Monthly Archives: January 2021

A Familiar Trojan is Back

If it’s too good to be true, it probably is.

Malware finds its way into just about everything. From online game downloads to e-mail attachments, users are encouraged to be mindful of where the source is coming from. You shouldn’t download unknown software, as the risk of viruses rise.

Just recently, TechRadar shared a returning trojan that was involved in cyber attacks between 2018 and 2020. They stated that ‘DanaBot’ produced no activity for several months. However, lately there has been noticeable schemes from the malware.

“The DanaBot malware works by hiding two stealer components within the software key of pirated tools. The first software key is used to collect browser details, system information, and cryptocurrency wallets from the victim, while the second is used to install a cryptocurrency miner.”

Source: TechRadar

DanaBot distributes its malware software online, impersonating legit games or free downloads. When pursued, the malware gives hackers the opportunity to steal personal information, such as banking credentials.

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Attack on SolarWinds Turns to Malwarebytes

It seems as though we have not seen the last of the attacker, who on December 14th, 2020, breeched the Orion platform in SolarWinds software.

According to Malwarebytes:

“We can confirm the existence of another intrusion vector that works by abusing applications with privileged access to Microsoft Office 365 and Azure environments. After an extensive investigation, we determined the attacker only gained access to a limited subset of internal company emails. We found no evidence of unauthorized access or compromise in any of our internal on-premises and production environments.”

Malwarebytes is a trusted name in cybersecurity. Although they do not utilize SolarWinds software in their company, they and other companies like Microsoft have been affected by it. They thank security companies, such as CrowdStrike and FireEye for their efforts in vividly recounting attacks publicly in hopes to avoid further issues.

Crowdstrike shared that malware coming from activity, called StellerParticle included SUNSPOT. SUNSPOT had been added to certain software builds (such as SolarWinds) as a backdoor. It then acted discreetly while replacing different source files with malware.

“The design of SUNSPOT suggests StellarParticle developers invested a lot of effort to ensure the code was properly inserted and remained undetected, and prioritized operational security to avoid revealing their presence in the build environment to SolarWinds developers.”

Source: Crowdstrike

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Computer Terminology To Know

When it comes to computers, it’s imperative to have a bit of knowledge of its terms and their meanings behind them. While there’s a plethora of hardware and software technology terms to fully comprehend computers as a whole, there are basic acronyms and words to help you better understand your computer. Here are a few:

URL, as we all know is simply a web address. But the acronym is known as Uniform Resource Locator. It can also be known as Universal Resource Locator.

SSH is known as Secure Shell. This protocol gives the administrator secure access and control over their servers over the internet. If unknown sources attempt to hack into the server, the code will jumble up to confuse the source.

ELI5 is an acronym in technology known as “Explain Like I’m 5”. It means to simplify certain complex topics.

BSOD, or Blue Screen of Death is an error that shows up on your monitor as a blue screen. This unfortunate error usually indicates your system has crashed.

IP Address is also known as Internet Protocol Address. This is a series of numbers which are identified to a local network or device. The identification connects to your online activities.

Cache/Cookies seem like intriguing terms for the computer world. They’re not harmful, but these files are created and saved by websites you visit. In addition, the websites can track visits. Thankfully, these cache/cookies can be cleared when certain issues ensue, such as pages not loading.

CPU is the Central Processing Unit that pertains to the memory and control of the computer. This hardware allows the user to utilize the programs and apps installed.

UI, or User Interface, can be applied to a visual display of a computer as a whole (monitor, keyboard, mouse, etc.). It can also mean apps and the internet and how users engage with those products and services.

VPN is also called Virtual Private Networking. This network allows users to acquire privacy while they’re online. It gives security and peace of mind when you are on a public Wi-Fi connection.

OS is known as the Operating System software. For example, Windows 10 and MacOS are both operating systems. The software connects with the hardware, keeping your PC working the best it can for you.

More terminology will be added throughout the year, so check back in!

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Microsoft Adding Features to Taskbar

Features will include weather, stock, and newsfeed

Windows Insiders are testing out the new widgets that will be added to the Windows 10 taskbar in a future update. It’s been a while since any new features had been added to the taskbar, so it will be interesting to see how users respond to it.

Tom Warren from The Verge writes on their blog, “The taskbar feature will pop out into a mini feed of content that can be personalized with the latest sports news, headlines, and weather information. Microsoft is using its Microsoft News network to surface news and content from more than 4,500 sources. The company has been curating this through artificial intelligence in recent months, and this particular feature will also learn what news is relevant to you when you dismiss or like stories in the feed.”

Source: Microsoft

It’s also shared that Microsoft Edge browser would be installed. So, if you click on a link on the newsfeed, it will open up the Edge browser for you to read it. You will have the ability to disable the feature, if you would rather.

Note for Windows Insiders: The preview may carry bugs that can affect your device. To become part of the Windows Insiders Program and try out upcoming features before anyone else, sign up here! Be sure to read the Important Notice before agreeing to join, as it adds a variety of risks to your computer.

If you are needing help with computer issues, please give us a call at 1-800-620-5285.  Karls Technology is a nationwide computer service company with offices in many major cities.  This blog post is brought to you from our staff at the Tucson Computer Repair Service. If you need computer repair in Tucson, AZ, please call the local office at (520) 526-9940.