics, with thousands of people wanting tickets, there are many chances for cyber criminals to play on people’s desires to see the Games.
McAfee and other security firms urge users to make sure their antivirus software updates are downloaded, and that they are wary of links sent to them or found in searches that promise things that seem too good to be true. This is true any time of the year, but will be particularly pertinent when Olympic fever grips the world.

Guest Article by Sophie Camp

McAfee Warns Companies Against IT Security Cuts

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

Mid-sized companies which try to cope with the economic downturn by cutting computer security budgets are risking losing more money as they open themselves up to cybercrime.

In a situation which will undoubtedly play out across the whole business scene, cutting back on IT security is a false economy, and say McAfee, is often justified by the companies thinking that the cybercriminal is only interested in larger companies. This say McAfee is the Security Paradox and is the title of a comprehensive research report on mid-sized companies and their approach to IT security.

The McAfee report shows that half of mid-size companies surveyed globally have seen more security incidents in the past year. Indeed, one mid-sized company alone lost $43,000 on average to security incidents. Yet the majority of these same companies are nevertheless reporting spending freezes on their IT security budgets.

But mid-sized companies mistakenly believe that cybercriminals will overlook them for bigger targets. The McAfee report showed that 43% of mid-sized companies questioned believed that companies with 501+ employees are most at risk for a security attack.

Whereas, in reality, on average companies with less than 500 employees actually suffer from more attacks.

Darrell Rodenbaugh, senior vice president of global midmarket for McAfee, said:
“An organization’s level of worry and awareness about increasing threats has not overcome the downward pressure on budgets and resources. But this creates a vicious cycle of breach and repair that costs far more than prevention. Our research shows that organizations that put more effort on preventing attacks can end up spending less than a third as much as those that allow themselves to be at risk.”

The McAfee report goes on to say that 65% of midi-size organisations surveyed worldwide spend less than four hours a week on IT security proactively, but nearly the same amount (67%) spend more than a day recovering from IT security attacks. The report also highlighted the varying approaches in countries across the world. Interestingly, the countries where companies invested the least time on prevention, Canada and France amongst them, suffered the greatest financial losses and downtime from cybercrime. And they required a week, or longer to recover from their most recent cyber-attack.

Other facts that the report also revealed include:

  • in 2008, US mid-sized companies spent a total of $17.2 billion fixing IT security incidents;
  • last year, on average, a single US mid-sized company spent more than $75,000 a year on IT security incidents;
  • the mid-sized company has seen, on average, a 322% increase from 2008 to 2009 of average cyber-attacks;
  • over half (56%) of mid-sized companies globally have seen more security incidents this year than last, and 29% suffered a security breach in the last year;
  • in the past there years, of the mid-sized companies that have had security breaches, those with 101 to 500 people have had about 24 incidents compared to only 15 incidents for organizations with 501 to 1,000 employees.

Guest Article by Neil Camp

Intel joins McAfee Initiative to Fight Cybercrime

Thursday, October 29th, 2009

McAfee has been joined in the fight against cybercrime by the computer chip manufacturer Intel Corporation Inc.

As the newest member of The McAfee Initiative to Fight Cybercrime Advisory Council, Intel is said by the computer security company to be well-versed in the areas of cybercrime and defense, and is able to provide best practices from a real-world perspective.

McAfee created The McAfee Initiative to Fight Cybercrime Advisory Council to ensure its initiatives are sustainable by harnessing the insights and energy of leaders who have already made a difference in this critical area. Former White House Cybersecurity Adviser Howard A. Schmidt chairs the global group.

Representing Intel on the council is Steve Grobman, director of cybersecurity technology and initiatives at Intel Corporation. He leads a team responsible for all aspects of security related to Intel products which includes the development of platform technologies that address current and future security challenges, as well as security assurance and policy.

The McAfee Initiative to Fight Cybercrime was first announced in October 2008 as a wide ranging initiative aimed at closing critical gaps in the fight against cybercrime. It is anchored by a multi-point plan that includes calls for action from all the areas that are so badly affected by cybercrime, including: law enforcement, academia, service providers, government, the security industry and society at large.

The priority of The McAfee Initiative to Fight Cybercrime is to deliver more effective investigations and prosecutions of cybercrime.

More information is available at:

Based in Santa Clara, California, McAfee Inc is the world's largest dedicated security technology company.

McAfee strongly believes in its commitment to relentlessly tackle the world's toughest security challenges and delivers proactive and proven solutions, and services, that help secure systems and networks around the world.

This allows users to safely connect to the Internet, browse and shop the web more securely. McAfee is backed by an award-winning research team which creates innovative products that advises businesses, the public sector, service providers and home users. It sets out to enable them all to prove compliance with regulations, protect data, prevent disruptions, identify vulnerabilities, and continuously monitor and improve their security.

Guest Article by Neil Camp

How To Avoid Phishing Scams

Wednesday, October 28th, 2009

McAfee is not alone in the computer industry in advising its customers how not to become a victim of phishing scams. They provide a number of top tips as to how to avoid falling fall prey to such skulduggery.

Although there are thousands of variations out there, phishing scams are all based on one idea: the bogus email, or instant message, which requests personal information.

Cybercriminals use phishing attacks to trawl for people’s IDs, username and passwords, so that they can copy an identity and breach someone’s bank, or shopping account.

The bogus email plays upon people’s natural inclination to answer an email which they believe at first sight comes from their bank, or online merchant. And phishing emails are becoming ever more sophisticated, becoming very good copies of the actual organisations they are pretending to be.

So take it from McAfee, there are a number of things you can do to avoid being trapped by such attacks.

Firstly, and most importantly, do not respond to emails – even if they appear to be from your bank, or online merchant – that ask you for personal information. In fact, never, ever send back your personal details in an email. Remember that banks and online merchants will never ask for such information via an email. They have it anyway and also, they are only too well aware of the trouble that phishing attacks create.

Secondly, never follow links in an email which appear to link you with your banking, or online merchants sites. Never follow these links, as they could take you onto a very good copy of an existing institution, but actually just be there to take note of your personal details, usernames and passwords.

Thirdly, when you want to visit your bank site, or online merchant, be sure to type the address that you know is correct into your web browser. This ensures that you go to the legimate site and not a bogus site, and you can conduct legimate business. You can also go in of course via a bookmark, or shortcut that you have created yourself.

Fourthly, don’t forget, that if you are ever unsure about an email, you can always telephone your bank, or online merchant, and check with them to see what they might have sent you.

McAfee provide constant updates on the top phishing scams and the top ten are currently (words in the subject line):

  1. security alert!
  2. account notification!
  3. account notification
  4. please confirm your data!
  5. Chase Bank: online banking notification
  6. Chase Bank: necessary to be read!
  7. Chase Bank: important notice
  8. Chase Bank: important security notice
  9. Chase Bank: account secure confirmation
  10. Chase Bank customer service: security alert.

And the top brands currently being exploited by phishing attacks are:

  1. Amazon (72%)
  2. Commonwealth Bank (14%)
  3. eBay (9%).

Guest Article by Neil Camp

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