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Typical 4 Channels Through Which Ransomware Is Distributed

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Tim Ismilyaev, CEO & Founder of Mana Security speaks on how hackers work and what minimum protective measures everyone should implement on their personal computers.

The G7 countries have banded together against ransomware hacking attacks on schools, hospitals and companies. During the pandemic, this number of attacks only intensified. Representatives from seven countries: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States have said they will be sharing information related to such threats, including financial information, cyber tactics and procedures, to guide and coordinate actions. Of particular concern to G7 representatives is the fact that criminals often demand ransom payments with virtual assets.

History

Criminals in 2012 gradually started to switch focus from stealing money to demanding a ransom for “kidnapped” data. Financial institutions have been actively combating cyberattacks for a long time. These efforts have several vital results:

  • An increased maturity of financial institutions’ defense systems.
  • Popularity of insurance.
  • Increased competition among hacker groups. It significantly increased the cost of attacks and motivated crooks to look for other victims.

On the other hand, ransomware is a highly marginal business–attackers make at least 9-digit sums annually from victims’ payouts with at least 1000% ROI. Those figures skyrocketed in the last five years and are still growing with insane momentum without a chance to stop in upcoming years.

Like any other business, ransomware creators’ profits equals revenue minus costs. The costs of building and shipping of ransomware are meager. The source code of popular ransomware is either publicly available or costs very little on dark markets. Distribution is very cheap as well. And due to most people having files which they don’t want to lose or expose – tons of photos, corporate files, cryptocurrency wallets, etc., – they ought to pay the ransom.

Infection Taxonomy

Typical ransomware software spreads via four channels:

  1. Unpatched security vulnerabilities in victims’ software. These regularly are most dangerous because some vulnerabilities even don’t require any interaction from victims. For example, an exploit called Eternalblue, developed by NSA and leaked later by an anonymous group, just needed a victim to be connected to the same Wi-Fi network. It was enough to capture control over any Windows machine if it didn’t receive the last software update from Microsoft.
  2. Emails with malicious attachments. Usually, it’s an unexpected letter that mimics some legitimate service or person: a new tool from a tax agency to calculate taxes, a password recovery procedure from Google, or a job description in Microsoft Word document from an HR manager. After you open the attachment, the rest is a matter of time.
  3. Cracked software. There are no good guys who crack software for free, so almost all cracked software has backdoors, which authors later resell on the dark market.
  4. “Man in the middle” attack. Some websites don’t provide SSL encryption, so attackers can add arbitrary software on these websites and stay unnoticed. For example, Bad Rabbit ransomware embedded a fake Adobe Flash player and gained full control of a computer after installing.

Why People Can’t Tackle This Issue And How To Fix It

I outline two factors that affect this issue: lack of basic cybersec knowledge and lack of motivation to apply these rules “in the wild.” The former includes simple rules:

  • Update apps and operating system within the first seven days after a release.
  • Don’t use cracked software and install apps only from a native app store.
  • Train yourself to spot phishing emails. There are many articles and quizzes on the internet on how to accomplish it.
  • Use binary whitelisting software like Google Santa on macOS and AppLocker on Windows. Even if you accidentally try to run ransomware on your computer, the binary whitelisting app will prevent it from happening and would ask you to add this app to exceptions.

The challenge is to use these rules all the time. People don’t get hacked every day, so they start to think, “OK, I can ignore these rules for a while; I have a job to do right now!” and stay exposed to hackers for days or months. The trick is that we don’t know when we’ll face an attack, so it’s crucial to follow the rules strictly.

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Author: Tim Ismilyaev

CEO & Founder of the cybersecurity company Mana Security.



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Ultimate Online Trading Solution for Anyone

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Tradelax offers a wide array of tools. Customers can access more than 200 financial instruments and trade stocks, commodities, currencies, and indices.

Within the last 30 years, the financial industry has become the fundament of global economics. Trading futures and stocks assist organizations in creating additional sources of revenue for innovation and expansion. The development of the Internet allows anyone who has a computer to engage in trading without any limitations. However, it’s worth remembering that online trading is inevitably interconnected with certain risks, including scams, private data exposure, and fraud. How to avoid all of them? Well, first of all, you’d need to choose a reliable trading platform. Fortunately, we can suggest one – Tradelax. This article will provide a detailed Tradelax review.

Why Choose Tradelax?

Tradelax is the ultimate solution for anyone willing to engage in online trading. There’s no need to possess any experience in the financial industry to join. Tradelax offers guidance and training to all customers, and they can receive an overview of the platform fast and conveniently. There’s a whole team of employees dedicated to training newcomers; so, you’ll surely find assistance when needed.

As the leading trading platform, Tradelax offers a wide array of tools. Customers can access more than 200 financial instruments and trade stocks, commodities, currencies, and indices. All prices are updated based on live feeds from global stock exchanges. So, Tradelax’s clients are provided with the most accurate information. The platform offers a comprehensive solution for managing your portfolio, purchasing or selling assets, and receiving professional training.

It would be impossible to receive profits from trading without a proper market overview. Tradelax knows about this necessity, so, it has designed a convenient Stock Screener tool. It was created to assist both newcomers and experienced traders in reaching their goals. Stock Screener allows you to filter out stocks and companies in the most convenient way and obtain the needed data about any particular organization. There’s also a possibility to arrange companies by market capitalization, growth rates, or receive the highest/lowest market values of stock for a given period.

Technology and Security

When it comes to online trading, security is the ultimate consideration. Since you’ll be providing the platform with a set of personal information, it must do everything it can to protect the customers’ data. Tradelax recognizes the importance of proper security measures. So, it has implemented a comprehensive set of policies. You can actually see a proof of the site’s reliability right in your browser. In the URL typebar, there is a lock symbol, which suggests that the connection is protected by 128-bit SSL encryption. Through clicking on the lock, you can obtain the details of a digital security certificate issued to Tradelax. This information provides a clear answer to “Is Tradelax a scam?” once and for all.

Types of Accounts Offered by Tradelax

All Tradelax reviews mention a wide range of account types that were designed to suit every customer’s needs:

  • Starter. This account would perfectly suit the needs of newcomers. It doesn’t involve any deposit fees or up-front commissions, allowing you to explore the market without limitations. You’ll also be provided with a personal account manager and a bonus policy.
  • Advanced. This type is for more experienced traders who have already attained some knowledge of the market. The advanced account includes all features of the Starter pack while adding access to education tools, regular market update emails, and a 25% discount on swaps.
  • Expert. Expert account owners are provided with assistance from a senior account manager and receive live updates on the most important news. This account also allows hedging and including a fixed spread option, alongside advanced training from an experienced consultant.

What Else You Should Remember about Tradelax

You can leave all your worries aside. Tradelax.com is not a scam. The company is a trustworthy online trading platform, and it possesses all the necessary certificates.

And you can join the platform absolutely for free. There are no deposit fees charged for setting up an account.

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Global Family Office Summit Takes Place Virtually With Key Highlights Including Education, Trust, and Responsibility

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The Global Family Office Summit that took place via Zoom platform on October 20 brought together key players to discuss issues that high value investors are willing to address.

Its primary outlined mission is to connect different disruptive tech leaders from all over the world, hence solve the world’s challenges using technology especially blockchain, cryptocurrency and artificial intelligence. Being the first time the event was held, and specifically virtually due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, GDA group is looking forward to many more successful events and fruitful opportunities.

The GDA group, dubbed a financial institution that is largely focused on disruptive technologies, came up with the noble idea of bringing together not only influential tech leaders but also high net worth individuals interested in the tech space.

Notably, the GDA group is the company behind GDA Capital and also Secure Digital Markets. Whereby the latter is a capital markets firm that is focused on merchant banking especially for digital assets. In addition, Secure Digital Markets is also a trading platform that has processed over $2 billion in OTC digital assets. Hereby making it a vital corporation in the crypto industry with its investments backed by institutions and wealthy individuals.

Details of The Global Family Office Summit

During the virtual event, various speakers got a chance to highlight their minds. In general, the summit identified that the industry has to invest more in education, trust between customers and services providers and responsible firms.

“The Global Family Office Summit has identified three pillars – education, trust and responsibility to give back,” said Michael Gord, one of the event organizers from GDA capitals.

According to Candace Johnson, a serial entrepreneur and key speaker during the event, she thinks the blockchain technology should be used to build a better world instead of seeing it as a disruptive technology. She noted:

“Data-driven algorithmic technologies are responsible for today’s digital transformation in almost all fields, from hard sciences, to social sciences, to the humanities, as well as in a variety of sectors, from health and commerce, to education, law and the arts.”

Another key speaker who participated in the event was AI Burgio, founder of DigitalBits. According to Burgio, investors should identify an opportunity to address a large-scale problem. Nicholas Verwilghen, one of the speakers noted that secure custody of assets and alternative niche projects is what will drive institutional investors crypto adoption. Other key points were discussed during the event that are expected to drive the creation of the next tech unicorn with the latest technology especially in blockchain and AI.

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A financial analyst who sees positive income in both directions of the market (bulls & bears). Bitcoin is my crypto safe haven, free from government conspiracies.
Mythology is my mystery!
“You cannot enslave a mind that knows itself. That values itself. That understands itself.”



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Stablecoins went wild in the days before Bitcoin’s recent surge

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In the days preceding Bitcoin’s latest rise in price, stablecoins went wild, exhibiting some largely unprecedented behavior.

Stablecoins: all stablecoins inflow transaction and address count of all exchanges. Source: CryptoQuant.

On October 18, stablecoins moving to exchanges reached record highs of 60,000 and 56,000 respectively, according to data from CryptoQuant. The outlet’s data tracked USDT on Ethereum, PAX, USDC, TUSD, DAI, SAI, BUSD, HUSD and USDK. When it comes to the total inflow of all stablecoins in terms of the dollar value, no extraordinary trends were detected.

Stablecoins inflows to exchanges. Source: CryptoQuant.

CryptoQuant CEO Ki Young Ju told Cointelegraph that, although the inflows were not huge in terms of dollar value, they signified a bullish trend among retail investors:

“Depositing from more retail investors usually means the market sentiment is turning into bullish.”

Ju believes that the market’s high address and transaction count indicates that inflows were coming from a large number of retail investors rather than from a few large players. The assumption is that investors send stablecoins to exchanges when they plan to convert them to other crypto assets — primarily Bitcoin. Yesterday, Tether minted 450 million USDT on the Tron (TRX) network. The company’s CTO Paolo Ardoino clarified earlier that the amount was authorized, but not issued:

“PSA: 300M USDt inventory replenish on Tron Network. Note this is a authorized but not issued transaction, meaning that this amount will be used as inventory for next period issuance requests.”

Tether market capitalization 2020. Source: CoinMarketCap.

Tether’s market capitalization quadrupled in 2020, beginning the year with $4 billion and rising to $16 billion at time of publication. Meanwhile, Bitcoin balances on major exchanges fell below 2.5 BTC for the first time in years.





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