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Biden-Putin summit went well, then
Details of 30 servers thought to be used by Russia's SVR spy agency (aka APT29) as part of its ongoing campaigns to steal Western intellectual property were made public today by RiskIQ.
Russia's Foreign Intelligence Service "is actively serving malware (WellMess, WellMail) previously used in espionage campaigns targeting COVID-19 research in the UK, US, and Canada," according to threat intel firm.
"Team Atlas assesses with high confidence that these IP addresses and certificates are in active use by APT29 at the time of this writeup," said RiskIQ in its blog post. "We were unable to locate any malware which communicated with this infrastructure, but we suspect it is likely similar to previously identified samples."
Previously the SVR was linked to the WellMess malware, seen being deployed against Western medical science institutions in early 2020 as nation states raced to develop effective vaccines against COVID-19.
In revealing these 30 servers' IP addresses and details of their SSL certificates, RiskIQ follows the lead of the US CISA infosec agency, which in April told the world exactly what the SVR was deploying and from where, along with offering avoidance advice. The company also highlighted Japan's CERT's uncovering of WellMess as a new malware strain targeting Windows and Linux back in 2018.
- Biden to Putin: Get your ransomware gangs under control and don’t you dare cyber-attack our infrastructure
- Somebody's Russian to meddle with UK coronavirus vaccine efforts, but GCHQ won't take it lying down
- Russian cyber-spies changed tactics after the UK and US outed their techniques – so here's a list of those changes
- Surprise surprise! Hostile states are hacking coronavirus vaccine research, warn UK and USA intelligence
Known to the infosec industry as APT29*, the SVR does not appear to have slowed down since the well-publicised Biden-Putin summit of June, where the American president nicely asked his Russian counterpart to tone it down a bit.
SVR operations against the West have been fairly brazen, with responses varying from quiet warnings through direct attribution to outright "they won't sodding well stop so we're telling you exactly what the naughty buggers have moved onto now" from a fed-up National Cyber Security Centre in the UK. Just for good measure, the GCHQ offshoot also briefed national newspapers in November that they were countering the SVR's continuing efforts to break into British research institutions, hinting they were deploying a form of encryption malware (think ransomware without the ransom) against the Russians. ®
*The SVR is also known as APT29, The Dukes, Cozy Bear, Yttrium, etc. etc. depending on which vendor's marketing team you're listening to that day. They're all the same crew.
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HP Inc slurps Teradici to get better at delivering remote PCs
Apparently quite a few people haven't been in the office as much lately
HP Inc has acquired remote PC specialist Teradici.
Teradici's best trick is PC-over-IP (PCoIP), software that makes PCs remotely accessible by streaming whatever would be on their screens. The company's approach means that no data moves over networks – just bitmaps.
The tech is well regarded and can point to one ringing endorsement as a presence behind Amazon Web Services' "Workstations" desktop-as-a-service product.
'$6 in every $10' spent on cloud infrastructure is with AWS, Microsoft, or Google
Fewer and fewer orgs want to run their own data centre
Spending on cloud infrastructure services shot up by more than a third again as workload migration and cloud native applications development sped up, according to the latest research from Canalys.
After AWS filed its latest set of quarterly figures last night, analysts at the channel focused consultancy confirmed that some $47bn was forked out by biz customers on infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) in calendar Q2, up 36 per cent year-on-year.
The top three cloud providers accounted for 61 per cent of this total expenditure, said Canalys, and AWS was the frontrunner with a 31 per cent share of the spoils, or $14.57bn.
Google picked as yet another 'strategic partner' for SAP's RISE but Microsoft still lingers on the scene
German software giant's relationships are anything but exclusive
SAP has linked arms with Google in the latest dosey doe with the cloud infrastructure market.
Google Cloud and SAP have stepped forward claiming they would "help customers execute business transformations, migrate critical business systems to the cloud, and augment existing business systems with Google Cloud capabilities in artificial intelligence and machine learning."
It's a shame the pair couldn't have squeezed quantum computing into their commentary - The Reg could have called full house in the game of bingo buzzword.
UK regulator waves through SK Hynix's $9bn acquisition of Intel's NAND and SSD biz
Number of 'strong remaining competitors' within the market planning expansions of their own, says CMA
The UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has given the thumbs-up to SK Hynix's agreed $9bn purchase of Intel's NAND and SSD businesses, ruling that the buyout would have no negative impact on local purchasers.
In April, the non-ministerial government department decided to take a further look at the details of the $9bn deal between the South Korean semiconductor biz and Chipzilla that had been agreed last October.
Using its own CMA lingo, the regulator said it wanted to know if the result of the agreement would lead to a "substantial lessening of competition within any market or markets in the United Kingdom for goods or services."
Happy 60th, Sinclair Radionics: We'll remember you for your revolutionary calculators and crap watches
ZX Spectrum was pretty cool too
It is 60 years since the founding of Sinclair Radionics, a forerunner of Sinclair Research and responsible for some nifty calculators and a not-so-nifty watch.
The company was founded by Clive Sinclair, then a mere 20 years old, in July 1961. Its first product was the Sinclair Micro-amplifier for hi-fi systems, which was followed by the Sinclair Slimline radio kit.
During the course of the 1960s, the company released more amplifiers and ever smaller radios before launching its first electronic calculator in 1972, the Sinclair Executive.
Telefónica's cloud limb slurps Cancom's UK&I biz to cash in on Brit enterprise tech market
There's a tasty NHS contract in there
Telefónica Tech – the cybersecurity and cloud wing of the Spanish-owned telecoms giant – has forked out €398m (£340m) to German outfit Cancom Group's UK and Ireland operations.
The deal is being seen as granting Telefónica a decent toehold in the UK's enterprise market.
Some 600 IT professionals from Cancom UK&I are moving over to Telefónica Tech bringing with them a digital services portfolio including professional and managed services in advanced IT, cybersecurity, and multi-cloud.
Contractors argue umbrella companies need improved regulation, not outright ban
Trades Union Congress proposals miss the point, say campaigners
Contractors have described a UK union's call to ban umbrella companies as unworkable, leading to a greater void in the under-regulated market and making outsourced workers vulnerable.
The Trade Union Congress (TUC), a powerful association of British unions, said yesterday UK government should abolish umbrella companies to employ agency workers in light of what it sees as abuse of workers' rights and financial fraud.
Frances O’Grady, the TUC’s general secretary, said: "These scandalous workplace practices have no place in modern Britain. But our inadequate regulations let dodgy umbrella companies off the hook – allowing them to act with impunity."
On this most auspicious of days, we ask: How many sysadmins does it take to change a lightbulb?
Protip: Don't treat the IT department like this if you value your life
Today is System Administrator Appreciation Day so enjoy this Reg reader's story of just what these brave individuals have to put up with.
Our tale goes back to the dizzying heights of the dotcom boom, when "Ben" was running IT for a financial services business. "While most of the people there were super," he told us, "there were a few who thought that IT staff were their minions for all sorts of menial repairs and issues."
"Needless to say, conflict ensued."
London class-action sueball against Google is a lot like Epic's case except fandroids might win enough for a pint
Hundreds of millions in damages, Play Store in the sights etc. etc.
Yet another anti-Big Tech group litigation lawsuit has been launched in London. This time it's targeting Google, claims to be on behalf of 19 million Android users, seeks up to £920m in damages, and pretty much mirrors Epic Games' lawsuit against the Chocolate Factory over app store charges.
Kicked off in the Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT), this sueball was flung by one Liz Coll, billed as a "consumer champion". In a canned statement she said: "Google created the Android app marketplace, and controls it with a vice-like grip. Customers are herded towards the Google Play Store, and once there have no option but to pay a 30 per cent fee whenever they buy an app or make an in-app purchase."
If this sounds familiar, back in January Epic Games also launched a lawsuit against Google in the CAT, alleging that Google was infringing Britain's competition laws by taking a 30 per cent cut from all Google Play Store transactions. In that case Epic seeks damages for itself over Google kicking Fortnite out of the Play Store; here Coll seeks damages on behalf of 19.5 million UK Android users.
Ordinary salaried Brits: Sweet! Payday! Banking giant HSBC: Oh no it isn't
Customers hacked off as online and mobile service wobbles
HSBC has confirmed it is experiencing problems with its online and mobile banking operations after customers took to social media to complain about the lack of service.
A statement on HSBC's Twitter feed admitted:
What to do with our leftover Saturn V Lego? Why, build another rocket, of course
This time the Saturn 1B
We ventured back into the world of plastic bricks this week with the building of a Saturn 1B to add to our growing rocket garden.
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