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Incident responders are cleaning up after hackers accessed a key European IT network. The FBI apprehended a man accused of helping hackers sell stolen data. And the court battle between NSO Group and WhatsApp is just getting started. This is CyberScoop for Tuesday, March 10.

EU power grid org says IT network was hacked

You may have never heard of ENTSO-E, but the organization of 42 grid operators plays a key role in syncing electricity markets across the European Union. On Monday, it revealed that incident responders were dealing with a “cyber intrusion” of its IT network. No critical control systems were impacted, but ENTSO-E makes an intriguing target for anyone interested in phishing utility employees. Sean Lyngaas has the reactions from around Europe.

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FBI says Russian made it too easy to sell stolen data

U.S. authorities have arrested a Russian man accused of running an illicit service where buyers allegedly have spent years purchasing stolen data and hacked web accounts. In a complaint unsealed March 9, the FBI accused Kirill Frisov of operating Deer.io, a web hosting service where subscribers can host independent stores online for roughly $250. The site, which remains online, is based in Russia, outside the reach of U.S. law enforcement, and advertises itself as the home of more than 24,000 accounts with more than $17 million in sales. Frisov was taken into custody at JFK airport in New York City. Jeff Stone has more details.

Why NSO was a no-show

The Israeli spyware company accused of exploiting WhatsApp to run surveillance operations against users has asked a court for a 120-day extension to respond to a lawsuit from the software's owners. After recently failing to appease in court, NSO Group alleges that Facebook, WhatsApp’s parent company, lied in a recent procedural filing about whether it had properly served NSO Group under The Hague Convention. The firm also hinted that it plans to hinge its defense on a “sovereign immunity” claim, which is usually invoked by nation-states to argue immunity when trying to avoid civil damages in other countries. Shannon Vavra has more.

Crooks are trying to exploit more than just coronavirus fears

Health-related phishing lures are nothing new, but they appear to have grown more popular with criminals since the emergence in December of the novel coronavirus, which has infected over 100,000 people globally. On Tuesday, cybersecurity company Proofpoint demonstrated how hackers also are trying to use bogus HIV test results to trick people into installing malware on their computers. The scheme targeted big pharmaceutical and health care companies. The H-ISAC, the health care industry’s information sharing hub, says it’s on high alert for health-related cyber subterfuge. Sean has more context.

The RAT pack

Researchers at Cybereason say they’ve found a pervasive hacking campaign that uses a trojan known as njRAT to hijack victim machines. The attackers are piggybacking on other hacking tools to spread their malicious code via forums and website, Boston-based Cybereason said. The bad guys have been busy, rebuilding versions of their tools on a near-daily basis, according to the research, which has turned up almost 1000 njRAT samples. Read all about it.

Improving communication between IT and OT

Dave Weinstein, Chief Security Officer for Claroty, talks with CyberScoop Editor-in-Chief Greg Otto at the 2020 RSA Conference about how IT and OT offices are coming together to protect their entire enterprise. "You need to make sure that whatever you’re doing in the IT side from a governance perspective, from a security operations perspective, is integrated with what’s happening on your your plant floor or your factory floor,” Weinstein told CyberScoop. He also talks about what he believes to be an improvement in communication between the two parts of the enterprise. Greg Otto has the interview.

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