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Hackers Probing Financial System’s Defenses Show Why Everyone Should Worry

Hackers are testing the financial system’s cyber defenses, and they can boast of some alarming success.

Let’s start with what we know. JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) says a breach of its computer systems exposed the personal information of 76 million households and 7 million small businesses. The intrusion lasted from June until sometime in August, so hackers had more than a month to nose around. They accessed names, addresses, phone numbers and e-mail addresses, although the bank says there’s no evidence they compromised account information, passwords or Social Security numbers, Bloomberg Markets magazine will report in its December issue.

And keep in mind: JPMorgan is a giant, profitable bank with a reputation as one of the best companies in the world at cybersecurity.

Even more worrisome is what we don’t know -- about the intrusion at JPMorgan, the hackers who did it and the potential vulnerability of the entire financial system. The bank has said little publicly about the breach beyond its description of the customer information that was and was not compromised and an assurance the company is cooperating with government investigations. U.S. intelligence agencies, federal prosecutors and attorneys general from at least two states have all launched probes. More...

11-02-2014 16:43

FBI Warns Tech Companies of State-Sponsored China Hackers

Hackers affiliated with the Chinese government have heavily targeted makers of microchips, computer networking equipment and data storage services to steal company secrets, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said.

The FBI sent a warning to companies yesterday, telling them that “these state-sponsored hackers are exceedingly stealthy and agile” and have used customized malicious code that was undetected by security researchers and law enforcement. More...

10-17-2014 15:39

JPMorgan Password Leads Hackers to 76 Million Households

Hackers exploited an employee password to crack a JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) server and ultimately pull off one of the largest cyber-attacks ever, accessing data on 76 million households and 7 million small businesses.

JPMorgan, the largest U.S. bank, outlined the scope of the previously disclosed breach yesterday, reassuring clients there’s still no evidence account numbers and passwords were compromised, even as names and contact data were exposed. People who logged on to certain websites or mobile apps had contact information stolen, the New York-based company said.

The bank has been struggling to head off damage since the incident, first reported by Bloomberg News in August. New details on how attackers accomplished the feat over months, including their initial entry, were provided by two people briefed on the investigation, who requested anonymity because it’s private. JPMorgan said the threat now is phishing, in which criminals try to trick people into handing over more valuable data, such as user IDs and passwords. More...

10-03-2014 17:22

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