Search Results for “Atlanta Journal-Constitution”

March 27, 2018
Stephen Deere / Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Stephen Deere / Atlanta Journal-Constitution  
City of Atlanta Slowly Reboots Nearly Six Days After Ransomware Attack, Evidence of Earlier Infection Found

Some City of Atlanta employees were able to turn their computers back on nearly six days after a ransomware attack crippled the municipal systems of this major American city. The city’s cybersecurity consultant, Michael R. Cote, President & CEO of Secureworks, said his firm had completed the investigation and containment phase of the attack, which involved a variant of the SamSam ransomware and entailed a ransom demand by the attacker of $51,000 worth of bitcoin. In a separate analysis, Rendition Infosec founder Jake Williams discovered that somehow, in a likely unrelated incident, at least five internet-facing city servers were infected with the NSA-developed DoublePulsar backdoor in late April to early May 2017, more than a month after Microsoft released critical patches to address that vulnerability.

Related: CNBC,, U.S. News, ZDNetCSO Online,, FuturismBlog – WordfenceMalwareJake, TechGenix, eWeek, New York Times

December 6, 2018
Stephen Deere / Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Stephen Deere / Atlanta Journal-Constitution  
U.S. Attorney’s Office Reveals City of Atlanta Did Not Pay Ransom in Last March’s Paralyzing Attack, New Indictments Against Two Iranian Men Handed Down

The City of Atlanta did not pay the requested $51,000 ransom to the two Iranian men accused of paralyzing the city in March with a ransomware attack. The clarification came when the U.S. Attorney’s office announced a new indictment in Atlanta against the two men, Faramarz Shahi Savandi and Mohammed Mehdi Shah Mansouri. U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia, Byung J. “BJay” Pak, said a website the two Iranians had set up for Atlanta to pay the ransom became inaccessible and that no one from the city paid a ransom. The two men were also indicted last week in New Jersey where they mounted a similar attack against the city of Newark in which the city did pay the ransom of roughly $30,000.

November 28, 2018
Ellen Nakashima and Devlin Barrett / Washington Post

Ellen Nakashima and Devlin Barrett / Washington Post  
Justice Department Unseals Charges Against Two Iranian Men for Developing and Deploying SamSam Ransomware Which Crippled Atlanta and Newark City Systems, Six Healthcare Facilities

Marking the first time marks federal prosecutors have charged anyone with developing ransowmare and deploying it themselves as part of a criminal scheme, the Justice Department unsealed charges accusing two Iranian men, Faramarz Shahi Savandi and Mohammad Mehdi Shah Mansouri, two Iranian men with writing their own ransomware, called SamSam, and with hacking into American hospitals, universities, government agencies and the city of Atlanta. The scheme caused more than $30 million in damages, affected 200 victims, and generated more than $6 million in ransom revenues from targeted and sophisticated efforts that focused on attacking the most vulnerable victims, including public agencies, hospitals and schools, including the the City of Atlanta, Georgia and the City of Newark, New Jersey. Six of the victims were healthcare-related facilities which were impaired in providing services to sick and injured people.

Related: Department of Justice, Department of Justice, Technology –, Digital Journal, AJCZDNet Security, Thomas Brewster – ForbesCNET News,,,, Channel News AsiaYahoo! News,, Sputnik International, TechCrunch, Security WeekThe Hacker News, Cyberscoop, AP Breaking News, Voice of America, The VergeThe Hill, Engadget, ReutersThe Hacker News, Naked SecurityMcClatchyDC.comSoftpedia News, – Politics, Daily Beast

Department of Justice: Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein Delivers Remarks at the “SamSam” Ransomware Press Conference
Department of Justice: Two Iranian Men Indicted for Deploying Ransomware to Extort Hospitals, Municipalities, and Public Institutions, Causing Over $30 Million in Losses
Technology – 2 Iranian hackers charged in US ransomware scheme
Digital Journal: US indicts Iranians over hospital ransomware attacks
AJC : BREAKING: Iranians indicted in cyber attack on Atlanta – Atlanta Journal Constitution
ZDNet Security: SamSam ransomware created by Iranian hackers, says US DoJ
Thomas Brewster – Forbes: Iranians Blamed For Massive Ransomware Hacks That Ravaged America And Stole $6 Million
CNET News: US charges Iranian hackers over ransomware attacks on major cities – CNET 2 Iranians Behind SamSam Ransomware Attacks, US Claims DOJ Indicts Two Iranian Hackers for SamSam Ransomware Operation U.S. indicts 2 Iranians for extorting millions from governments, companies
Channel News Asia: US indicts Iranian hackers responsible for deploying ‘SamSam’ ransomware
Reuters: U.S.: U.S. indicts Iranian hackers responsible for deploying ‘SamSam’ ransomware
Channel News Asia : US indicts Iranian hackers responsible for deploying ‘SamSam’ ransomware
Yahoo! News: U.S. indicts Iranian hackers responsible for deploying ‘SamSam’ ransomware Two Iranians Charged in SamSam Ransomware Attacks
TechCrunch: Justice Department indicts two Iranians over SamSam ransomware attacks
Security Week : U.S. Charges Two Iranians Over SamSam Ransomware Attacks (SecurityWeek)
The Hacker News: U.S Charges Two Iranian Hackers for SamSam Ransomware Attacks
Cyberscoop: U.S. indicts two over SamSam ransomware attacks that hit Atlanta, other cities
AP Breaking News: 2 Iranian hackers charged in US ransomware scheme
Voice of America: US Charges 2 Iranian Cybercrminals in Ransomware Scheme
The Verge: Two Iranian men charged with the ransomware attack that took down Atlanta
The Hill: DOJ: Two Iranian hackers charged in SamSam ransomware attacks
Engadget: US charges Iranian hackers over $30 million ransomware spree
Reuters: U.S. indicts Iranian hackers responsible for deploying ‘SamSam’ ransomware
The Hacker News: U.S Charges Two Iranian Hackers for SamSam Ransomware Attacks
Naked Security: Iranian hackers charged in the US for SamSam ransomware attacks 2 Iranian hackers charged in US ransomware scheme
Softpedia News: Iranian Duo Indicted for Running the SamSam Ransomware Operation – Politics: Justice Dept. announces indictment of two Iranians in ransomware scheme
Daily Beast: DOJ Charges 2 Iranian Hackers for Major Ransomware Attack on U.S. Cities

December 17, 2018
Alan Judd / The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Alan Judd / The Atlanta Journal-Constitution  
Investigation Shows That No ‘Cyberattack’ Occurred in Georgia’s Governor Race, Kemp Leveraged Role as Election Overseer to Concoct Charges to Cover For His Failure to Protect Voter System

An eleventh-hour fake “cyberattack” concocted by Republican gubernatorial candidate Brian Kemp, who was also Georgia’s Secretary of State overseeing the election, could have tipped the state’s tight and controversial election in his favor, according to an investigation by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. In reality, Kemp’s office left its voter-registration system exposed online, opening him to criticism that he couldn’t secure an election that featured him in the dual roles of candidate and overseer. Turning his mistake into a political positive, Kemp instead accused Georgia’s Democratic party of a crime of trying to hack into a voter database. The investigation shows that “no evidence supported the allegations against the Democrats at the time, and none has emerged in the six weeks since… It appears unlikely that any crime occurred.”

April 3, 2019
Chelsea Prince Joshua Sharpe / Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Chelsea Prince Joshua Sharpe / Atlanta Journal-Constitution  
Georgia Tech Announces Data Breach Exposing Personal Information of 1.3 Million Current and Former Students, Faculty and Staff Members

Georgia Tech University, well-known for the high-caliber of its computer science program, announced a data breach potentially affecting 1.3 million current and former students, faculty and staff members, its second major personal data security incident in less than a year. The school said it learned in late March that a central database had been accessed by an unknown outside entity and that personal information of the individuals affected was likely exposed. Last July university students were informed that the university mistakenly emailed the personal information of nearly 8,000 College of Computing students to other students. Georgia Tech said it had corrected the flaw leading to the latest breach and is undertaking a forensic examination.

Related: Technology News, Help Net Security, Digital Journal, Infosecurity Magazine, The Daily Swig, Security Affairs, SecurityWeek, WSB-TV, Georgia Public Broadcasting, Fox5 Atlanta, Bleeping Computer

April 5, 2018
David Meyer / Fortune

David Meyer / Fortune  
Sears, Delta Say Some Customers’ Data Were Breached Due to Mutual Third-Party Contractor

Retail chain store Sears and Delta Airlines are facing exposure for some of their customers’ data due to a breach at mutual third-party customer services operation contractor called [24] The contractor said the breach occurred between September 26 and October 12 last year and “potentially [affected] the online customer payment information of a small number of our client companies.” Sears said it believed “less than 100,000” of its customers were likely affected but that customers using a Sears-branded credit card were not impacted. Delta said a “small subset” of its customers were impacted but that no customers’ passport, security and frequent-flyer information had not been included in the breach.

Related: Chicago Tribune, The GateSputnik InternationalThe Huffington Post, Reuters, Atlanta Journal Constitution, CBS 46Information AgeUPI.comFast Company, Daily Mail, [24]7ai Statement, SHC Speaks, New York Post

May 14, 2019
Michael E. Kanell / Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Michael E. Kanell / Atlanta Journal-Constitution  
Equifax’s Costs From Massive Data Breach Top $1.25 Billion So Far

Equifax is still paying out and dealing with the fallout of its massive data breach two years ago when the credit rating giant exposed the personal data of 148 million people. In its earnings report last week, the Atlanta-based credit reporting agency said the May 13, 2017 breach has, thus far, led to about $1.25 billion in tech and security investments. In its first quarter of this year alone, the company took a $690 million charge to cover estimated expenses in the many legal claims Equifax still confronts and spent $786.8 million on technology and business costs related to the breach. Equifax reported a loss of $559 million on revenues of $8.5 billion.

July 1, 2019
Shaddi Abusaid and Jeremy Turley / Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Shaddi Abusaid and Jeremy Turley / Atlanta Journal-Constitution  
Former Equifax CIO Sentenced to Four Months in Prison for Insider Trading Related to Credit Agency’s Massive 2017 Data Breach

Former Equifax international CIO Jun Ying was sentenced to four months in federal prison and ordered to pay about $117,000 in restitution and $55,000 in fines.  for selling his shares in the company just two weeks before the consumer credit reporting agency announced its data was breached in 2017, exposing highly sensitive data on 145 million Americans. Before news of the breach became public to investors, Ying sold $950,000 worth of company shares and avoided a loss of $117,000.

December 26, 2019
Ben Brasch / The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Ben Brasch / The Atlanta Journal-Constitution  
Georgia Supreme Court Rules That Patients of Medical Clinic Hacked by Dark Overlord Can Sue Clinic for Negligence

In a unanimous ruling, the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that the victims of an Athens-area medical clinic, the Athens Orthopedic Clinic, whose computer databases were breached during a ransomware attack, can sue the clinic, potentially setting a precedent that determines recourse for victims of cyberattacks. In June 2016, the Dark Overlord group stole personal data, including Social Security numbers, addresses, birth dates, and health insurance details, from 200,000 of the clinic’s patients in a ransomware attack.  Dark Overlord posted some of the stolen data on a website. Three of the victims claim the clinic was negligent and ask the clinic to pay their legal fees and compensate them for all the credit monitoring they put in place. One of the victims said fraudulent charges were made to her credit card soon after the breach.

August 25, 2019
Mike Baker / New York Times

Mike Baker / New York Times  
Astronaut Accused of Unauthorized Bank Account Access, ‘Identity Theft’ While in Space Amid Marital Conflict

In what may be the first allegation of criminal wrongdoing in space, Anne McClain, a decorated NASA astronaut on a six-month mission aboard the International Space Station admitted she had accessed the bank account of her estranged spouse Summer Worden while in space. The alleged unauthorized access prompted Worden to file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission and her family to lodge one with NASA’s Office of Inspector General accusing McClain of identity theft and improper access to Worden’s private financial records. McClain said she was doing what she had always done, with Ms. Worden’s permission, to make sure the family’s finances were in order.

Related:  The Independent, Irish Times, Quartz, Telegraph, Engadget,,, TIME, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, New York Post, RT News, BBC News, KPRC Houston

Tweets:@laurence_diver @MalwareJake @ICS_SCADA

The Independent : Nasa investigating first ever ‘space crime’ as astronaut accused of committing theft from ISS
Irish Times : How a bitter divorce on Earth led to a claim of crime in space – The Irish Times
Quartz : NASA is investigating what may be the first space crime – Quartz
Telegraph : The first crime in space? Nasa investigates an unprecedented divorce case
Engadget : Divorce dispute leads to accusation of crime in space Anne McClain: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know Potential Malicious Use Of IT By NASA Astronaut While On Orbit: Thought provoking but probably not hacking
TIME: Divorcing Spouse Claims NASA Astronaut Committed Crime in Space: Report
Atlanta Journal-Constitution : Astronaut accused of hacking former spouse’s bank account from space – Atlanta Journal Constitution
Daily Mail : NASA investigates claims an astronaut accessed wife’s bank account from space
Business Insider : An astronaut may have committed the first space crime while aboard the International Space Station – Business Insider
New York Post: NASA astronaut accused of stealing her estranged wife’s identity from space
RT News: NASA astronaut accused of hacking ex-spouse’s bank account from space
BBC News: Nasa said to be investigating first allegation of a crime in space
KPRC Houston: Houston astronaut accused of hacking ex-spouse’s bank account from space

@laurence_diver: NASA said to be investigating first allegation of a crime in space
@MalwareJake: Do our laws cover hacking crimes committed in space? I'm sure some do, but I'll bet there's some legislation that doesn't account for this...
@ICS_SCADA: Who has jurisdiction? Space Marshals or FBI? I didn’t realize that folks had much time on their hands up there. Oh well