(Last Updated On: February 1, 2022)

KILLWARE – A New Trend In CybercrimeCybercrime Cybercrime is a crime related to technology, computers, and the Internet. Typical cybercrime are performed by a computer against a computer, or by a hacker using software to attack computers or networks.

MalwareMalware Short for "malicious software," this term means computer viruses and other types of programs that cybercriminals use to disrupt or access your computer, typically with the aim of gathering sensitive files and accounts. With The Intent To Harm Or Kill Humans!

A SCARSSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit www.AgainstScams.org to learn more about SCARS. Cybercrime Insight

Over The Last Two Years, We Have Seen Malware Used To Hurt Humans!

What is Killware?

Killware is a program or code that deploys on machines with the sole intention of harming people.

This harm does not correspond to financial or emotional harm, but instead, it has to do with physical harm.

As the name suggests, Killware is a type of malware that intends to take lives.

Unlike ransomwareRansomware Ransomware is a type of malware from cryptovirology that threatens to publish the victim's personal data or perpetually block access to it unless a ransom is paid. While some simple ransomware may lock the system so that it is not difficult for a knowledgeable person to reverse, more advanced malware uses a technique called cryptoviral extortion. It encrypts the victim's files, making them inaccessible, and demands a ransom payment to decrypt them. In a properly implemented cryptoviral extortion attack, recovering the files without the decryption key is an intractable problem – and difficult to trace digital currencies such as paysafecard or Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies that are used for the ransoms, making tracing and prosecuting the perpetrators difficult. Ransomware attacks are typically carried out using a Trojan virus disguised as a legitimate file that the user is tricked into downloading or opening when it arrives as an email attachment. However, one high-profile example, the WannaCry worm, traveled automatically between computers without user interaction. that gets into your system and locks it away from you until you give them money, killware is a virusVirus A computer program that can replicate itself and spread from computer to computer or file to file. It comes to life only when you take a specific action, such as running a particular program. run by psychopaths that have nothing to do with money. They just want to create destruction.

During an interview for USA Today, Alejandro Mayorkas, a U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security, said that ordinary consumers need to increase their cyber hygiene. He pointed out that work in many cases now is done from home, and the interconnectedness creates vulnerabilities that bad actors could exploit. While up until now, hackers have predominantly been focused on causing monetary damage, recent attacks on critical infrastructure confirm that more and more hackers are out there to simply cause harm. While financial troubles can be undone one way or another, the actions of cyber terrorists can be lethal and irreversible.

A good example is an incident that occurred in Florida earlier this year. The cybercriminals behind the attack used malicious code to tackle a water plant in Oldsmar, Florida. The sole purpose of the hackerHacker A computer hacker is a computer expert who uses their technical knowledge to achieve a goal or overcome an obstacle, within a computerized system by non-standard means. Though the term hacker has become associated in popular culture with a security hacker – someone who utilizes their technical know-how of bugs or exploits to break into computer systems and access data which would otherwise be unavailable to them – hacking can also be utilized by legitimate figures in legal situations. For example, law enforcement agencies sometimes use hacking techniques in order to collect evidence on criminals and other malicious actors. This could include using anonymity tools (such as a VPN, or the dark web) to mask their identities online, posing as criminals themselves. Likewise, covert world agencies can employ hacking techniques in the legal conduct of their work. Oppositely, hacking and cyber-attacks are used extra- and illegally by law enforcement and security agencies (conducting warrantless activities), and employed by State actors as a weapon of both legal and illegal warfare. who penetrated the system was to cause water contamination that could have harmed real people living in the sunshine state. Luckily, the attack was stopped before the water quality was affected. However, the attacker was never caught, and to this day, no one knows who was behind the attack. If the attack was successful – people could have gotten very hurt. What makes this particular attack scary is that the water facility was attacked purely to cause harm. There were no ransomRansom A ransom is an amount of money or other assets of value that is paid for blackmail, extortion, or under other threats or coercion. The ransom is usually paid in cash or now in cryptocurrency. Online blackmail, sextortion, and ransomware all demand ransoms to avoid negative outcomes. requests.

Should you be Worried?

In general, killware will not impact consumer computers (we hope), such as the laptops and devices that regular people use on a day-to-day basis.

Instead, the main intention is to attack companies and agencies that control life depending activities.

For instance, city or state networks control the traffic signals. These cybercriminals or hackers can use their killware viruses to attack this system and cause disruption in the traffic lights. This will potentially lead to accidents and may also result in road fatalities and injuries. It can also blockBlock Blocking is a technical action usually on social media or messaging platforms that restricts or bans another profile from seeing or communicating with your profile. To block someone on social media, you can usually go to their profile and select it from a list of options - often labeled or identified with three dots ••• first responders with disastrous results to life and property.

Another example would be a killware attack on flight control systems. This can lead to incorrect instructions during a flight operation and lead to a deadly plane crash. Thus, these attacks on critical computer systems and servers can impact the lives of thousands of people, leaving them to face a traumatic incident.

Another target are hospitals, and with the thousands of network-connected devices doing everything from monitoring patients to administrating drugs, maintaining life on ventilators, and more! The potential for harm is astronomical.

You should not be worried about your personal asset or business – theoretically. Instead, organizations and government agencies should be the ones to consider the impact of such malware. Fortunately, large organizations spend countless of money on the protection of their systems and firewalls. However, as we have seen mistakes happen and if ransomware can shut down a hospital, killware could commit murder just as easily.

The Cost of Human Errors

With killware present as another type of malware threat in 2021, the costs of human errors are now much higher.

Most of the time, malware entering your system is due to human errors. Essential companies that are running critical servers now have to be extra careful with their passwords and human errors.

If you run a system that can potentially put the well-being of your workers at risk, then you should be more considerate about your passwords, security, and errors with the added threats of killware.  You need to make sure to install updated firewalls to your IT infrastructure, along with antivirus and anti-malware software.

However …

Let’s not forget that our lives are protected by our devices 24/7 at home too!

Our IoT devices, from security cameras and alarms, to thermostats, to alternate power systems, all have the potential to cause physical harm or contribute to actions that can place you and your family at risk.

Imagine is home invaders use killware to invade a property with the intent to commit a crime? What if a hacker uses killware to take control of a car on the freeway? What if a pedophile takes control of alarms and baby monitors to kidnap a child? What if remote drone farm equipment could be used by a hacker to poison food? What if automated pharmacies could be controlled to fill prescriptions incorrectly? What if home patient monitoring systems could be controlled by killware to kill an elderly patient by not reporting emergencies? These are just a few examples.

What Should You Do?

If the killware news has made you more alarmed about the vulnerabilities of your computers, devices, or network, then you can strengthen them by first investing in the best in class anti-malware. An anti-malware investment is well worth your money, and it will help protect your digital assets and valuable data.

Have a malware protector running around the clock scanning for viruses, and alarming you overall potential threats. Furthermore, to avoid human errors, make sure that you do not use any common passwords that apply to all your accounts. Use separate passwords on every device and account. Use a password manager app to help you keep track of them, but also have a paper password log book!

Make sure to clear your browser cache automatically (see your browser settings) since most hackers tend to read your cache files before attacking a system. The best approach is to schedule your browser to clear the cache every time you shut down your laptop or device.

Lastly, make sure that you do not click on links that come with emails, texts, or messages without proper investigation.  Make sure that you thoroughly inspect and investigate the sender’s profile and address before you decide to trust their source.  Email inbox is the most common playground for hackers. Hence, be careful of all emails that fly into your inbox unexpectedly.

If you are concerned about the security of any device, simply unplug it and stop using it!

Essential Tools For Every ScamScam A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. Victim From SCARS Publishing

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SCARS GREN BOOK - The SCARS STEPS Guide to Scam Victim Recovery

SCARS GREEN BOOK
Self-Help Self-Paced Recovery Program Guide

LEARN HOW TO RECOVER ON YOUR OWN

This program is designed to help scam victims struggling to recover on their own and for those who want to understand the overall process. You can be using other resources, such as traumaTrauma Emotional and psychological trauma is the result of extraordinarily stressful events that shatter your sense of security, making you feel helpless in a dangerous world. Psychological trauma can leave you struggling with upsetting emotions, memories, and anxiety that won’t go away. It can also leave you feeling numb, disconnected, and unable to trust other people. Traumatic experiences often involve a threat to life or safety or other emotional shocks, but any situation that leaves you feeling overwhelmed and isolated can result in trauma, even if it doesn’t involve physical harm. It’s not the objective circumstances that determine whether an event is traumatic, but your subjective emotional experience of the event. The more frightened and helpless you feel, the more likely you are to be traumatized. Trauma requires treatment, either through counseling or therapy or through trauma-oriented support programs, such as those offered by SCARS. counselingCounseling Counseling is the professional guidance of the individual by utilizing psychological methods especially in collecting case history data, using various techniques of the personal interview, and testing interests and aptitudes. A mental health counselor (MHC), or counselor, is a person who works with individuals and groups to promote optimum mental and emotional health. Such persons may help individuals deal with issues associated with addiction and substance abuse; family, parenting, and marital problems; stress management; self-esteem; and aging. They may also work with "Social Workers", "Psychiatrists", and "Psychologists". SCARS does not provide mental health counseling. or therapy, qualified support groupsSupport Groups In a support group, members provide each other with various types of help, usually nonprofessional and nonmaterial, for a particular shared, usually burdensome, characteristic, such as romance scams. Members with the same issues can come together for sharing coping strategies, to feel more empowered and for a sense of community. The help may take the form of providing and evaluating relevant information, relating personal experiences, listening to and accepting others' experiences, providing sympathetic understanding and establishing social networks. A support group may also work to inform the public or engage in advocacy. They can be supervised or not. SCARS support groups are moderated by the SCARS Team and or volunteers., or completely independent – on your own!

The SCARS Steps program is a complete program and is provided for the purpose of helping scam victims to overcome this experience. Throughout this SCARS Steps Program, we speak about issues and challenges that a victim may have and help guide them through their recovery. But each person is different and it is important to understand your own reasons for being vulnerable to being scammed.

After the trauma of being scammed, you need to take steps to recover and move on. This may be an alternative to counseling in the short term, but we still encourage you to seek out professional help & support. Throughout this SCARS Steps Program, we speak about issues, challenges, defects, or problems that a victim may have in a generalized way.

The SCARS GREEN BOOK will help you recover from your scam offline and it will always be there when you need it!

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SCARS SLATE BOOK - A Guide For Families & Friends Of Scam Victims

SCARS SLATE BOOK – Let Us Explain What Happened!

A Guide For Families & Friends Of Scam Victims

HOW TO HELP ROMANCE SCAM VICTIMS FOR FAMILIES & FRIENDS OF SCAM VICTIMS

This SCARS Publishing book represents a complete guide to help the families and friends understand how these scamsScams A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. work and how to help the victim.

The SCARS Slate Book should be purchased by family and friends to better understand what happened to the victim and the traumatic impact on them. But it can also be shared by the victim so that they do not have to explain to family and friends about the scam. This publication is to help others to help Scam Victims to make it through this traumatic experience and recover.

Each person is different and it is important to understand how relationship scamsRelationship Scam A Relationship Scam is a one-to-one criminal act that involves a trust relationship and uses deception & manipulation to get a victim to give to the criminal something of value, such as money! Click here to learn more: What Is A Relationship Scam? work and why people are vulnerable; to being scammed, how they were lured in, then groomed and manipulated. This understanding is essential in helping them through the process of ending the scam and then on to recovery. The SCARS Slate Book will provide the information necessary to help support a victim through this process.

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SCARS RED BOOK - Your Personal Scam Evidence & Crime Record Organizer

SCARS RED BOOK
Your Personal Scam Evidence & Crime Record Organizer

ORGANIZE YOUR INFORMATION TO MAKE THE REPORTING PROCESS SIMPLE!

Helps you get and stay organized. This publication is to help Scam Victims organize their crime information. Complete this information before reporting to the police then bring this book with you

Before or after reporting to the police the RED BOOK gives you a dedicated tool to record all the essential facts of this crime. The Victim, the Scammers, the Money, and your Police interactions. Everything that really matters can be easily recorded for your immediate use and for the future!

As we have seen, money recovery/repayment programs can become available years after the scam ends and you need to keep all the details of this crime in case it is needed. We have also seen scammers being extradited to the U.S. and other countries, this will help in the event you testify or give statements, Additionally, this helps you have your information ready to qualify for victims’ benefits, compensation, or aid.

The Official SCARS RED BOOK is your way of recording all the important facts of this crime so that you do not lose essential information, Complete the RED BOOK then put it away with the confidence that you will have it if or when it is needed.

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SCARS BLUE BOOK - Survivor's Recovery Journal
SCARS LIME BOOK - Wisdom & Motivation for Scam Victims
SCARS CHERRY BOOK - A Guide To Understanding Your Fear
SCARS WORKBOOK - 8 Steps To Improvement
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Always Report All Scams – Anywhere In The World To:

U.S. FTCFTC The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is an independent agency of the United States government whose principal mission is the enforcement of civil (non-criminal) U.S. antitrust law and the promotion of consumer protection. The FTC can also act as a clearinghouse for criminal reports sent to other agencies for investigation and prosecution. To learn more visit www.FTC.gov or to report fraud visit ReportFraud.FTC.gov at https://reportfraud.ftc.gov/#/?orgcode=SCARS and SCARS at www.Anyscams.com