NCSC & NCA report, high profile twitter accounts hacked - weekly cyber round up

Friday, March 17, 2017 09:55

Helen Kenny by Helen Kenny

The NCSC and NCA published a report this week, The Cyber Threat to UK Business 2016/17. It outlined current trends, key incidents, future threats and how UK businesses can protect themselves. 

The report is summarised into 5 key points; 

  • The Cyber Threat to UK business is significant and growing; 
  • This threat is varied and adaptable;  
  • The rise of internet connected devices gives attackers more opportunity; 
  • The past year has been punctuated by cyber attacks on a scale and boldness not seen before; 
  • The UK government is committed to making the UK a secure and resilient digital nation. 

One of the scariest findings in the report indicates the increased threat to personal internet connected devices such as smartphones, televisions, and fitness trackers. 

READ MORE: Essential cyber security prevention tips to keep you safe 

Personal devices held to ransom, experts warn

The huge increase in the number of devices which connect to the internet means opportunities for criminals to exploit vulnerabilities in devices, which have limited security built in. 

Incidents of holding people to ransom over access to their personal data, photographs, and emails using ransomware are bound to increase. The malware makes devices unusable and owners are asked to pay a ‘ransom’ for it to be unlocked. 

The report explains that although the data available on such devices may have relatively low value generally, the personal value to the owner could be sufficient enough to force them to pay. 


And what does this mean for customer support? “Ransomware on connected watches, fitness trackers, and TVs will present a challenge to manufacturers, and it is not yet known whether customer support will extend to assisting with unlocking devices and providing advice on whether to pay a ransom.”  

Our advice would be to back up devices as often as possible, to try to limit the impact if your device is hit! 

READ MORE: The most sophisticated phishing emails that beat my spam filter and are sitting in my inbox right now

High profile Twitter accounts hacked  

A number of twitter account including Amnesty International, BBC North America and UNICEF USA have been accessed by hackers who have posted tweets supporting the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. 

The tweets included swastikas and hashtags including #Nazialmanya (Nazi Germany) as well as links to a video of the president Erdogan. 

It is unknown who is behind the hack, which comes amid an escalating row about Turkish officials’ access to the Netherlands. Third Party service Twitter Counter is thought to have been used to get into the accounts. 

Learn more about prevention methods

Posted in Cyber Security, IT and Digital