ATM “jackpotting” — a sophisticated crime in which thieves install malicious software and/or hardware at ATMs that forces the machines to spit out huge volumes of cash on demand — has long been a threat for banks in Europe and Asia, yet these attacks somehow have eluded U.S. ATM operators. But all that changed this week after the U.S. Secret Service quietly began warning financial institutions that jackpotting attacks have now been spotted targeting cash machines here in the United States.
Adobe, Apple, Microsoft and Mozilla all released updates on Tuesday to fix critical security flaws in their products. Adobe issued a patch that corrects four vulnerabilities in Shockwave Player, while Redmond pushed out updates to address four Windows flaws. Apple slipped out an update for its version of Java that mends at least 17 security holes, and Mozilla issued yet another major Firefox release, Firefox 8.
Hackers have released exploit code that can be used to compromise Windows PCs through a previously unknown security flaw present in all versions Internet Explorer, Microsoft warned today.
Dave Forstrom, director of trustworthy computing at Microsoft, said the software giant is not aware of any attacks via this flaw attack customers, “given the public disclosure of this vulnerability, the likelihood of criminals using this information to actively attack our customers may increase.”
I’ve received several e-mails from readers concerned about a mysterious, undocumented software patch that Microsoft began offering to Windows 7 users through Windows Update this week. Readers were nervous about this patch because it lacks any real description of its function, and what little documentation there is about it says that it cannot be removed once installed, and that it may be required as a prerequisite for installing future updates.