ATM attacks show cybersecurity holes

Thursday - 7/29/2010, 8:30am EDT

Cybersecurity Update - Tune in weekdays at 30 minutes past the hour for the latest cybersecurity news on The Federal Drive with Tom Temin and Amy Morris (6-10 a.m.) and The DorobekInsider with Chris Dorobek (3-7 p.m.). Listen live at FederalNewsRadio.com or on the radio at 1500 and 820 AM in the Washington, D.C. metro area.

  • A hacker has discovered a way to force ATMs to disgorge their cash by hijacking the computers inside them. The attacks demonstrated Wednesday in Las Vegas targeted standalone ATMs. But they could potentially be used against the ATMs used by mainstream banks. Computer hacker Barnaby Jack spent two years tinkering in his Silicon Valley apartment with ATMs he bought online. His goal was to find ways to take control of ATMs by exploiting weaknesses in the computers that run the machines. He showed off his results at the Black Hat conference, an annual gathering devoted to exposing the latest computer-security vulnerabilities.

  • A security researcher has found Russian cyber criminals using a botnet to produce counterfeit checks. Joe Stewart of SecureWorks says it's a highly automated scheme. The botnet breaks into online services for check archiving and verification. The scammers use the stolen financial information from those services to produce fake checks. Stewart says the crime gang then uses money mules to cash the bogus checks.

  • The Commerce Department wants to hear from the private and academic sectors about their cyber security challenges and strategies. Secretary Gary Locke is using his Internet Policy Task Force to gather best cyber security practices as part of an initiative to maintain growth and innovation on the Internet. In a speech, Locke said security and confidence in the Internet are crucial. Commerce will issue a report to the president on cyber security later this year, reports NextGov. Hear more at 10:05 this morning, when the Federal Security Spotlight will present an interview with Mark Berejka, co-chair of the task force.

Check out all of Federal News Radio's coverage of cybersecurity issues here.