Malicious Life
Cybereason
Malicious Life by Cybereason tells the unknown stories of the history of cybersecurity, with comments and reflections by real hackers, security experts, journalists, and politicians.
When Marissa Mayer joined Yahoo as CEO, the company's stock rose 2% the day of the announcement. But the new CEO was basically initiated into her job by a major data breath - and the worst was yet to come.

Falun Gong is a religious movement heavily persecuted in China. In 2017, members of the movement sued Cisco Systems for aiding and abetting the Chinese government in this persecution - since Cisco helped China erect 'Golden Shield'": the massive Chinese IT infrastructure project which combined internet censorship and pervasive Chinese state cyberspying.

The Great Firewall is just mind-bogglingly big, repressing freedom of speech and information for over 800 million Chinese internet users every year. The Great Firewall is so big that it’s worth asking: how did the Chinese manage to build it in the first place? 20 years ago, our info-sec technology was much less advanced than it is today. China was a second-rate technology power, not even comparable to their position today. Most of all: a firewall, like the one they proposed, had never existed be

Ran & Israel Barak, Cybereason's CISO, discuss the latest development in ransomware evolution: multi-stage attacks in which the attackers infiltrate the target network, steal data and gather intelligence - before detonating the ransomware to cause maximal denial-of-service to the victim organization. What does this new tactic mean for the use of backups as a mean to mitigate the risk from ransomware? This episode was recorded live on July 29th, 2020.

In 2015 Bastian Obermayer, an investigative journalist for the Süddeutsche Zeitung, received a message every journalist dreams of: the biggest leak in journalism history. But dealing with the massive 2.7 Terabyte data-dump, 11.5 million documents - while making sure his source's identity could not be uncovered, turned out to be a huge challenge.

Hackers keep modifying and improving their methods of operations. Assaf Dahan, Sr. Director and Head of Threat Research at Cybereason, tells us about the recent shift to Blackmail - as a way to pressure Ransomware victims to pay the ransom.

On August 1st, 2017, Bitcoin forked. But it wasn't the SegWit2x fork everyone was talking about - It was a different fork, supported by a coalition of miners who, in doing what they were doing, were essentially ditching SegWit2x in favor of their own scaling solution. What happened here? Who betrayed SegWit2x?

SegWit2x was proposed as a solution to Bitcoin's network problems - but some people in the anti-2x movement claimed that it is nothing less than a cyber-attack: a 51% attack on Bitcoin, to be precise. This is getting ugly.

A black market economy has developed around Fortnite's in-game currency. Cyber criminals are hacking user accounts, juicing credit cards, and selling virtual currency for real-life dollars and cents. To ensure fun and safety for players, the cycle must be stopped.

In 2017, Bitcoin was winning. Money, attention, success poured out of every seam. It appeared that a golden age had dawned. But just under the surface, the network was teetering on the verge of collapse. Technical problems that were just nuisances when the community was small now became glaring and potentially lethal. Debates among tight communities of knowledgeable users and developers ballooned into full-on internet wars. Factions hardened. Heroes became enemies of the people.

Amit Serper was doing a routine inspection on a client's network, when he came across a suspicious-looking pen-testing tool, exhibiting RAT-like behavior. We'll follow Amit's investigation, and in the process learn the basics of cyber research.

The COVID19 pandemic forced organizations to transition to a work-from-home model - and many of them were unprepared for such a radical departure from the ‘normal’ security perimeter. Sam Curry, Cybereason's CSO, talks to Ran about the lessons learned from COVID19, and what steps should Cyber Security professionals take in order to be ready for a future outbreak.

At the end of our last episode, it kind of seemed like Huawei--the Chinese telecommunications company accused of aiding in state cyberspying--was completely innocent. They were being accused of crimes they may not have committed, based on evidence that largely did not exist. The conspiracies around them seemed unfair at best, malicious at worst. But there’s another side to this story, of course. Huawei didn’t end up on people’s radars for no reason. They’ve earned their notoriety.

At the end of our last episode, it kind of seemed like Huawei--the Chinese telecommunications company accused of aiding in state cyberspying--was completely innocent. They were being accused of crimes they may not have committed, based on evidence that largely did not exist. The conspiracies around them seemed unfair at best, malicious at worst. But there’s another side to this story, of course. Huawei didn’t end up on people’s radars for no reason. They’ve earned their notoriety.

Over the past 20 years, western governments have accused Huawei of everything from IP theft to financial fraud to cyber spying. Often, these claims are made either with no evidence, or only circumstantial evidence. Is Huawei really a national security threat, or are they a political scapegoat?

On November 22nd, 1987, a hacker took over the signals of two Chicago-area TV stations and broadcast two bizarre and somewhat vulgar messages. In this episode we explore this notorious hack, and its implications on the nature of hacking in general.

The fact that ToTok came out of the United Arab Emirates is no surprise: in recent years, the UAE has deployed some of the most sophisticated mobile device exploits ever seen. But they got a lot of help from one country in particular... today’s episode is about the UAE. But it’s really about the Americans.

The corporate structure supporting ToTok involved at least half a dozen real companies, shell companies and intelligence groups, with the individuals who actually operated the app being hidden behind other individuals given sinecure jobs and ponied around to the public as the supposed developers. Ultimately, though, every path that begins with ToTok ends with one very rich and powerful man at the heart of the Emirati state. His name is Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed al-Nahyan.

Only a few months after its release, ToTok - an ordinary messaging app, with no exceptional features - had over five million downloads, and held the number 4 position in Apple's App Store global charts. So what was it that made ToTok so popular, so quickly? The answer: nothing good.

As much as we can imagine what it’s like to be a defender in a cyber-conflict, we don’t really know what it is - unless we’re in the shoes the time of it happening. That's what simulations are for.