Feds seize 'largest ever' haul of crypto-dosh from terrorists – including coins from 'fake' pandemic mask web store

Plus: Someone's gunning for Mac developers


In brief The US Department of Justice said a combined operation has led to its largest seizure of terrorist-owned cryptocurrency, taking around $2m (£1.5m) from Hamas’s military wing, al-Qaeda, and Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS).

In addition to the seized accounts, prosecutors filed indictments against a pair of men based in Turkey who were said to be overseeing the fundraising online.

While most of the accounts were funded by straightforward donation pages, asking visitors to contribute to murderous causes, one of the sites run by the group was, according to the Feds, actually a fraud operation. Posing as a medical mask and PPE supplier, the site claimed it sold watchdog-approved face masks, of which it had "unlimited" quantities; prosecutors said it was a con. The operation converted its sales into crypto-coins that were sent to ISIS.

Uncle Sam said the seized coins will be sent to a fund established for the victims of terrorist attacks.

And here, we see the rare wild Mac zero-day exploit

The team at Trend Micro has spotted something you don't see every day: malware for macOS exploiting zero-days.

The two flaws, neither of which seem to have a CVE assignment yet, are not too serious. One allows for the theft of cookies, and the other is a cross-site scripting error present in the developer version of Safari. The attack, meanwhile, seems to be very specifically targeted: the malware looks to spread through Xcode projects and then executes the exploit code and installs payloads when a project is built.

It's pretty clear that miscreants are going after developers, though the Trend team can't really say who exactly was in the cross-hairs here, or why.

Alexa, can you get me completely pwned?

The team at CheckPoint said it uncovered a flaw in Amazon's Alexa that cold have been abused to take over victims' home assistant.

"Our findings show that certain Amazon/Alexa subdomains were vulnerable to Cross-Origin Resource Sharing (CORS) misconfiguration and Cross Site Scripting," explained Checkpoint. "Using the XSS we were able to get the CSRF token and perform actions on the victim’s behalf."

The hole could have been exploited to install skills on the Alexa and harvest the device's user information and voice command history. Amazon patched the issue after a tip off from CheckPoint in June.

Struts 2 bugs catch the eye of CISA

The US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency has issued an alert over a pair of potentially serious bugs in older versions of Apache Struts.

The cybersecurity watchdog said the flaws, CVE-2019-0230 and CVE-2019-0233, could allow an attacker to either crash a server or gain remote code execution. Versions 2.0.0 through 2.5.20 are vulnerable.

Fortunately, there is a fairly easy way to protect against attacks. Updating to version 2.5.22 or higher, released last year, will patch both of the vulnerabilities. Apache has more info here.

North Korea's Lazarus Group turns to espionage

It seems the infamous Lazarus crew is expanding its horizons. The North Korean hacking outfit has now been found to be conducting espionage operations on behalf of Pyongyang. Previously, the group was almost exclusively focused on financial crimes.

Security firm ClearSky said Lazarus has been specifically targeting government and defense contractors. "This campaign has been active since the beginning of the year and it succeeded, in our assessment, to infect several dozens of companies and organizations in Israel and globally," said ClearSky. ®

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