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Researchers from cybersecurity firm Cybernews published a report detailing the discovery of six vulnerabilities in PayPal’s electronic payment system that, if exploited, could enable threat actors to carry out a variety of attacks, including multi-factor authentication bypass and malicious code transmission, among other things.
Cybersecurity experts discovered that the latest version of the PayPal app for Android can be used to circumvent two-factor authentication (2FA), which is enabled when a user attempts to log into the platform from a new computer, location, or IP address. To do so, the researchers used a MiTM proxy and received a token to log into the account after a series of steps.
Researchers have found a way to validate a new phone number on PayPal without using the one-time PIN (OTP), which is a device that checks whether a phone number is linked to the account holder. If not, the amount will be denied.
PayPal’s default function limits users to changing one or two characters of their name at a time; after that, the option vanishes. Cybersecurity experts developed a fake account to show the existence of a loophole that allows for complete name change at any time.
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PayPal, the world’s largest online payments company, has had a difficult few weeks. The first was confirmation that an authentication hack would enable an attacker to gain access to an account after phishing credentials, bypassing the financial firm’s authentication tools. Today, according to a new security study, the entire authentication mechanism can be bypassed, allowing an attacker to gain access to an account using only stolen credentials, which can be purchased on the dark web for “as little as $1.50.”
PayPal, for one, said it takes such submissions seriously and “reviews each with an acceptable sense of priority.” I was told that the team had looked into it thoroughly, but that after reviewing the submissions, they had “found that the submissions did not pose a challenge, and that the claims made by CyberNews are false and misleading.”
CyberNews told me, “We’d like PayPal to take this vulnerability more seriously.” “At the moment, [PayPal] is classifying it as ‘out-of-scope’ simply because it includes stolen credentials.” The research team went to great lengths to demonstrate the exploit’s effectiveness to me. Although there is no way of knowing the current state of the back-end algorithm that checks the operation, it appeared to bypass the check at first glance.
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Using public, open-source developer resources, an ethical hacker demonstrated a novel supply-chain attack that breached the networks of more than 35 technology companies, including Microsoft, Apple, PayPal, Shopify, Netflix, Tesla, and Uber.
Security researcher Alex Birsan invented the assault, which injects malicious code into popular tools for installing dependencies in developer projects that usually use public repositories from sites such as GitHub. The malicious code then uses these dependencies to spread malware through the internal applications and systems of the targeted business.
Across three tested programming languages—Python, Ruby, and Java—the vulnerability he exploited, which he dubbed dependency uncertainty, has been found within more than 35 organizations.
“The vast majority of the businesses impacted have 1,000 or more employees,” Birsan observed, “which most likely represents the higher prevalence of internal library use within larger organizations.”
The researcher was paid over $130,000 in bug bounties and pre-approved financial contracts with targeted organizations, all of which agreed to be checked. PayPal, Apple, and Shopify, the original target of the hack, each added $30,000 to the number.
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Another PayPal study from security researchers has surfaced, this time warning of a risk of theft to users. Thousands of people have allegedly been scammed and millions of dollars have been lost as a result of this new scheme. Regardless of how tech savvy you are, this scam’s devious social engineering twist has the power to fool even the most tech savvy of us. Take the measures outlined below to secure your accounts and prevent being the next victim.
The topic was brought to light by CyberNews’ ever-vigilant researchers. The group claims its mission is to reveal security vulnerabilities that place a large number of people at risk. I wrote about their most recent PayPal study, a “sensitive login hack,” in which an intruder was able to bypass some of the platform’s defenses, a few weeks ago. Between then and now, CyberNews has revealed a data breach in the United States’ online dating industry, putting “millions of women at risk.” Now they’re back with another PayPal problem, one that users should be aware of in order to avoid being a victim.
According to CyberNews, the majority of the fraudsters behind this scam are from the United States, the United Kingdom, or Russia, and this scam is now their primary source of income for the majority of them. And why wouldn’t it be? According to the researchers, a typical attacker will earn $2,500 per day and work in groups that can earn up to $1.5 million a month. Because of the widespread usage of PayPal, the United Kingdom appears to be a hotbed for the attacks right now—but this is a global issue. The con can be used everywhere.