March 20th, 2013
10:43 PM ET

S. Korea: Hacking traced to IP address in China

The suspected cyber attack that appeared to target South Korean banks and broadcasters Wednesday originated from an IP address in China, South Korea's Communications Committee said in a statement Thursday.

The attack damaged 32,000 computers and servers of media and financial companies, the committee said.

South Korean officials are analyzing the cause and are working to prevent any further damage, the committee said.

The attack infected banks' and broadcasters' computer networks with a malicious program that slowed or shut systems down, officials and the semiofficial Yonhap News Agency said.

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Filed under: China • Media • North Korea • Security breaches • South Korea • Technology
February 22nd, 2013
07:56 PM ET

Microsoft: Computers hacked as at Apple and Facebook

Microsoft was hacked much like Facebook and Apple, the technology company announced today on its security blog.

Microsoft said that its investigators "found a small number of computers, including some in our Mac business unit ... were infected by malicious software using techniques similar to those documented by other organizations."

Apple said Tuesday that some of its employees' computers were compromised, and Facebook revealed a similar breach weeks earlier.

Read more about Apple, Facebook hacks

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Filed under: Apple • Facebook • Microsoft • Security breaches
Pinterest content-sharing site is hacked
Pinterest is a content-sharing site on which users can show whatever they want to share.
February 22nd, 2013
06:52 PM ET

Pinterest content-sharing site is hacked

Pinterest said Friday in an e-mail to its users that the pinboard-style photosharing social network site was breached via its vendor Zendesk.

"We recently learned that the vendor we use to answer support requests and other emails (Zendesk) experienced a security breach," said the content-sharing service. Users "pin" images and videos to their pinboards.

"We're sending you this e-mail because we received or answered a message from you using Zendesk. Unfortunately your name, email address and subject line of your message were improperly accessed during their security breach."

Report: Eastern European gang hacked Apple, Facebook, Twitter

Security experts: Times hacking story a wake-up call

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Filed under: Security breaches • Social media • Technology
February 1st, 2013
11:04 PM ET

Twitter hacked; 250,000 accounts affected

Twitter is coming forward as the latest site to be hacked. The social network said in a blog post Friday afternoon that approximately 250,000 user accounts were potentially compromised, with attackers gaining access to information including user names and email addresses.

The company first detected signs of an attack earlier in the week, which led to an investigation and the discovery of a larger breach.

"This week, we detected unusual access patterns that led to us identifying unauthorized access attempts to Twitter user data. We discovered one live attack and were able to shut it down in process moments later," said Bob Lord, Twitter's director of information security, in a post. "However, our investigation has thus far indicated that the attackers may have had access to limited user information."

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Filed under: Security breaches • Technology • Twitter
New York Times says Chinese hackers broke into its computers
January 31st, 2013
03:12 AM ET

New York Times says Chinese hackers broke into its computers

The New York Times says that Chinese hackers have carried out sustained attacks on its computer systems, breaking in and stealing the passwords of high-profile reporters and other staff members.

According to The Times, one of the biggest and most respected U.S. newspapers, the attacks took place over the past four months, beginning during an investigation by the newspaper into the wealth reportedly accumulated by relatives of the Chinese premier, Wen Jiabao.

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Filed under: China • Security breaches • Technology
South Carolina taxpayer server hacked, 3.6 million Social Security numbers compromised
October 26th, 2012
07:56 PM ET

South Carolina taxpayer server hacked, 3.6 million Social Security numbers compromised

The Social Security numbers of millions of South Carolinians, as well as credit and debit card information for hundreds of thousands, have been hacked in what the state's governor described Friday as an international cyberattack.

"This is not a good day for South Carolina," Gov. Nikki Haley told reporters.

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Zappos.com hacked; 24 million customers affected
Zappos.com is asking its 24 million customers to reset their passwords.
January 16th, 2012
07:45 AM ET

Zappos.com hacked; 24 million customers affected

Online retailer Zappos.com is asking its 24 million customers to reset their passwords after a cyberattack, according to a posting on the company's website.

"We were recently the victim of a cyber attack by a criminal who gained access to parts of our internal network and systems through one of our servers in Kentucky," says the posting, which was sent out as an e-mail from company CEO Tony Hsieh to Zappos employees on Sunday.

The company said it had expired and reset customers' passwords and would be sending an e-mail with further instructions to all its customers. It also posted password reset instructions on its website.

Zappos said that hackers gained access to customers' names, e-mail addresses,  billing and shipping addresses, phone numbers, and the last four digits of credit card numbers and encrypted passwords.

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December 29th, 2011
02:46 AM ET

Stratfor delays launch of website, offers identity monitoring to hack victims

tratfor, a global intelligence company, is delaying the launch of its website following an apparent computer hack that saw the release of subscriber credit card information.

"As part of our ongoing internal investigation, we have also decided to delay the launching of our website until a thorough review and adjustment by outside experts can be completed," Kyle Rhodes, a Stratfor spokesman, said late Wednesday.

The delay is expected to take about a week, though it could be longer, Rhodes said.

U.S.-based Stratfor, which provides independent analysis of international affairs and security threats and describes itself as a publisher of geopolitical analysis, said it was also providing its subscribers a year of free identity protection monitoring, he said.

The company is working with law enforcement, including the FBI, following the security breach, Rhodes said.

A posting earlier this week on the information-sharing website Pastebin said that Stratfor subscriber data, including information on 4,000 credit cards and the company's "private client" list, had been released. The posting cited AntiSec, a Web-based collaboration with the activist hacking groups Anonymous and LulzSec.

But Anonymous distanced itself from the hack, according to a news release posted on Pastebin.

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Filed under: Security breaches • Technology • U.S. • World
October 14th, 2011
04:32 PM ET

Suspect in celebrity hacker case ordered to Los Angeles

A federal judge ordered the Jacksonville, Florida, man accused of hacking celebrities' online accounts for nude photos and other private information to make his way to a California courtroom on November 1 to answer charges against him, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney's office said.

Christopher Chaney, 35, is accused of hacking into the accounts of more than 50 celebrities, including movie stars Scarlett Johansson and Mila Kunis and singer Christina Aguilera.

A grand jury indicted Chaney on nine counts of computer hacking for gain, eight counts of aggravated identify theft, and nine counts of illegal wiretapping. If convicted of the 26 counts, Chaney would face a maximum of 121 years in federal prison, U.S. Attorney Andre Birotte Jr. said.

The aggravated identity theft charge alone carries a mandatory two-year prison sentence, he added.

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Filed under: California • Celebrity • Crime • Florida • Security breaches • Technology
August 15th, 2011
07:06 PM ET

BART defends cutting cell service to defuse protest

An official with San Francisco's rapid transit system stood by the decision to shut off cell phone service ahead of a protest, not ruling out a similar move in response to a planned demonstration Monday.

The decision drew widespread criticism and stirred the well-known hacking group Anonymous to stage an "operation" Sunday. The group urged those supporting its cause to attend a "peaceful protest" Monday.

The FCC says it is investigating the matter.

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Filed under: California • San Francisco • Security breaches • Technology
August 14th, 2011
05:03 PM ET

Hackers target San Francisco's rapid transit system

Members of a well-known hacking group - according to a statement and Twitter messages - took credit Sunday for an online attack targeting San Francisco's embattled transit system.

This is in response to the system's decision to cut off cellphone signals at "select" subway stations in response to a planned protest last week.

On Sunday afternoon, a link off BART's website to myBART.org apparently had been hacked. It showed a page featuring, among other items, the Anonymous logo - a smirking mask above two crossed swords, all on a black background.

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Filed under: California • San Francisco • Security breaches • Technology
On the Radar: Afghanistan, Huntsman, Greece, summer
A U.S. soldier takes up a position near schoolchildren Tuesday in Afghanistan's Khost province.
June 21st, 2011
08:47 AM ET

On the Radar: Afghanistan, Huntsman, Greece, summer

Afghanistan drawdown President Barack Obama will announce Wednesday how many U.S. troops he'll bring home from Afghanistan when the drawdown begins next month. Obama is expected to announce the approval of a plan that would result in 30,000 U.S. "surge" forces being withdrawn by the end of 2012, an administration official told CNN. There are about 100,000 U.S. troops serving in Afghanistan, including the so-called surge ordered in 2009 in a bid to control violence there.

Huntsman as GOP candidate Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman is set to announce Tuesday his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination. He's a motorcycle-riding Mormon who speaks fluent Mandarin, a soft-spoken father of seven with eclectic political connections. He was ambassador to China for President Barack Obama, whom he once described as a remarkable leader. That could make the primary season difficult for him.

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Arizona • Casey Anthony • China • Greece • On the Radar • Russia • Security breaches • Smoking • Tennis • Volcanoes • War
On the Radar: Debt ceiling, beaten baseball fan, cyber security
Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner has said he can prevent a federal default until August 2.
May 16th, 2011
07:04 AM ET

On the Radar: Debt ceiling, beaten baseball fan, cyber security

Debt ceiling: The federal government reaches its current debt ceiling of roughly $14.3 trillion on Monday, although Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner has indicated in a letter to Congress he can keep the country out of default until August 2.

Analysts warn that a failure to reach an agreement in time to avoid a national default could have devastating consequences. Among other things, Americans could be faced with skyrocketing interest rates and a plummeting dollar which could lead to a higher cost of living.

Republicans are pushing for spending cuts before agreeing to any plan to raise the debt ceiling.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, speaking to CNN's Candy Crowley on Sunday, called on Congress to institute a spending ceiling for the next two years and also address discretionary and mandatory spending and entitlement reforms, including Medicare and Social Security.

He said a deal that receives a positive prognosis from credit rating agency Standard & Poor's would win his support.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said last week that President Barack Obama has instructed Democrats to get a deal done on the debt ceiling.

Reid said deciding what to cut in the budget will not be easy but he maintained "all options are open."

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Filed under: Baseball • Economy • Politics • Security breaches • Sports • Technology
Foreign hackers breach Canadian government computers
Hackers traced to Chinese servers penetrated two Canadian economic offices, sources told the CBC.
February 17th, 2011
09:25 AM ET

Foreign hackers breach Canadian government computers

Hackers traced to China penetrated two key Canadian economic ministries, gaining access to highly classified information, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reports.

The hackers took over computers in the executive offices of the Finance Department and the Treasury Board, unnamed sources told the network. They then sent fake e-mails to government computer techs and other employees to get them to divulge sensitive passwords in a technique known as executive spear-phishing.

Canadian federal officials disabled the two departments' internet connections for a time to halt any loss of data, CBC reported.

It isn't clear whether other departments were breached or how much data was stolen. Government officials aren't talking about the attack, which occurred in January.

The source of the hack was traced to servers in China, but that doesn't mean the hackers were Chinese, the sources told CBC. They could have routed their paths through China to hide their identities, the sources said.

The pattern of the attack mirrors the GhostNet blitz that  hacked 100 other governments in March, according to the tech publication The Register.

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Filed under: Canada • Crime • Espionage • Security breaches • Technology
Michigan man could serve 5 years for reading wife's email
December 28th, 2010
07:42 PM ET

Michigan man could serve 5 years for reading wife's email

For a Michigan man, reading his then-wife's email account was not only eye-opening, it may be criminal, according to prosecutors in Oakland County, Michigan.

Leon Walker, 33, is charged with a felony after accessing his spouse's Gmail account, according to the Detroit Free Press.

While the case may seem like a legal gray area, prosecutors are going after Walker based on a Michigan statute usually used in identify theft cases, the Free Press reported.

"This is one of those cases where it seems the facts aren't in dispute," John R. Levine, an expert on cybersecurity and co-author of  "Internet Security for Dummies," told CNN Tuesday.

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Filed under: Google • Michigan • Security breaches
Data on 760,000 at risk after university's server hacked
December 16th, 2010
09:09 AM ET

Data on 760,000 at risk after university's server hacked

Someone hacked into a computer server at The Ohio State University, putting 760,000 people's personal data at risk, the university said Wednesday.

The server that was illegally accessed contained names, addresses, Social Security numbers and dates of birth for current and former students, faculty members, staff, applicants, consultants and contractors, the university said.

It doesn't appear that anyone's personal data were accessed, the university said, but Ohio State is providing a year of free credit protection services to those potentially affected.

"We are committed to maintaining the privacy of sensitive information and continually work to enhance our systems and practices to reduce the likelihood of such events occurring," Provost Joseph A. Alutto said on the university's website.

The breach occurred in October, but the university waited for forensic investigators to give their reports and school officials to develop solutions before notifying potential victims and the public, Ohio State's student newspaper, The Lantern, reported.

Those experts, Interhack of Columbus and Stroz Friedberg of New York, determined that the hackers wanted to use the server to launch cyberattacks, not steal identities, the Columbus Dispatch newspaper reported.

The hacked database did not contain anyone's medical information, CNN affiliate WBNS reported.

The university expects the investigation and credit protection services to cost it $4 million, according to the Dispatch.

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Filed under: Ohio • Security breaches • Technology • U.S.