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Updates and Commentary from the Messaging, Malware and Mobile Anti-Abuse Working Group

By Stuart McBride, Head of Threat Intelligence, AdaptiveMobile Security
 

Cybercriminals frequently use major world events, including natural disasters, international conflicts, and political elections, to manipulate vulnerable targets. The latest scheme is focused on exploiting the public’s fear around COVID-19 and the coinciding economic shutdown through SMS spam attacks. Attackers are primarily using messages that appear like legitimate updates to stimulus and relief payments to entice unsuspecting victims into clicking links or providing information.

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The global uncertainty created by COVID-19 has left many individuals and organizations vulnerable to online scams and other cyberattacks, making our work and the work of our members, more important than ever. To facilitate anti-abuse collaboration and the development of security best-practices, while ensuring the health and safety of our members, we’re excited to host our 49th General Meeting from June 8-11, 2020 virtually for the first time ever.

Author: Janet Jones, M3AAWG Board of Directors Vice Chair; Diversity and Inclusion Chair; and Data and Identity Protection Committee Co-Chair

 

Supporting the development of inclusive leaders and diverse teams is a priority at M3AAWG. Our mission has long been to work together to solve complex cybersecurity anti-abuse challenges, sothe participation from our diverse body of members to reflect the broadest range of experiences is critical to our overall success. 

 

Author: Amy Cadagin (M3AAWG Executive Director)

 

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was designed to harmonize different data privacy laws across European countries in an effort to protect the privacy and data protection rights of individuals and empower them to better understand and make decisions on who processes their data and in what way.

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Author: Barry Leiba, M3AAWG Senior Technical Advisor

 

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This February, M3AAWG awarded Cristine Hoepers, Ph.D., the general manager of CERT.br, the Brazilian national Computer Emergency Response Team, with the annual Mary Litynski Award. Now in its tenth year, this award honors the memory of Mary and the work she did to shape M3AAWG into the leading organization that it is today, one that is dedicated to fighting online abuse such as malware, DDoS attacks, election security attacks, and more.

We're in the middle of a crazy time in history, and if you’re feeling stressed, that's totally understandable. Our hearts go out to those who have been impacted by the virus and we urge you to hang tough. We're going to get through this, and so will you.

We also want to explicitly recognize that even if you're in a part of the country where COVID-19-related impacts have been limited to-date, you're still probably navigating some big changes in your life.

The United States is facing an unprecedented election season. Instead of in-person rallies and speaking slots, campaigns are now entirely online, relying primarily on digital engagement with voters. Never in history have candidates had so many ways of reaching voters directly or indirectly, the most popular—and effective—is text messaging to mobile devices. However, poor execution and disregard for established guidelines could undermine the potency of this channel. In a time when digital isn’t a nice to have but the only connection to the voting populace, getting it wrong will certainly spell disaster.

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Q&A with Janet Jones, M3AAWG Vice Chair Board of Directors / Senior Security Program Manager – Customer Security & Trust Engineering at Microsoft

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Local Number Portability (LNP) is available in many countries and regions. This service, popularized by consumer mobile phone use and commonly known as number porting, enables users to retain their telephone number when switching from their existing communications service provider (or carrier) to a new service provider. In many cases, LNP support is legally mandated, and the mandates may include strict process requirements and timeframes for action by the existing service provider.

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