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How prosecutors are getting up to speed on cyber-related investigations. The FBI warns about recent ransomware activity. And how some state officials are beefing up on digital defenses. This is CyberScoop for August 30, 2021.

Fellowship of the pings

The Justice Department is launching a fellowship to prepare a new generation of legal talent to deal with cyber threats to national security. The fellowship is just one prong in agency-wide efforts to update it strategy for taking on cybercriminals. Fellows of the new program will rotate through different departments that work on cyber-related crimes. Tonya Riley reports.

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FBI warns that Hive ransomware hackers are calling victims by phone

Americans already trying to avoid calls from telemarketers, call support scammers and long-winded in-laws now have another reason to ignore that ringing phone: ransomware hackers. Scammers affiliated with a digital extortion outfit known as Hive are using phone calls to dial victims who are infected with a malicious software strain that locks up their files until they agree to pay a hostage fee, according to an August 25 FBI alert. Investigators first observed hackers deploying the malware in June, with attackers leveraging Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Protocol to infect business networks. Jeff Stone looks closer.

Cyber classes for 911

The public safety technology firm Mission Critical Partners announced last week that it'll begin selling cybersecurity training sessions tailored for public safety workers. A company official said the courses will include how front-line employees can reduce threats, an outline of common threats — such as social engineering, physical attacks and access control — how to implement a cybersecurity defense strategy and “how to talk cybersecurity with IT teams and understand what they are asking for.” Colin Wood has more at StateScoop.

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