Archive for August 1, 2022

Luxembourg Based Pipeline Operator Pwned In Ransomware Attack

Posted in Commentary with tags on August 1, 2022 by itnerd

Bleeping Computer is reporting that BlackCat ransomware has claimed responsibility for an attack on European gas pipeline. Creos Luxembourg S.A., a natural gas pipeline and electricity network operator in the central European country, last week announced that they had suffered a cyber attack. While the cyberattack had resulted in the customer portals of Encevo and Creos becoming unavailable, there was no interruption in the provided services.

On July 28, the company posted an update on the cyberattack, with the initial results of their investigation indicating that the network intruders had exfiltrated “a certain amount of data” from the accessed systems.

At that time, Encevo wasn’t in a position to estimate the scope of the impact and kindly asked customers to be patient until the investigations were concluded, at which time everyone would receive a personalized notice.

Since no further updates have been posted on Encevo’s media portal, this procedure is likely still underway. Encevo says that when more information becomes available, it will be posted on a dedicated webpage for the cyberattack.

For now, all customers are recommended to reset their online account credentials, which they used for interacting with Encevo and Creos services. Furthermore, if those passwords are the same at other sites, customers should change their passwords on those sites as well.

Saryu Nayyar, CEO and Founder of Gurucul had this to say:

     “With Encevo unable to “estimate the scope” of the attack, it highlights a common problem with today’s security operations. Too often are security teams overwhelmed with disparate and unrelated alerts or have to piece together the alerts manually, which leads to false positives and wasted efforts. Security teams lack the high accuracy needed to not only establish a threat but also understand the entire attack campaign versus just individual threats. The ability to collect a full set of telemetry across different sources, link together the various indicators of compromise (IoCs) and “build the puzzle” automatically is critical to providing the full context needed by security teams to get ideally prevent the attack, but also in this case be able respond appropriately and quickly.”

I for one will be interested to see the scope of the attack and the data that was stolen. Or in the words of the pipeline operator, “accessed” as that’s going to be interesting to see. Along with how the pipeline operator deals with the fallout of this attack.

Canadian Tech Hiring Activity Continues At A Steady Pace: CompTIA Study

Posted in Commentary with tags on August 1, 2022 by itnerd

The growth trajectory for technology-related employment is Canada is expected to continue in 2022 following a year in which employers hired more than 100,000 tech workers, according to new research published by CompTIA, the nonprofit association for the information technology (IT) industry and workforce.

Net tech employment in Canada reached an estimated 1,235,692 workers at the end of 2021, an increase of nearly 9% over the previous year, CompTIA’s “State of the Tech Workforce Canada” report reveals. CompTIA projects tech-related will grow by 1.5% this year – more than 19,000 net new jobs.

Employer job postings, another layer of insight into the tech job market, also bounced back in 2021 as many employers resuming hiring activity as the Canadian economy recovered. In 2021 employer job postings for technology positions jumped 54,552 from 2020, the equivalent of a 59% increase. By comparison, job postings for all occupation increased 50%.

Slightly more than half of employer job postings for tech jobs in 2021 specified a required level of work experience, with the remaining 42% unspecified. This indicates that many employers continue to evaluate their recruiting practices to accept more candidates for consideration, such as those with industry-recognized certifications rather than traditional university degrees.

While technology companies operate and tech jobs are available across the country, Canada’s tech community is concentrated in metropolitan areas, led by Toronto. At 10%, Toronto has the highest concentration of net tech employment as a percentage of its overall employment. Montreal (8.3%), Vancouver (7.8%) and Calgary (6.4%) all have a higher concentrations of technology workers than the national benchmark (6.3%).

Three metro markets, again led by Toronto, dominate tech hiring projections for 2022 CompTIA estimates that 5,756 net new tech jobs will be created in Toronto this year. Vancouver (+3,621) and Montreal (+2,705) are also expected to see solid job growth, with smaller number of job gains anticipated in Edmonton and Calgary.

Since 2016, net tech employment has increased by an estimated 213,432 net new jobs, with steady growth during this span, except for a decline in the COVID-19 pandemic impacted year of 2020. Net tech employment accounted for approximately 6.3% of the total Canadian workforce in 2021. The tech industry delivers approximately 5.3% of direct economic value, which translates to $104.5 billion CAD.

CompTIA’s “State of the Tech Workforce Canada” report provides an in-depth look at employment, economic impact, technology trends, salaries, hiring activity and more across the provinces and metropolitan areas of Canada. The report draws upon several data sources, including Canadian government statistics (StatsCan), CompTIA, Lightcast™ (formerly EMSI Burning Glass) and more. The report is available at https://www.comptia.org/content/research/comptia-state-of-tech-workforce-canada.