#CyberFLASH: Forum to focus on cybersecurity needs in US and Canada

GettyImages-556421117BOSTON – Cybersecurity experts are planning to hold a forum on ways the United States and Canada can toughen their online defences.

The discussion will focus on the growing number of lone wolf and foreign government-sponsored cyber-attacks that harm national security and commerce in both countries.

Thursday’s event is sponsored by The New England-Canada Business Council and will include a discussion of strategies needed to stem the tide of cyber-attacks — particularly those by crime syndicates, rogue nations, terrorist groups and individual hackers.

Organizers of the forum say the attacks disrupt the free exchange of information on the Internet and undermine business transactions.

One of the biggest cyber thefts on record was by an Eastern European crime organization that investigators say raked in $300 million from stolen credit card numbers.

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#CyberFLASH: Ottawa bitcoin exchange defrauded of $100,000 in cyber currency

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An Ottawa-based bitcoin exchange has been defrauded of more than $100,000 worth of the cyber currency in a heist that was anything but sophisticated.

The Ottawa police are investigating an Oct. 1, 2013, incident at Canadian Bitcoins, when someone opened an online chat session with a technical support worker at Granite Networks, now owned by Rogers Communications, and claimed to be Canadian Bitcoins owner James Grant.

He claimed to have a problem with a server and asked the attendant to reboot it into recovery mode, allowing him to bypass security on the server.

“It’s ridiculous,” said the real James Grant when asked about the incident. “There was absolutely zero verification of who it actually was.”

According to a text copy of the chat session obtained by the Citizen, at no point during the nearly two-hour-long conversation was the caller asked to verify his identity. After being asked, the technical support worker gained access to Grant’s locked server pen, plugged in a laptop and then manually gave the fraudster access to Canadian Bitcoins servers, where he cleaned out a wallet containing 149.94 bitcoins, valued at around $100,000.

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Cyber heist: Thieves drain ATMs from Canada, 26 other countries of $45 million

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NEW YORK — The sophistication of a global network of thieves who drained cash machines around the globe of an astonishing $45 million in mere hours sent ripples through the security world, not merely for the size of the operation and ease with which it was carried out, but also for the threat that more such thefts may be in store.

Seven people were arrested in the U.S., accused of operating the New York cell of what prosecutors said was a network that carried out thefts at ATMs in 27 countries from Canada to Russia. Law enforcement agencies from more than a dozen nations were involved in the investigation, U.S. prosecutors in New York said Thursday.

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