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CSS News Round-Up: Apple Forced to Disable Apple Watch App Due to Security Exploit

July 15, 2019

News Round-Up – Get a Quick Rundown of What You Need to Know


The Converged Security News Round-Up looks into recent reports and journalism covering converged security threats and trends affecting all industries. You can suggest articles to us on LinkedIn and on Twitter at @ConvergedSecSol. Visit our services page to learn more about the CSS suite of services, including managed security services and end-to-end cyber-and-physical protection.


Apple Disables Apple Watch Walkie-Talkie App Due to Vulnerability

The Walkie-Talkie app available for Apple Watches has been shut down after someone found a bug which would allow eavesdroppers to secretly listen in on somebody’s iPhone conversations. According to Apple, the vulnerability wasn’t exploited by threat actors yet. Naked Security writes that it’s the second major security exploit bug Apple has had to do with in 2019. In January, Apple had to address a FaceTime bug which could take advantage of users’ webcams. 


IDG Report: 8 in 10 IT Leaders Want to Eliminate Passwords

A survey of 200 IT security leaders by IDG found that more than 80% reported they would ditch password authentication methods if they could. The preferred option, according to 75% of those surveyed, would be biometric authentication through mobile devices. Eight-eight percent of surveyed IT leaders said they think mobile devices will become digital ID for users that need access to business data in the near future. The survey found that almost 50% of those surveyed believe that eliminating passwords would reduce almost half of the security breach attempts they observed.


New Estimate: 2018 Cyber Attacks Cost $45 Billion in 2018

The Internet Society’s Online Trust Alliance (OTA) released a report estimating the total cost of cyber attacks in 2018 at $45 billion. OTA found ransomware as a leading cost-driver, causing an estimated $8 billion in damages. These attacks were estimated to grow to $20 billion by 2021. Other major categories of attacks analyzed including cryptojacking, phishing, and business email compromise (BEC) attacks. OTA also provided a list of recommendations to protect organizations against cyber attacks. Its first step: “complete risk assessments for executive review, operational process, and third-party vendors.” Converged Security Solutions offers risk assessments and risk quantification programs to organizations of all sizes. Learn more here.


Marriott Looking to Contest $125M GDPR Fine Related To Massive Data Breach

Britain’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) announced that hotel conglomerate Marriott International would face a fine of £99 million ($125 million) under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) for the data breach which leaked records of about 30 million customers over the course of four years. Marriott communicated the fine to the SEC in a recent filing and also reported that it had taken out a cyber insurance policy before the breach was discovered. The network breach was traced back to a 2014 hack of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, which Marriott acquired in 2016. Marriott has announced it intends to contest the fine. 


Converged Security Solutions provides our clients with measurable value by better quantifying, reducing, and managing security risk through assessments, remediation, and monitoring of IT and critical infrastructure. Our services span cyber and physical security to address the growing complexities in a world with internet enabled devices. Contact us to request quotes, learn more about the full catalog of services, or for a free initial consultation.