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04/09/2021
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WorkScoop
Rare reporting from the intelligence community delves into deepfakes and disinformation. A cyber-minded senator is trying to protect school exams. And don't miss the latest hacker-on-hacker high jinks. This is CyberScoop for April 9, 2021.

U.S. intelligence report forecasts next 20 years

Over the course of the next two decades, nation-states will see a rise in targeted offensive cyber-operations and disinformation in an increasingly “volatile and confrontational” global security landscape, according to a new U.S. intelligence assessment. The National Intelligence Council’s Global Trends report notes that nation-states will likely favor tools that allow them to operate below the level of armed conflict in order to avoid the geopolitical and resource costs that come with violence and traditional warfare, adding that states can expect more proxies to play a role, as well. Shannon Vavra unpacks the whole thing.


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Testing firm to undergo audit amid security questions

A company whose software has been widely used to administer law school entrance exams during the coronavirus pandemic has agreed to an independent software audit. Alabama-based ProctorU’s web-browser extension software has allowed people across the U.S. to take the LSAT exam from home during the pandemic. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., worried that the same accessibility, if left unsecured, could give cybercriminals a foothold onto test-takers’ devices. Sean Lyngaas has the story.


Stolen credit card hubs Swarmshop, Carding Mafia compromised

Two online hubs for stolen credit cards found themselves on the receiving end of hack-and-leak operations last month. User data from the card store Swarmshop was posted to a different underground forum on March 17, exposing hundreds of thousands of compromised payment card records, security vendor Group-IB said in a report out Thursday. That follows news from last month that another forum, Carding Mafia, had been hacked, also exposing hundreds of thousands of user accounts. Tim Starks recounts the incidents.


Iranian hackers are toying with fake job offers

Suspected Iranian hackers have zeroed-in on a target in Lebanon, according to Check Point research published Thursday. Researchers caught attackers sending an unidentified recipient documents that purported to contain details about job opportunities. The hackers, which Check Point suspects belong to a hacking group known as APT34 or OilRig, have been using a new backdoor to access their targets, according to the researchers. Shannon has this one.


Cybersecurity grants, take two

Rep. Yvette Clarke, the chairwoman of the House Homeland Security Committee’s cybersecurity panel said she will soon reintroduce legislation that would create a robust annual grant program supporting state and local governments. Speaking during an online event hosted by the Cybersecurity Coalition, Clarke said she plans to bring up a new version of the State and Local Cybersecurity Improvement Act, which passed the House last year with large bipartisan support but did not get a vote in the Senate. The new version, she said, will offer $500 million in grants, an increase from the $400 million lawmakers considered last year. Ben Freed has more at StateScoop.


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