DarkCyber for April 17, 2018, Is Now Available

April 17, 2018

DarkCyber for April 17, 2018, is now available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress and on Vimeo at https://vimeo.com/264827844

DarkCyber is a weekly video news and analysis program about the Dark Web and lesser known Internet services.

Push back from different organizations suggests that the unregulated, free wheeling days of digital currencies are winding down. France and Japan have taken action to curtail some digital currency practices. Plus Google and Twitter have banned ads for digital currencies.

In March 2018, Stephen E Arnold, producer of DarkCyber, was named to International Judicial Commission of Inquiry into Human Trafficking & Child Sex Abuse. He points out that as censorship increases, bad actors will step up their pace of innovation.

He said, “An uptick in the use of pastesites and encrypted chat make it increasingly difficult for investigators to identify and take action against those engaged in human trafficking and related crimes. Additional funding and faster cycle procurements of next generation are important priorities in the next six to nine months.”

DarkCyber answers a viewer’s question about the Katim secure mobile phone created by DarkMatter, a cyber security firm in the United Arab Emirates. The Katim device may be a market test or a way to determine interest in secure devices.

VPNs promise increased security for users. DarkCyber points out that a number of VPNs leak user data. Protocol flaws and VPN operators who keep logs of user behaviors make it clear that VPNs may be virtual, just not private.

For more information about DarkCyber, write us at darkcyber333 at yandex.com.

Kenny Toth, April 17, 2018

DarkCyber for April 10, 2018, Is Now Available

April 10, 2018

The DarkCyber video news program for April 10, 2018, is now available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress and on Vimeo at https://vimeo.com/263730425. DarkCyber is a weekly video news and analysis program about the Dark Web and lesser known Internet services tailored to security, law enforcement, and intelligence professionals.

The April 10, 2018, program reviews how law enforcement or intelligence entities can use software exploits to gather information from a suspect’s computing device. The procedure, according to Stephen E Arnold, author of CyberOSINT: Next Generation Information Access, supplements traditional methods such as interviews and traditional computer forensics. In DarkCyber, Arnold reviews an approach spelled out by cyber experts at Narus and the University of California—San Diego. The advantage of the Narus approach is that information can be collected which may not require decryption or direct access to a suspect’s computing device.

Also, DarkCyber reports about Turkey’s alleged use of intercept and content injection technology from the Canadian firm Sandvine. Turkish authorities used a surveillance system to gather information about Turkish and Syrian persons of interest. DarkCyber points out that countries like Lebanon, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates are on a path to reach intelligence parity with countries like France, Germany, and the UK for mobile and Internet data surveillance and content interception capabilities.

DarkCyber reviews surprising findings from a Dark Web research report conducted by cyber security firm Armor. The data in the report which caught the attention of the Dark Cyber were compiled from a study of Dark Web sites selling false passport and personal financial information. The  video includes a link to the Armor study which is offered without charge

Arnold reveals electronic mail vendors providing encrypted email services. One of the services — Proton Mail based in Switzerland — allegedly was used by Cambridge Analytica. Proton’s service makes it very difficult if not impossible for law enforcement to retrieve messages within the system or if they have been deleted from the Proton mail servers. Several vendors of secure email are mentioned in the DarkCyber video.

Kenny Toth, April 10, 2018

Video Search: Still a Challenge

April 6, 2018

As MIT Technology Review describes in its article, “The Next Big Step for AI? Understanding Video,” artificial intelligence still tends to have trouble correctly interpreting video. A recent slew of new jobs at YouTube (owned by Google) underscores this flaw—“YouTube is Hiring 10,000 People to Police Offensive Videos,” reports the New York Post. When it comes to objectionable content, algorithms just don’t get it. Yet. Meanwhile, the PR machine keeps running.

MIT Tech editor Will Knight discusses some promising solutions in the above article, beginning close to home with a collaboration between MIT and IBM. He writes:

“MIT and IBM this week released a vast data set of video clips painstakingly annotated with details of the action being carried out. The Moments in Time Dataset includes three-second snippets of everything from fishing to break-dancing. ‘A lot of things in the world change from one second to the next,’ says Aude Oliva, a principal research scientist at MIT and one of the people behind the project. ‘If you want to understand why something is happening, motion gives you lot of information that you cannot capture in a single frame.’” … “The MIT-IBM project is in fact just one of several video data sets designed to spur progress in training machines to understand actions in the physical world. Last year, for example, Google released a set of eight million tagged YouTube videos called YouTube-8M. Facebook is developing an annotated data set of video actions called the Scenes, Actions, and Objects set.”

Knight also mentions Twenty Billion Neurons, which, he notes:

“… Created a custom data set by paying crowdsourced workers to perform simple tasks. One of the company’s cofounders, Roland Memisevic, says it also uses a neural network designed specifically to process temporal vision information.”

So, we should not be surprised if, soon, AI can comprehend what it “sees.” Meanwhile, sites that host video content would do well to employ the judgment of humans.

Cynthia Murrell, April 6, 2018

DarkCyber for March 27, 2018, Now Available

March 27, 2018

DarkCyber for March 27, 2018, is now available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress and on Vimeo at https://vimeo.com/261699559.

Stories this week: HyperionGray’s Dark Web map explored, Dark Web service firms shift into high-profile marketing mode, Bitcoin attracts more US government scrutiny, alleged Dark Web specialist Freedom Hosting hacked and its data location, and digital currencies attract more US government scrutiny.

Stephen E Arnold discusses four topics in this week’s Dark Web program.

HyperionGray’s Dark Web map makes it easy to get an overview of the Dark Web. The map, when clicked, displays thumbnails of Dark Web sites. Plus, the map allows the viewer to explore Dark Web sites which share feature and content similarities.

Freedom Hosting, a Dark Web services firm, was hacked before it went offline. DarkCyber reports that one hacker discovered a cache of CP (child pornography) data on the site. The hacker copied Freedom Hosting’s customer data and other information. The hacker then made that data publicly available online.

Dark Web consulting and services has become a significant line of business for some specialized firms. In the last six months, some of these companies have stepped up their marketing efforts. DarkCyber reports that more widely available information about the Dark Web has an upside and a downside. The upside is the likelihood of these companies’ attracting more sales leads. The downside is that bad actors now have an easier time keeping pace with techniques and technologies used by security and law enforcement professionals.

DarkCyber notes that the US government is stepping up its interest in digital currencies. One reason is that initial coin offering are being used by some to raise money for startups and that tax authorities may need a way to ensure that income tax payers are reporting and paying applicable taxes.

You can view the program at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress.

Kenny Toth, March 27, 2018

DarkCyber for March 20, 2018 Now Available

March 20, 2018

DarkCyber, the weekly video news program about the Dark Web, is available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress and at www.vimeo.com/260619679. Produced by Stephen E Arnold and Beyond Search, DarkCyber covers software, systems, and applications.

DarkCyber reveals the alleged connections between Tor and the US government, why “baby data” are for sale on the Dark Web, the DarkMatter cyber intelligence firm’s capabilities and its Katim secure mobile phone, and how inmates at a Federal penitentiary ran a pornography business via mobile phones from their cells.

The featured story is a profile of DarkMatter is a company based in the United Arab Emirates. The firm is hiring specialists in a number of cyber related disciplines. The company’s capabilities span a wide range of services. The firm’s Web site suggests that the company has technology to intercept, modify, and divert traffic on IP and mobile networks. DarkMatter also sells a secure mobile phone named Katim. DarkMatter’s growth and its intelligence services make clear the technical capabilities available to customers in the Middle East and other parts of the world.

Journalist Yasha Levine made available documents about the relationship between the Tor Project and the US Central Intelligence Agency. Levine is the author of ’Surveillance Valley” published in 2018. The documents span many years and comprise a collection of more than 2,000 emails and other writings. Dark Cyber notes the relationship between among Tor, its Broadcasting Board of Governors, and the US government. The DarkCyber report includes the link to the document collection.
Personal financial information is offered for sale on the Surface Web and the Dark Web. Stephen E Arnold reports that a Baltimore based Dark Web specialist has located ’baby data’ for sale on the Dark Web. The newborns are a blank slate. With a baby’s identity, a bad actor can create obtain an income tax deduction or use the “clean identity” to set up bank accounts.

DarkCyber also reviews the eCommerce business operated by inmates at a US Federal Correctional Institution in New Jersey. Inmates were accessing the Dark Web and selling pornography business from their cells. The data were obtained via mobile phones. The content was distributed on memory cards and via the cloud.

The weekly video about the Dark Web and lesser known Internet services is available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress.

Kenny Toth, March 20, 2018

DarkCyber for March 13, 2018, Now Available

March 13, 2018

The March 13, 2018 DarkCyber video news program, produced by Stephen E Arnold, is now available. DarkCyber covers the Dark Web and lesser known Internet services.

The program is available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress and on Vimeo at https://vimeo.com/259403592.

The March 13 program explores the high-profile National Crime Agency arrest and sentencing of Matthew Falder. Mr. Falder, a faculty member at the University of Birmingham, was engaged in child pornography, blackmail, and related offenses. In the aftermath of the case, the difficulty of shutting down the Dark Web became evident to some in the United Kingdom.

Stephen E Arnold said, “The UK’s National Crime Agency has demonstrated its capabilities in data analysis of Dark Web metadata and its traditional investigative expertise. The identification, prosecution, and incarceration of an individual responsible for abuse of dozens of young people illustrates the effectiveness of the NCA’s blending of advanced technology and cyber expertise.”

DarkCyber takes a look at the information about the Defense Intelligence Agency’s National Media Exploitation Center. DarkCyber reveals that the capabilities of NMEC and other government agencies are significant and are extensible with the user of tools and methods developed by commercial firms like Cellebrite, now owned by a Japanese company.

The regulation of digital currency is gaining momentum in the US and elsewhere. Coinbase, a digital currency facilitator, has agreed to comply with a request from the US Internal Revenue Service. The IRS will receive the digital currency transaction histories of more than 10,000 Coinbase users. The door remains open for the IRS to gain access to additional transaction data. With this IRS activity, the deanonymization of digital currency transactions is underway.

DarkCyber reveals that TLS (transport layer security) certificates caught  the attention of Recorded Future’s analysts. Dark Web sites are selling hijacked TLS certificates. DarkCyber provides the names of Surface Web vendors which sell legitimate certificates for about $5, a fraction of what Dark Web vendors charge.

Kenny Toth, March 13, 2018

DarkCyber for March 6, 2018, Now Available

March 6, 2018

The DarkCyber weekly video news program is available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress and at vimeo.com/258482690. Produced by Stephen E Arnold and Beyond Search, the program covers the Dark Web and lesser known Internet services.

The March 6, 2018, DarkCyber video news program is now available. This week’s program features information about Stephen Allwine’s attempt to purchase an assassination from the Dark Web Besa Mafia site. Mr. Allwine was swindled and his wife remained alive. DarkCyber explains how an information technology professional killed his wife and staged a suicide. Mr. Allwine was convicted and is in jail with time to contemplate losing $6,000 paid to the Besa Mafia Dark Web site and his incarceration for murder.

DarkCyber reports about ASI Data Science’s smart software. The system can scan millions of videos and identify those with terrorist-related content. The system operates at an accuracy level greater than 90 percent.

Criminals operating from Ukraine stole $50 million in Bitcoin. However, the Dark Web was not the vehicle in this case. The criminals used Google advertising, spoofed Web sites, and gullible people. The fraudsters are now sought by Ukrainian authorities.

A multi-jurisdictional task force has shut down Infraud, a Dark Web site and discussion service. DarkCyber explains the method used to deanonymize the bad actors. One of the criminals used the handle “1stunna,” which is either a reference to the individual’s appearance or a misspelling of “first tuna.” Software correlates handles (aliases) with IP addresses and other data. DarkCyber reports that “tunna” was caught in the net. Arrests took place in the US, Australia, the UK, France, Italy, Kosovo, and Serbia.

Kenny Toth, March 6, 2018

DarkCyber, February 27, 2018, Now Available

February 27, 2018

The DarkCyber video news program about the Dark Web and lesser known Internet services is now available. The program can be viewed at http://www.arnoldit.com/wordpress and on Vimeo at https://vimeo.com/257348721 . The program features Stephen E Arnold, author of CyberOSINT and The Dark Web Notebook.

This week’s program covers research which explains why Dark Web vendors of controlled substances offer free samples. Unlike street dealers who use samples to “hook” new users, Dark Web merchants have another goal in mind. Dark Web drug buyers can leave reviews about the quality of product and the reliability of a Dark Web vendor. The free samples are designed to cause people who post an Amazon-style recommendation about a drug market that is positive.

What motivates an individual to use the Dark Web to locate and acquire child pornography? Researchers from Australia have offered a mathematical procedure to identifying specific characteristics which help answer this question. An analysis of Dark Web traffic combined with streamlined analytic techniques yield a partial answer. Not too surprisingly, greed and desire are the fuel which contribute to the behavior.

Stephen E Arnold said:

“The development of the Tor Use Motivation Module or TMM allows more precise and rapid analysis of hidden Web data. The benefit is that identification of bad actors now consumes fewer computational resources and generates results in minutes, not days.”

DarkCyber reports that open source software can be used to obtain information from multiple Dark Web sites or probe a specific Dark Web site for intelligence. A series of informative articles with code snippets allows a person with average programming skills to conduct a Dark Web intelligence operation.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation, working with the US FBI uncovered and shut down a sex trafficking service in the Peach state. A human trafficking circuit operated between Atlanta and three other Georgia cites.

About Stephen E Arnold

Stephen E Arnold is the author of “Dark Web Notebook” and “CyberOSINT: Next Generation Information Access.” He lectures at the Telestrategies ISS conferences about Dark Web and lesser known Internet security threats. His training programs for law enforcement and intelligence professionals reach hundreds of operating personnel each year and influence agent instructional programs in the US and in other countries. He provides strategic information services to clients worldwide. His services include analysis, investigation support, and training to commercial organizations and government agencies. His daily blog Beyond Search is available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress.

Kenny Toth, February 27, 2018

DarkCyber for February 20, 2018, Now Available

February 20, 2018

The February 20, 2018, DarkCyber walks through the method for de-anonymizing Bitcoin transactions. The paper, written by researchers at Qatar University, highlights information leakage in the Bitcoin blockchain implementation. The video news program is available at www.arnoldit.com/wordpress and on Vimeo at https://vimeo.com/256283081 .

A Dark Web customer used multiple identities to purchase Class A controlled substances via the Dark Web. Investigators were able to trace one of the bad actor’s false identities to specific personal details and arrest the individual. Aliases combined with use of the Tor browser are vulnerable to the investigative methods used by British cybercrime investigators.

LmnTrix, an Australian cyber security firm, discovered a new ransomware service called GAndCrab. What makes the service unique is that the developers impose a terms of service agreement upon individuals wishing to extort money. One example of the deal is that clients of the ransomware software developer must agree to use the software outside of Russia and other members of the Commonwealth of Independent States or have their license for the ransomware revoked. MBA thinking now informs black hat hackers.

You can view the video at this link.

Kenny Toth, February 20, 2018

Winter Olympics Opening: Was It a Demo?

February 11, 2018

I love digital technology. I even have a computer with video editing software. It seems that other folks follow my lead. Many are younger than I. I know this because the opening ceremony drone extravaganza was a demo.

I read “Drones Grounded at Opening Ceremony — But Not on Tape Delay.” I assume the write up is accurate, although even “real” news outfits have issues with “fake news.”

The line between reality and post production seems blurry. Does it matter? Not to advertisers as long as they get eyeballs. And Intel? Well, at least the post production drone show works unlike some of the firm’s technology.

Stephen E Arnold, February 11, 2018

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