cyber security

Essential Pittsburgh
2:59 pm
Mon November 10, 2014

The Blurred Line Between Cyber Crime and Cyber Terrorism

Credit Gflores / wikipedia

Tribune-Review reporter Andrew Conte joins us to discuss how the lines between online thefts and all-out warfare continue to blur as hackers become more effective at attacks that threaten to cause serious economic damage.

Last week the Department of Homeland Security issued a bulletin to cyber security insiders reporting that a destructive malware program known as "BlackEnergy" has been placed in key U.S. infrastructure systems.

We discuss this and other cyber crime issues Conte has investigated for his special series, Cyber Rattling: The Next Threat

Essential Pittsburgh
2:34 pm
Thu August 28, 2014

Cyberattacks Under Investigation

U.S. Attorney David Hickton being interviewed by guest host Andy Conte on Essential Pittsburgh
Credit Margaret Philbin

U. S. Attorney David Hickton’s interest in cyber crimes is getting noticed by the Justice Department. Hickton and his team have investigated the Pitt bombing threats and the PNC denial of service attacks. Their recent work has resulted in the indictment of Chinese military hackers. David Hickton joins us to explain why the Western PA Attorney’s office could be a model for cyber crime units across the country.

With new reports of cyber crimes targeting JP Morgan Chase and other financial institutions, Hickton talks about how we can protect ourselves from hacking.

Essential Pittsburgh
2:54 pm
Fri August 8, 2014

Reporter Andrew Conte On Why Russian Hackers Are a Big Problem for the US

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reporter Andrew Conte recently wrote about Russian hackers and the problems with stopping them from committing cyber crimes.
Credit Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

This week Russian hackers reportedly stole 1.2 billion internet credentials from major U.S. companies and others around the world in what may turn out to be the biggest data breach ever. The hackers stole usernames and passwords from 420,000 websites that range in size and popularity.

Tribune-Review reporter Andrew Conte covered cyber crimes by Russians earlier this summer and said what’s surprising is these data breaches happen all the time.

“We had a story the other day about different Russian hackers," Conte said. "One guy had 600 million credit cards that he had stolen and was selling. The U.S. government figured, ‘Well, $500 per credit card, $300 million in damages,’ but the fact is, it could have been much, much more than that.”

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Government & Politics
4:38 pm
Mon June 2, 2014

Pittsburgh Officials Indict International Cyber-Criminal

Evgeniy Bogachev was last known to reside in Anapa, Russia and is believed to be a flight risk.
Credit Courtesy U.S. Department of Justice

Law enforcement officials in Pittsburgh had a major hand in bringing down an international ring of cyber criminals, according U.S. Attorney David J. Hickton.

The indictment, unsealed Monday, names Russian citizen Evgeny Bogachev as one of five defendants, charged with conspiracy, computer hacking, wire fraud, bank fraud and money laundering. The indictment alleges that Bogachev was the mastermind behind two malware programs that infected the computers of as many as one million people worldwide, 25 percent of whom were in the United States.

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Essential Pittsburgh
4:16 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Indictment of Chinese Hackers Marks A New Way to Prosecute Cyber Crime

Credit lizzardo / Flickr


An indictment out of Western Pennsylvania charges five military officers in the Chinese People’s Liberation Army with directing a conspiracy to steal information from Pittsburgh based organizations.

According to the indictment, the six organizations victimized include U.S. Steel, Westinghouse, Allegheny Technologies Incorporated, Alcoa, Solar World and the United Steelworkers International Union. The charges were announced Monday in Washington by US Attorney General Eric Holder and David Hickton, US Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania.

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Essential Pittsburgh
7:22 pm
Mon January 13, 2014

The Larger Implications of the Target Data Breach

Target was hit by a security breach over the holiday shopping season that has affected over 100 million people and is just beginning to feel the negative effects of the breach.
Credit j.reed / flickr

The massive data breach that occurred at Target stores at the beginning of the holiday season was thought to affect 40 million customers.

With estimates expanded Friday to more than 100 million, it’s believed that names, mailing addresses, phone numbers and email addresses have been compromised along with credit and debit card numbers.

The questions now are, "Is this attack different than other security breaches?" and "What should a person do who has been affected by this type of a security breach?" Answering these questions are Andy Tornasi, a Federal Project Manager for Tiversa, and Orion Czarnecki, a Cyber Forensic Analyst at Tiversa.

Tornasi says this breach is different from any case he has dealt with in the past.

“This is the first time that I ever heard of malware affecting the point of sale for a particular store."

Czarnecki has this advice for those who were affected by the Target breach or the recent breach at Neiman Marcus stores.

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Essential Pittsburgh
6:26 pm
Mon June 10, 2013

Cyber Security Basics: Assume That Private Communication Is Never Private

Mark Wuegler is senior security researcher at Immunity Inc. A cyber security firm
Credit Michael Sias / Immunity Inc.

Edward Snowden is the source of leaks of government surveillance programs within the United States. Which have raised questions about our privacy and how much information the government is gathering about us by phone and on the internet. 

Mark Wuergler, Senior Security Researcher for the cyber security firm Immunity, says the NSA has the means and motive to spy on anyone. We'll talk with him about the NSA and security.

The government has been watching ever since the NSA was created. They've been finding and trying new ways of watching and listening and recording. And they're really good at it.