It was a Truly wild week in the tech industry as new details emerged about the collapse of cryptocurrency exchange FTX and Elon Musk kicked an ever-growing number of Twitter employees out of the company. Cryptocurrency tracers rushed to understand what happened to nearly half a billion dollars worth of cryptocurrency which was removed from FTX last weekend. It appears some of it may have been seized by Bahamian government authorities, but the mystery continues to unravel.
Meanwhile, the wheels are increasingly coming off the bus on Twitter. Earlier this week, for example, some users were not receiving vital two-factor authentication codes sent via SMS, and it’s not clear if the issue has been fully resolved. With its staff shortages and many upheavals, we took a look at what would be the impacts if Twitter suffered a massive data breach or another major security attack in this precarious moment.
New research indicates that telehealth sites too often jeopardize the data of drug addict patients, with tracking technology lurking on addiction-focused websites. And we have fourth part of the series “The Hunt for the Dark Web’s Greatest Kingpin”, which chronicles the rise and fall of the AlphaBay dark web market. This episode chronicles how law enforcement officers from the Dutch National High-Tech Crime Unit took over and ran the dark web market Hansa and follow US and Thai police as they were closing in on AlphaBay kingpin Alpha02 about to attempt a dramatic arrest.
But wait, there’s more! Each week, we highlight news that we haven’t covered in depth ourselves. Click on the titles below to read the full stories. And stay safe there.
A major hack and leak operation in Moldova has published alleged Telegram correspondence from at least two politicians, leading to a scandal and allegations of corruption. The site, called “Moldova Leaks”, also threatened to release more data on government officials and politicians. The site has published alleged messages from Moldova’s Justice Minister Sergiu Litvinenco and the President’s defense and national security adviser Dorin Recean over the past two weeks. Some of the conversations imply that other Moldovan officials won rigged elections or were improperly installed in office, and the leaks appear particularly aimed at undermining anti-corruption officials. Moldova’s pro-Russian political opposition has been quick to spread allegations based on the leaks that Litvinenco, Recean and others are to be removed from office.
The Moldovan Justice Ministry said the leaked data was stolen, but added that some of it had been manipulated. Litvinenco and other Moldovan government officials said Russia was behind the operation. “The purpose of this fake is to divert public attention from the real problems facing criminal groups in the Republic of Moldova and their links to foreign services,” Litvinenco said. writes on facebook. End of October, The Washington Post reported on efforts by Russia’s FSB security agency to undermine Moldova’s pro-European government.
Google will pay a total of $391.5 million to 40 US states following an investigation related to the tech giant’s user location tracking practices. The investigation, a collaboration between state attorneys general, looked at whether Google misled users and obscured its tracking activities. “Consumers thought they had turned off their location-based features on Google, but the company continued to secretly record their movements and use that information for advertisers,” Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum said. The Washington Post. “We have settled an investigation with 40 US state attorneys general based on outdated product policies that we changed years ago,” Google wrote in a blog post on Monday’s deal. “In addition to a financial settlement, we will be making updates in the coming months to provide even greater controls and transparency over location data.”
Thousands of mobile apps on Google Play and Apple App Store include code modules from a company called Pushwoosh that claims to be based in Washington, DC, but which Reuters says is actually based in Russia. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention incorporated the Pushwoosh code into seven of its public apps and removed the service after learning of Reuters’ findings. The CDC said it was misled about Pushwoosh’s headquarters. In March, the US military also removed an app used by soldiers at a major US combat training base because it incorporated code Pushwoosh. In US marketing materials and regulatory documents, the company claims to be based in California, Maryland or Washington, but it actually pays taxes in Russia and is headquartered in Novosibirsk in Siberia. The company apparently had around 40 employees and reported revenue of 143,270,000 rubles (around $2.4 million) in 2021. While it’s unclear whether Pushwoosh has ever abused its position in applications distributed in the United States or elsewhere, the Russian government has a proven record of “software supply chain attacks” for intelligence gathering as well as destructive attacks against its enemies.
Data and privacy regulators in Norway, France and Germany have all warned that World Cup participants should not download the two Qatar World Cup apps or should do so on a wiped device if necessary. Officials warn that the apps are invasive, collecting far more data than they should and more than they claim in their privacy policies. “One of the apps collects data about whether and with which number a phone call is made,” the German data protection commission said. said in an alert this week. “The other app is actively preventing the device it is installed on from going into sleep mode. It is also obvious that the data used by the apps not only stays locally on the device, but is also transmitted to a central server. The World Cup races start this weekend.