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08/19/2021
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WorkScoop
Researchers caught a scammer trying to carry out a plan that lacked planning. Apple reignites its legal battle against Corellium. And the Census Bureau missed a shot at protecting its systems. This is CyberScoop for August 19, 2021.

Outsourced ransomware operator in-sources

First came ransomware-as-a-service, where ransomware gangs lent their malware to other criminals in exchange for some of the profits. Now, Abnormal Security has found a case of a ransomware operator trying to get a second level of help: The wannabe scammer was asking company personnel to infect their employer for a cut of the ransom. The scammer appeared to be a DemonWare affiliate, and claimed three companies had fallen victim to the scheme. But there were reasons to doubt the claims. Tim Starks goes deeper.


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Apple seeks a court comeback

Apple is appealing part of its lawsuit against security research company Corellium just days after settling what was left of the case. Apple wants the court to reverse an earlier decision that tossed the part of Apple's case alleging Corellium had infringed on its copyright. Experts say that if Apple comes out victorious, it could put a major chill on security research. The company had been trying to build goodwill with researchers after its new system to monitor for child sexual abuse material on user devices stirred concerns. The company says it wants researchers to probe the system, but many argue that trying to shut down Corellium sends the opposite message. Tonya Riley has the latest.


A guilty plea in a crypto-laundering case

A 38-year-old Ohio man has pleaded guilty to his role in a cryptocurrency laundering service that moved some $300 million on behalf of dark web marketplaces and other clients, the Justice Department said Wednesday. Larry Dean Harmon admitted to running Helix, a popular service for concealing the source of bitcoin transactions, from 2014 to 2017. Helix allegedly worked with AlphaBay, a notorious $1 billion marketplace for hacking tools and drugs that security researchers recently warned could be coming back online. Sean Lyngaas has the story.


Census Bureau missed opportunities to avert 2020 cyberattack

The U.S. Census Bureau was slow to report a major cyber breach in early 2020 and missed key opportunities to limit vulnerabilities, according to the Department of Commerce’s Office of Inspector General. An investigation published Wednesday by the oversight body found that the bureau was failing to scan its remote server prior to the cyberattack, and the failure to keep sufficient system logs hindered a subsequent investigation into the incident. John Hewitt Jones looks closer at FedScoop.


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How trust, connection and understanding can shape the future of cyber

Deloitte security advisor Tim Li discusses the recent cybersecurity executive order and how leaders can think about the future of zero trust. Read more from Li.


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