Cyber Beat Blog

Bitcoin: London police make first cryptocurrency seizure from prolific hacker

When Grant West was arrested on a train last year by undercover British police, surveillance footage showed passengers clapping at what looked like the quick capture of another petty criminal.

But West’s arrest was a milestone for Scotland Yard: The 25-year-old was the first cybercriminal taken into custody and had his Bitcoin currency, worth about $700,000, seized by London Metropolitan Police.

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CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA May have had access to the personal information of tens of millions of unwitting Americans, but a genuine debate has emerged about whether the company had the sophistication to put that data effectively to use on behalf of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.  But one other organization that has ready access to Facebook’s trove of personal data has a much better track record of using such information effectively: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

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Protecting Yourself from Cyber Threats

While online threats are constantly evolving, many cyber criminals use variations of the same methods with cyber attacks. Specifics of these attacks may differ, but the nature of the attacks stay the same. Cyber criminals take advantage of a user’s lack of technical expertise and inherent trusting natures. By understanding these common threats and risks, we can all take steps to protect ourselves online.

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) and the LECC is joining with the Department of Homeland Security and its partners across the country to highlight the importance of cybersecurity and online safety.

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Cybersecurity Tips to Share

Use the tips below in a variety of NCSAM communications:

  • Set strong passwords. Make them long and complex, change them regularly, and don’t share them with anyone.
  • Secure your most sensitive accounts. When it is available, use multi-factor authentication to keep your accounts more secure.
  • Keep a Clean Machine. Keep your operating system, browser, and other critical software optimized by installing updates regularly.
  • Maintain an open dialogue.

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2016 Deloitte-NASCIO Cybersecurity Study

Each year, the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) conducts a survey
of state chief information officers (CIOs) to identify and prioritize the top policy and technology
issues facing state government. State CIOs ranked cybersecurity as their top priority in 2014, 2015,
and 2016. Considering that it seems that cybersecurity breaches in both the public and private
sector are consistently splashed across the news, this is understandable.

The newly released 2016 Deloitte-NASCIO Cybersecurity Study asks state chief information security
officers (CISOs) about the status of cybersecurity in their states,

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Understanding Digital Footprints—Steps to Protect Personal Information for law enforcement

Cybercrime is an ever-growing issue for state, local, tribal, and territorial (SLTT) law enforcement. With advancements in technology, coupled with the oversharing of personal information, law enforcement not only needs to ensure the public’s safety online but also be cognizant of the digital footprint that people are leaving behind.

This document provides material designed to assist law enforcement personnel in protecting themselves and their families from becoming cyber targets: protecting personal information, cyber dos and don’ts,

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The Future of Cyber Investigations at the FBI Is Unclear

by Sasha Romanosky and Cortney Weinbaum

This commentary originally appeared on Inside Sources on August 24, 2016.

Judge Robert J. Bryan of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington might not realize it, but his actions may affect the extent to which the FBI emphasizes the law enforcement or intelligence gathering aspects of its mission. Bryan recently excluded evidence presented by the FBI in the case of U.S.

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New Study on Criminal Justice Information Sharing

Enhancing information sharing practices is a function of twenty-first century policing efforts and a new study published by the Southern Criminal Justice Association is worth a read for its examination of information sharing tools used in Southern California. The journal articles focuses on the distribution of information regarding sex offenders and their follow-on interaction with law enforcement from agencies across San Diego County.  This is important to the LECC community as more empirical research strengthens the ability to measure outcomes of information sharing practices.

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The Real Cost of Free WiFi

June 17, 2016

As warmer weather approaches, millions of Americans will be traveling on summer getaways. Regardless of where you are heading on your vacation, chances are that you will pack connected mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. Once on vacation, most travelers will connect to Wi-Fi to find local hotspots, navigate new cities and countries, and share photos of their trips with family and friends back home.

Public Wi-Fi networks can now be found almost everywhere and make it easy for anyone to connect to the Internet no matter where they are.

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Pokémon Go: A Law Enforcement Alert

by the National White Collar Crime Center

NW3C PokemonGo

Click here to read or download the full advisory.

What is Pokémon Go?

Pokémon Go is an Augmented Reality (AR) game that lets players attempt to capture small cartoon-style characters (“pocket monsters”, or Pokémon), using the real world as an interactive game board. The game is a result of a partnership between Nintendo,

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