Vigilante Malware affecting 40% of software - Google and Apple Improving Your Privacy
Vigilante Malware affecting 40% of software - Google and Apple Improving Your Privacy
[Weekly Show #1119 2021-06-26] We've got some really cool news that some people have interpreted as bad news. And this has to do with general motors and their hydrogen fuel cell. This is a very interesting story. [00:00:13] I've always been fascinated with the Hindenburg and what happened there. And I did a lot of investigations. And of course the, there was the initial investigation that happened back in 1937. When the Hindenburg actually crash, I found online, you can buy pieces of the Hindenburg online. [00:00:35] There's this kind of an auction house. You can get a small square of the fab. Of the Hindenburgs outer shell for 99 bucks. I found them online. I didn't buy any, although I was thinking, that might actually be cool, but what am I going to do with it? Rights to get on a wall then what w what was interesting about it and about the fabric was what the German engineers had. [00:01:01] Now we know that you can use helium and helium is a great little gas it's inert. It's not going to catch fire. It is also lighter than air. There's a lunch, a lot of others, great properties that has, you can use it for super cooling things that you can't with. Most other gases, helium is much better for super cooling than oxygen is. [00:01:23] And hydrogen is Excel. Helium is getting hard to find the United States had a strategic reserve of helium. Now, to me, that makes sense because we did at one point need helium. We had dirge bubbles. We still do. We still use helium to send weather balloon. Been various other things, but then the federal government decided ELA. [00:01:48] We don't need to keep this reserve anymore. So they sold it off. As of next year, there won't be anything left in that strategic reserve. So where do we get helium? We get it from regular old oil mine. So they drill a hole it's created by the breakdown of various elements in the soil, primarily some of the hard rocks. [00:02:14] And as they break down and decay, they produce helium as one of the byproducts. Now what's been happening in the reason we are in. A helium shortage. Number three in fact, is that we are now fracking. Fracking Lutz is extract a lot more natural gas and a lot more , which is what we're really trying to do and keep some of those costs down. [00:02:44] But it also does not create as much helium and that's. And it's a really big problem when you get right down to it and you're trying to figure out if we're going to fill up a balloon, that's going to go up. What are we going to do now? Approximately a quarter of all of the helium that's news out there goes into these birthday balloons. [00:03:09] Okay. So yeah, it's it's kinda cool, but it's not an absolutely necessary thing, frankly, but it is used in all kinds of other things, including experiments. You remember? I said that helium is used to super cool thing. Think of these massive hydraulic colliders, some of the other experiments that are going on, where we have a magnet. [00:03:37] Now, one of the biggest, most important things we're doing with magnets right now is trying to create a container for nuclear fusion. Now nuclear fusion doesn't have the byproducts of nuclear fusion. Although we've solved most of those vision problems, you don't have this highly radioactive stuff anymore that we used to have in the old reactors. [00:04:01] Although we haven't been building new ones for what, 40 years now. But those particular types of containers, if you will, are built by these big magnets. So these magnets hold it in place. And in order to get the amount of power we need to, to these magnet, we have to super cool them. We have to super cool, the power supplies, and that is typically using helium. [00:04:27] So we've had to shut down some of these experiments. Because we don't have enough helium so much for the strategic reserve, that is almost completely depleted. And by the way, the federal government in its infinite wisdom sold that helium off at a fraction of fair market value. That's a problem because it just went crazy. [00:04:52] People were using it for things that just weren't that important. And now many of our experiments are getting shut down, but in the world war two era and pre-World war II era Germany had a problem trying to get helium itself. Germany doesn't have a whole lot of oil reserves and it had to buy everything. [00:05:12] And the United States really didn't want to sell here. To Germany. So what Germany did and you guys probably all know this from your history lessons, cause you are the best and brightest hydrogen was used. And because hydrogen was used it was a flammable gas. And when there was a spark, when it was trying to land. [00:05:36] It went up, it caught fire. Now what's really interesting is if you look at the pictures that were taken of it burning, there were obviously elements other than hydrogen, because hydrogen burns beautifully pure. You can't really even see it. And what would normally happen is you wouldn't have. Poof. [00:05:58] And the whole thing just burns up. You'd have a hole and that hole be shooting a flame out as it was ignited, right as the hydrogen was ignited and the whole, my discontinue to get a a little bigger until there's no pressurized hydrogen anymore. And the fire's over, but that's not what happened with the Hindenburg. [00:06:18] She caught fire. Because of that spark and it had that spark because of the weather conditions at the time, they just weren't being cautious enough. In fact, that was the very last large dirigible Airship. Ever made, frankly it's crazy, yeah. We got the Goodyear blimp, we got some of these others and they need the helium to fill them up. [00:06:43] And then over time it was kinda like a swimming pool. You filled it up and you, all you have to do is just add a little bit more now, and then you don't have to, because of leakage, you don't have to completely refill it all of the time. So what ended up happening is they had hydrogen on board. [00:07:02] Had the spark started a flame and then the cloth material that coated this massive container holding all of the hydrogen caught fire, but it didn't just catch fire. What happened was it caught fire and. It burned very quickly because effectively the entire outside surface of the Hindenburg was coated with rocket fuel. [00:07:30] Some of the same components that go into gunpowder aluminum powder, which gave it that kind of silver shine. They really messed up. So people are looking at what is happening now with general motors. Tech fuel cell technology and other a little bit worried because this technology was developed for cars. [00:07:51] It is being used in some parts of the world, in some parts of the country. I know California has some hydrogen cars on the road with a fuel cell. Now they're not burning hydrogen. In order to transport the car, they're actually allowing a chemical process to occur. So the hydrogen atom is attracted to the oxygen atom and they use a membrane so that they're trying to get together. [00:08:18] And that's what produces electricity. And then what is the result when you have two hydrogen atoms and an oxygen atom and they combine H two O so the only. Final end product here coming out of that car is pure. Which is cool. So GM says wait a minute. Now we have this technology, why don't we try and make airplanes a little bit more efficient? [00:08:45] And so they're saying you don't, you're taking off with two tons of water on board. How about we put a hydrogen fuel cell in there. You will be well to generate electricity. Now that's a very big deal because now that electricity doesn't have to be generated by the turbines of the gas engine. And on top of it all, you don't have to take off with two tons of water on board because we can generate water as your. [00:09:16] And of course, they're not going to coat it with a rocket fuel. They are going to put it in one of these really cool containers that is considered to be very safe. So it's very cool. So the litmus test, according to our friends over at general motors, he this is a GM executive. Director Charlie frees. [00:09:36] He says our technology can address customer needs in a wide range of uses on land, sea, air, or rail. And this collaboration we could open up new possibilities for aircraft transitioning to alternative energy, power sources. Now I don't expect a plane to be actually flying on this any time soon. [00:09:58]Hydrogen is a great little fuel, but it doesn't provide enough energy to get that jet off the ground at all, but it does provide enough energy to supplement it so good for them. I think this is a good use frankly, of the hydrogen fuel cells, as long as we can avoid it leaking and causing other major problems. [00:10:21] But I think that can be solved. Look at what we've been able to do now. These containers for the pretty much everything that can be hit by a train at full speed and not. So I think we got this covered. All right, everybody stick around. We'll be right back. And we're going to talk about it. A new type of vigilante that you may not have heard of before. [00:10:46] Of course, you're listening to Craig Peterson. Check me out online. CraigPeterson.com. [00:10:52]Well, you probably know again here, because you're the best and brightest, what a vigilante is. Well, I bet you haven't really heard about this type of vigilante before, and it is causing havoc for as many as 40% of computers. [00:11:10]Well, vigilantes have throughout history decided that they were going to take the launch of their own hands. [00:11:16] Now, way back when there wasn't law enforcement, et cetera, that's just what you did. And then we ended up with the tribes and our tribes would decide, okay, what's going to happen to this person. And you know, one of the worst things that could possibly happen way back. Caveman days. And after frankly, the worst thing that could happen to you is getting banished because having a group of people who are living together, cooperating together, working together makes all of the difference when it comes to survive. [00:11:53] And being kicked out of that tribe out of that group meant you had a very low chance of long-term survival. And if you went into another group, they'd really be suspicious about you because where did you come from? Did somebody kick you out because you did something really, really bad? You know, I kind of wonder if that's not deeply ingrained inside of us from all of those. [00:12:19] Centuries millennia with that whole type of process in place where we see someone that's different than us. And we kind of wonder, right. If you think that's where that might've come from. Interesting thought. I don't know that I've ever seen any studies about that. So vigilantes, nowadays are people who they're not going to the chieftain. [00:12:40] They're not going to the local police department or the prosecutor who a, whoever it might be. They are taking the law as it were into their own hands. Now it's not necessarily even the law, they just decide that they want something to happen in a particular way. And by having that happen in that particular way, they now have control. [00:13:06] Right. They're making the law as it were not just enforcing it. We have a lot of malware out there and there's a lot of different types. You might remember what Sony did, Sony. Decided they didn't like people ripping their CDs. And so they went ahead and installed an automatic installer for windows computers. [00:13:29] So if you tried to play your favorite Sony CD, right. Audio CD, listen to some music, it would automatically install some what. You and I would call malware on your computer and it would look at everything you were doing on your computer. To try and make sure that you were not trying to make a copy of the desk, not just a copy, but what we call ripping it. [00:14:00] In other words, you have a CD and you have an MP3 player. How do you get the CD on the MP3 player? Cause you can't just stick it into an MP3 player, so you have to rip it and that converts it from the CD format into an MP3 format. So it's all digital. You can take it away. And I have really griped about the music industry before, because they make way more money off of CDs than they ever did off of records. [00:14:28] Just because of how cheap it is. It costs them like 10 cents, not even to make a CD. And it costs them a couple of bucks to make a record back in the. So they decided they would do digital without thinking twice about while digital means you can a perfect copy, perfect coffee copy of that desk. And so it's only, he said, I'll go, well, here's what we're going to do. [00:14:53] We're going to make this. And so it installed itself. Way down deep inside the operating system. It watched as you loaded up desks and watched what you did that is malware. And that was Sony being frankly, a vigilant. Yeah. They said, Hey, it's for copyright protection, but there was no encryption on CDs. [00:15:16] There still isn't on compact discs. When we're talking about music desks, there is encryption on DVDs and that's what they did in order to say, well, you can't rip it because it's an encryption. Past the digital communications millennial act. And then from that act, they were able to now have controls. Hey, listen, if it's something's encrypted, you can't even try to dig. [00:15:40] Okay. Pretty, pretty big deal. So there's a whole lot to this whole vigilante thing. And someone is added again, in this case, we found a researcher who has found something you just don't really see very often, you know, outside that sone thing, but it's booby trapped file. Yeah, there's these files that are out there on the internet on a bunch of torrent sites and others that are pirated software and they have a booby trap inside. [00:16:18] Now the pirated software is typically things like a Microsoft windows or all of their different software, right word. And you name it all the way across the line. They also, by the way, have put some of this malware into games because there's a lot of people that run games and they grabbed these cracked games from the inside. [00:16:45] So we're talking about boob bootleg talk. And so what this person or people, or whoever it is, is doing according to Sofos labs, principal researcher, his name is Andrew Brandt is get getting these people to install this software that has. A booby trap and that what it does is you think you're just installing the game or whatever it might be. [00:17:15] But in reality, you're installing software that sends. The file name that was executed to an attacker controlled server. So it knows, oh, you're trying to run Microsoft word and it sends along your IP address of your computers. And then what it does is this vigilante software. It tries to modify the victim's computers so they can no longer. [00:17:43] Access some, 1000 other pirate sites, like the pirate bay.com, which is a very popular site out. Oh, out there. So this is obviously not your typical malware, not at all. And they are doing this same type of thing. That's so needed way back in the day, modifying your computer so that you can not do something that may be illegal. [00:18:11] It may be mostly, most of the time, he illegal, hard to say, but in reality, they're modifying it without you knowing. It's a very, very big deal. So people are using software, kind of like this vigilante software to steal stuff. Usually it's passwords, or maybe your keystrokes or cookies or your intellectual property access Eve, the people are even using ad networks, advertising networks to deliver software. [00:18:44] But that will mind cryptocurrency for them. Okay. But those are all theft. That's what the motive is, but not in this case. These samples really only did a few things and none of them follow the motive for malware criminals. It's fascinating. He had a thing that he posted over there on Twitter, kind of talking about it, but once the victims executed this Trojan file, it gets sent out to a server and I'm sure the FBI is tracking down this server. [00:19:16]It's one flourish. She drew.com in pronounceable. And it's it's not the one fee share, which is the name of a Cod storage provider, but it's pretty close to it. And it sends it out. I'm looking at the list of all of these websites that it tries to block by going into your hosts file. But it's an interesting way to approach it. [00:19:41] Isn't it, frankly, by mapping the domains for all of these torrent sites and pirate site. To your local host, the malware is making sure that your computer, I can't access those websites. Okay. Anyways, if it happens to you just go in and edit the host file. It's really quite that simple. All right. Stick around everybody. [00:20:03] But while you're waiting, go ahead, go online, go to CraigPeterson.com. Once you're there. You can easily subscribe to my newsletter and keep up-to-date on everything. CraigPeterson.com. [00:20:18]We've been worrying about what is happening with ransomware with a cyber attacks and where is it coming from? We've got a new study out, did showing that one in five manufacturing companies are not only targeted by cyber attacks, but are getting nailed and getting nailed back. [00:20:38]This is a bigger problem, and I think most of us realize, and I have a few manufacturing clients who have been nailed badly by cyber attacks. Very badly. There is a new study out that looked at this it's called the manufacturing cybersecurity. Index. And this is a report that has the results of surveys of 567 manufacturing employees. [00:21:08] Now that is quite a few and most of these people were in fact, in the it side of things, some of them were specifically in the cyber securities. That one was most interesting about this. Isn't the fact that just that one out of five manufacturing companies is targeted by cyber attacks, but what the response, what the thoughts of these people that run the companies are. [00:21:37] And I say that because I am just constantly amazed at how businesses just are not paying attention to this, and this is proof again, and here's what it is. Information stealing malware makes up about a third of attacks, but companies are worried about what ransomware, the worried about ransomware shutting down production. [00:22:05] That is a very big deal because of course it does, but what is going to hurt you more? And that's what you got to figure out. That's what companies have to really look. These numbers that we're looking at are according to this article I'm reading at a dark reading, which is a great site. If you haven't been there before, and you'd like to follow some of these things in the cybersecurity world, definitely check it out. [00:22:34] Dark reading, very easy to very easy to look at lots of good stuff. But Robert limos is a contributing writer over there. And he's the guy that wrote that. And so he is saying that more than one third of all manufacturing firms are attacked every month. That's absolutely amazing. Now, of course not all manufacturing employees really know when a company is being attacked, but ransomware attacks that they know, because usually that means much of the company is shut down when it happens. [00:23:12]Because ransomware attacks have this major impact on the business and the other types of attacks. information most of the time companies never find out unless it's too late again, it's usually ransom or extortion. They're two sides of the same coin. So an extortion attack might be where they get onto a network. [00:23:37] Exfiltrate data. And then they say, Hey, listen, we've got all of this data. Do you want us to post your bank, account numbers, customer information, your intellectual property, your plans, whatever it is, you want us to post them online? Huh? And if not pay out. Okay. So this is, I think a very big problem. [00:23:58] There are major blocks between it information technology and security teams. And I...