Cybersecurity News Round up (Oct 10)

The ever-buzzing cyberspace did not fail to excite as a lot went down last week. Big companies such as Binance, the leading crypto exchange platform, became the victims of a cyberattack. Here are some of the stories that made the rounds;

Hackers Steal $570 Million After Breaching Binance Smart Chain

On October 6th, Binance BNB Chain announced the suspension of their services due to a cyberattack. It was reported that hackers stole about $570 million from the BNB Chain The cyberattack is the latest to have hit the crypto sector this year.

“Due to irregular activity, we’re temporarily pausing BSC. We apologize for the inconvenience and will provide you with further updates. Thank you for your patience and understanding,” the company tweeted.

Information about the breach was confirmed through a spokesman on Friday. The CEO of Binance, Zhao Changpeng, broke the silence on the cyberattack. He confirmed that the tokens were stolen from a blockchain bridge used in the BNB Chain.

Zhao said in a tweet that hackers stole only $100 million worth of crypto from the Binance Smart Chain (BSC). However, in a blog post, the BNB Chain team said the hackers withdrew about 2 million BNB cryptocurrency (approximately $570 million).

A spokesperson from Binance added that the majority of BNB cryptocurrencies are still in the hackers’ wallets. There were notable conflicts between the figures the CEO stated and the ones from the team.

One reason for this is that $470 million is recoverable. A spokesperson said about $100 million worth of BNB could remain unrecovered. The BNB Chain team is working with several blockchain security companies to track and recover the stolen funds. We also saw some updates from Uber.

Uber Former Chief of Security, Joe Sullivan, Convicted for Concealing Past Data Breach

Uber Technologies Former Security Chief was convicted for concealing a massive data breach that hit the company. Joe Sullivan was accused of being connected to the data breach that continuously troubled the company.

On Wednesday,  a San Francisco federal court found Sullivan guilty of concealing the 2016 Uber hack from regulators for more than a year. The jury rejected his claim that other executives at Uber were aware of the data breach.

He was charged and convicted of concealing the theft of personal data of 50 million customers and 7 million drivers and obstructing a government investigation.

Companies in the US are under state and federal laws to immediately disclose data breaches. The incident led Uber to compensate all 50 states with $148 million, which was the biggest payout at that period. The Federal Trade Commission has reprimanded Uber over a similar data breach that occurred in 2014.

Sullivan was accused of privately arranging for Uber to pay a bug bounty to the hackers. He was accused of arranging $100,000 in bitcoin to pay the hackers to delete the stolen data.

According to further reports, the October 2016 Uber cyberattack was concealed until the new CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, disclosed the information. Sullivan was sacked from Uber Technologies three months into Khosrowshahi’s tenure.

The US Attorney for San Francisco, Stephanie Hinds, maintained that the accused tried to conceal a data breach and warned others about such acts.

FBI and CISA Warn Public About Hackers Attempting to Manipulate US Midterm Elections

Due to the midterm elections, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) warned that hackers may attempt to manipulate the elections. They warned about hackers manipulating information and trying to spread disinformation.

So far, the FBI and CISA announced that they have seen no existing reports suggesting cyber activity was used to prevent free and fair elections.

However, as in previous election processes, “threat actors may attempt to spread false information about election infrastructure. The aim is to promote social discord and distrust in U.S. democratic processes and institutions. The hackers’ operations are also to undermine confidence in the election process.

According to alerts issued by the FBI and CISA, threat actors may opt for dark web media channels, online journals, social media, and text messages, to spread disinformation. The agencies said specifically that threat actors may claim to have successfully compromised election infrastructure.

The threat actors could also claim to have published or leaked voter information, which is publicly available. Finally, the agencies said they are urging Americans to critically evaluate information during an election period. 

Although it may seem like NFTs are still going through a decline, there have been innovations in the NFT market. OpenSea, the largest NFT marketplace is contributing to NFT innovation as its keen on improving NFT services.

OpenSea Announces New Innovation on its Platform in Processing Bulk NFT Listings and Purchases

OpenSea, an NFT marketplace, has announced that the platform will now allow its users to list and purchase NFTs in bulk. The company said in a tweet on Oct 5th, 2022, that users will now be allowed to purchase up to 30 digital collectible items in a single flow.

“We’re officially live with bulk listing and buying! You can now list and buy up to 30 items in a single flow on OpenSea. Let’s walk through what this experience looks like,” OpenSea tweeted.

The new development will allow users to add up to 30 items from the same chain to their cart before purchasing in a single transaction. This process will also reduce the cost of gas fees during transactions, making purchases more convenient and streamlined for users.

Furthermore, the company explained the process, “In your collected items tab, you can access bulk listing if you click on the ‘+’ symbol when you hover over an item card or click ‘list for sale’ in the ‘More Options ‘ drop-down. You’ll then be able to select up to 30 items to list at once.”

According to Cointelegraph, the innovation in the platform comes after its volume has drastically reduced. In May, the platform recorded over $405.75 million in transactions but subsequently suffered a massive decline and recorded only $5 million worth of NFT transactions in August.