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McAfee Warns of Massive Bank Cyberattack

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Security vendor McAfee says it has uncovered new evidence that cybercriminals based in Russia plan to launch a major attack against 30 of the world’s largest banks next spring. The threat was first mentioned in an October report from RSA.

Jennifer Booton from FOX News reported, “Russian cyber evildoers whose servers are based in Romania are coming closer to launching a major attack against 30 U.S. financial institutions aimed at stealing millions of dollars. Attacks involving fraudulent transactions and targeting investment and national banks across the U.S. may launch next spring, new data from security firm McAfee show. ‘McAfee Labs believes that Project Blitzkrieg is a credible threat to the financial industry and appears to be moving forward as planned,’ said Ryan Sherstobitoff, McAfee Labs’ threat researcher.”

CNNMoney’s David Goldman noted, “McAfee’s research upheld an October report from RSA, the security wing of IT giant EMC Corp. RSA startled the security world with its announcement that a gang of cybercriminals had developed a sophisticated Trojan aimed at funneling money out of bank accounts from Chase, Citibank, Wells Fargo, eBay subsidiary PayPal and dozens of other large banks. Known as ‘Project Blitzkrieg,’ the plan has been successfully tested on at least 300 guinea pig bank accounts in the United States, and the crime ring had plans to launch its attack in full force in the spring of 2013, according to McAfee, a unit of Intel.”

At KrebsonSecurity, Brian Krebs blogged, “‘Project Blitzkrieg,’ a brazen Underweb plan for hiring 100 botmasters to fuel a blaze of ebanking heists against 30 U.S. financial institutions in the Spring of 2013, was met with skepticism from some in the security community after news of the scheme came to light in October. Many assumed it was a law enforcement sting, or merely the ramblings of a wannabe criminal mastermind. But new research suggests the crooks who hatched the plan were serious and have painstakingly built up a formidable crime machine in preparation for the project.”

The Washington Post’s Hayley Tsukayama added, “The report, scheduled to be released Thursday by McAfee Labs, warns the financial industry to be wary of software that creates fraudulent online banking transactions. Hackers could create fake bank transactions, or skim a portion of high-dollar bank transfers, the report said.”

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