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10/01/2021
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A federal plan to force phone carriers to improve authentication. Hackers infiltrated Neiman Marcus to compromise data on millions. And forensic investigators probe the source of racist emails targeting higher education. This is CyberScoop for October 1, 2021.

FCC wants to force phone carriers to guard against SIM-swapping scams

The Federal Communications Commission proposed rules Thursday aimed at curbing the threat of attacks in which cybercriminals use a victim’s personal information to steal their phone number and swap it into a scammer-controlled device, a technique known as “SIM-swapping” or “port-out fraud.” Specifically, the proposed rule would amend the rules regarding porting numbers from one account or phone to another to include a requirement that carriers “adopt secure methods of authenticating a customer.” Scammers can use such access to reset or take over other accounts, including social media profiles or financial accounts. Tonya Riley digs in.


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Neiman Marcus alerts 4.6 million customers about May 2020 data breach

Retailer Neiman Marcus is notifying some 4.6 million customers that their information was compromised in a May 2020 data breach, the company said. The Dallas-based chain announced Thursday that hackers accessed user names and passwords, as well as security questions and answers associated with consumer accounts. The luxury fashion chain, one of the largest in the U.S., forced password changes for customers who did not reset their credentials following the incident, and is working with the security firm Mandiant to investigate the matter. Jeff Stone has the news.


UMass hires digital forensics firm to investigate racist emails

Officials at the University of Massachusetts Amherst said this week that they’ve hired a cybersecurity firm to aid in an investigation into a recent spate of racist emails sent to members of campus organizations led by Black students. In a campuswide message, Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy wrote that the school has retained Stroz Friedberg Digital Forensics, a digital investigations firm, to determine the source of emails that began appearing in late August. The emails, which were sent from an account calling itself the “UMass Coalition for a Better Society,” contained racial slurs, accused Black students of having lower intelligence, told recipients to leave campus and that they should be sterilized. Benjamin Freed looks closer at EdScoop.


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