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Preview: A Security Port Blog

A Security Port Blog



Security related news, security information, virus warnings, alerts and security tips posted daily.



Published: Wed, 19 Sep 2007 01:00:00 -0400

Last Build Date: Mon, 5 Sep 2016 11:43:44 -0400

 



Privacy and Security in the Age of the Driverless Car

Mon, 10 Oct 2016 11:39:50 -0400

Driverless cars are coming.  After testing prototypes for years, companies are poised to roll out self-driving vehicles for consumer use.  The future is here.  But, are we ready for it?

The existing law is clearly not. There are currently no federal statutes governing driverless cars, and only eight states (i.e., California, Florida, Louisiana, Michigan, Nevada, North Dakota, Tennessee, and Utah) and the District of Columbia have enacted laws addressing driverless cars.  These state statutes typically define autonomous vehicles, or autonomous technology, establish parameters and guidelines for their testing, and or require that the vehicles have either manual override or a licensed driver in a position to assume control of the vehicle.



The Challenge of Internet of Things Security

Sat, 8 Oct 2016 11:38:30 -0400

IoT is one of the most significant technology shifts since the creation of the internet with projections of up to 100 billion devices connected by 2025. This scale is enormous and the value of both consumer and enterprise IoT connecting wearables, cars and trucks, highways and entire cities has been measured in the trillions of dollars by 2025. IoT literally has the potential to transform the way humans work, live and play.

With this value and transformational potential comes inherent risks and none more serious than a car being hacked or as catastrophic as a country’s power grid being compromised. Both these scenarios have already been demonstrated and is further exacerbated by the overall lack of legal policy, guidelines and standards. Simply put, IoT scale, diversity and adoption is outstripping our ability to create laws to govern and guidelines to standardise it’s adoption.



Sorry Robocop: AI security guards do NOT stop people from stealing

Thu, 8 Sep 2016 11:36:30 -0400

While the robot is not designed to look particularly menacing or authoritative, it has cameras that enable it to see what people around it are doing.
The behaviour of hundreds of students was captured by a hidden GoPro action camera, reports New Scientist.

The results showed that a disappointing seven per cent snaffled reserved food from the table, despite the robot guards presence.

This was only very slightly lower then the eight per cent who took supplies when the table of food was not guarded at all.



Modernizing Security

Tue, 4 Oct 2016 11:35:27 -0400

In perusing the web and taking stock, as well as talking to my constituents in business and IT, several things become clear:

Most employees steal proprietary data when quitting or getting fired from an organization.
Nearly all employees are vulnerable to exploit kits.
Four out of five breaches go undetected for a week or more.  Some take up to a year.
Just over a third of global organizations feel they are prepared for a sophisticated cyberattack.
Generally, when an organization is targeted for attack, the attackers need only minutes to bring about a compromise.
Most organizations lack the means to track and control their most sensitive data.
Most organizations lack clear security guidelines, policies, and reinforcement through training.
What does the modern organization do?  



Why identity protection is the next phase in security

Sun, 2 Oct 2016 11:33:29 -0400

If the chances of an organisation being hacked on a long enough timeline eventually hits 100 percent, then as a user with personal information stashed in silos all over the internet, on the same timeline the user is likely facing a percentage of information leakage that is in multiples of hundreds.

While as an industry we appear to have accepted the pragmatic security arguments of this scenario, the situation for privacy and the individual is quite the reverse.



Three Easy Tricks to Improve Your Online Security

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

There is a helpful website for checking to see if your email address has been included in a database dump, but it does not include every dump. If you use unique passwords for each service, you know that if one of them gets breached, all of your other accounts will be safe.



Hackers Playground: Security Lapse Cited By 82% Of Firms, Says Intel

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

The median salary for a cybersecurity job is 2.7 times that of average wages in Australia, France, Germany, Israel, Japan, the U.K. and the U.S., yet 82% of organizations in those countries are experiencing a shortage in skilled cybersecurity workers, chipmaker Intel (INTC) found in a poll by its Intel Security business.

More than half (53%) of respondents say the cybersecurity skills shortage is worse than talent deficits in other IT professions.



5 Strategies For Enhancing Targeted Security Monitoring

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 09:00:34 -0400

These examples will help you improve early incident detection results.

Crime scenes -- in both the physical and digital sense -- exist where investigators must work quickly to gather and process evidence before it is no longer available or has been modified. In both cases, investigators set up a large perimeter around the crime scene and work to narrow it down by establishing credible, evidence-based conclusions.

In the digital realm, the most common collection of security incident and event information occurs in sources where large volumes of data can be gathered in support of investigations.  However, this large volume of data can easily lead to analysis paralysis, making it more difficult to find the proverbial needle in the haystack.



Security Experts Agree: The NSA Was Hacked

Fri, 23 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

A group of hackers known as the Shadow Brokers is currently selling off cyber-spying tools, which it claims belong to the U.S. government, in an online auction. Now, analysis of software that the group made freely available to prove its legitimacy suggests that it’s authentic, and likely to belong to the National Security Agency.



Top 10 Security Predictions Through 2020

Wed, 21 Sep 2016 09:00:37 -0400

1. Through 2020, 99% of vulnerabilities exploited will continue to be ones known by security and IT professionals for at least one year.
2. By 2020, a third of successful attacks experienced by enterprises will be on their shadow IT resources.
3. By 2018, the need to prevent data breaches from public clouds will drive 20% of organizations to develop data security governance programs.
4. By 2020, 40% of enterprises engaged in DevOps will secure developed applications by adopting application security self-testing, self-diagnosing and self-protection technologies.
5. By 2020, 80% of new deals for cloud-based access security brokers (CASBs) will be packaged with network firewall, secure web gateway (SWG) and web application firewall (WAF) platforms.
6. By 2018, enterprises that leverage native mobile containment rather than third-party options will rise from 20% to 60%.
7. By 2019, 40% of Identity of as a Service (IDaaS) implementations will replace on-premises identity and access management (IAM) implementations, up from 10% today.
8. By 2019, use of passwords and tokens in medium-risk use cases will drop 55%, due to the introduction of recognition technologies.
9. Through 2018, more than 50% of Internet of Things (IoT) device manufacturers will not be able to address threats from weak authentication practices.
10. By 2020, more than 25% of identified enterprise attacks will involve IoT, though IoT will account for only 10% of IT security budgets.



Top 6 Trends that Impact Your Security Posture

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

In the same way endpoints are proliferating, so are the networks to which these devices connect. Just a few years ago, the corporate network and the home network were the predominant connection points. Today people often connect to multiple networks over the span of a few hours. We wake up and check our work email on the home broadband network; we do a little work at the local coffee house via guest Wi-Fi; we tap into the enterprise network when we arrive on-site at work; we switch to another guest network at the airport, even on the airplane. And, (gasp!) perhaps we even glance at email while stopped at a light over 4G wireless.

All of these networks add a new layer of complexity to the attack surface. To provide adequate security across all of them, what's needed is location-agnostic security technology that follows the user across his or her daily journey, wherever that might be. You need a unified, seamless blanket of protection.



3D faces based on Facebook photos can fool security systems

Fri, 16 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Facial recognition systems are not quite perfect yet and can still make mistakes especially when they are assessing the faces of people of color. Now, a team of researchers from the University of North Carolina showed that companies developing security systems based on the tech really do have a lot of work ahead of them. They proved that a number of existing systems can be fooled by the VR-like, computer-rendered faces they created. Further, they made their 3D models, which they showed the security systems on a phone, using only photos taken from social networks like Facebook.



Election security as a national security issue

Wed, 14 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

We recently learned that Russian state actors may have been responsible for the DNC emails recently leaked to Wikileaks. As we understand the facts, the Democratic National Committee’s email system was hacked. Earlier this spring, once they became aware of the hack, the DNC hired Crowdstrike, an incident response firm. The New York Times reports:

Preliminary conclusions were discussed last week at a weekly cyberintelligence meeting for senior officials. The Crowdstrike report, supported by several other firms that have examined the same bits of code and telltale “metadata” left on documents that were released before WikiLeaks’ publication of the larger trove, concludes that the Federal Security Service, known as the F.S.B., entered the committee’s networks last summer.



Mobile Security Problems

Mon, 12 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

When it comes to security, most mobile devices are a target waiting to be attacked. That's pretty much the conclusion of a report to Congress on the status of the security of mobile devices this week by watchdogs at the Government Accountability Office.

Combine the lack of security with the fact that mobile devices are being targeted by cybercriminals and you have a bad situation. For example, the number of variants of malicious software aimed at mobile devices has reportedly risen from about 14,000 to 40,000 or about 185% in less than a year, the GAO stated.



Traveling Security Risks

Fri, 9 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Frequently travelers who are not prepared for the security risks associated with staying in hotels put potentially sensitive information and their own personal safety at risk. Here's how to spot common threats, and protect your data while on the road.

Hotels are digitally dangerous places these days. And that is not idle speculation. Security researchers have been sounding the alarm on sophisticated attacks directed at hotel users for years.

Most of the earliest reports pointed to surgical strikes on high-profile executives or representatives of government agencies, but they could prove to be precursors for more wide-ranging attacks on the general public. Modern business travelers, with their treasure troves of files and personal information, will be prime targets, and they are also more likely to let their guard down after an exhausting journey.



Frequent password changes are the enemy of security, FTC technologist says

Wed, 7 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Shortly after Carnegie Mellon University professor Lorrie Cranor became chief technologist at the Federal Trade Commission in January, she was surprised by an official agency tweet that echoed some oft-repeated security advice. It read: Encourage your loved ones to change passwords often, making them long, strong, and unique. Cranor wasted no time challenging it.



Understanding iOS passcode security

Mon, 5 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Ah, the eternal question: Should you protect your iOS device with a passcode? On one hand, the knowledge that your data is presumably safe from prying eyes makes carrying around your phone and tablet less worrying; on the other, having to tap in a code every time you want to check your email or make a phone call can quickly become annoying.

Apple, for its part, is not helping make this choice easier for consumers: Methods for bypassing the passcode screen or circumventing it altogether keep getting discovered, and though the company typically provides patches fairly quickly, these security holes don’t instill confidence in iOSs ability to keep our data safe.

Besides, passcodes seem inflexible and at times even incompatible with the way we use our devices.



Rio Beefs Up Security Measures as Summer Olympic Games Are Set to Begin

Fri, 2 Sep 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Rio is ramping up security for the Summer Olympics, top officers in the state police force announced at a news conference on Monday.

However, state officials said Monday that an additional 634 officers will be added to the police units that monitor areas that commonly have shootouts, 24-hour supervision of the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue will begin on Tuesday, and three surveillance blimps will be in Rio's north, south and west zones, according to USA Today.



$67 Billion North America Cyber Security Market 2016: Analysis and Forecasts to 2022 - Research and Markets

Wed, 31 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

The North America cyber security market is estimated to grow over $67.28 billion by the end of 2022. Currently, cyber security solutions are acquiring a major share of the market because of increasing cyber attacks in this region. The U.S. is acquiring a major market value because of continuous cyber attacks on application verticals such as healthcare, banking and financial services and manufacturing, among others.

This market study includes an extensive overview and analysis of the North America Cyber Security market by solutions and services, application verticals and countries, along with developing a comprehensive outlook of the market. The report provides extensive insights of the different developments, trends and key participants.

Cyber crimes cost have reached around $100 billion in the country. Canada and Mexico globally stands at the 13th and 17th position respectively as major sources of cyber crimes. North America needs to build a strong resilience system for managing cyber crimes.

Various forms of cyber crimes such as ransom ware are rapidly increasing in North America which can further lead to business interruptions and financial losses.



Homeland Security chief weighs plan to protect voting from hackers

Mon, 29 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson said hes considering whether to designate the US election system as critical infrastructure, which could trigger greater cybersecurity at the ballot box.

On the heels of the Democratic National Convention hack and the political fallout that is ensuing months before the presidential election, the countrys Homeland Security chief said he is considering measures that would strengthen cybersecurity protections for voting.



Cybersecurity: Tiny Cybersecurity Stock on Cusp of Triple-Digit Gains?

Fri, 26 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Cybersecurity revenue advanced from 2013 to 2015 and is predicted to continue at a healthy rate that could help jumpstart IMPV stock. Imperva is estimated to grow its revenue 29.7% to $303.96 million this year and another 24.2% to $377.44 million in 2017. These are terrific growth metrics if IMPV stock can deliver what Wall Street expects.



Cybersecurity blind spots: Vulnerabilities and risks

Wed, 24 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

How should companies deal with vulnerabilities? It may depend on the specific vertical industry an organization is in, according to Pavel Slavin, technical director of medical device cybersecurity at healthcare firm Baxter International. We can not just take a Microsoft patch on Tuesday and apply it -- medical devices can not be patched before the patch is validated as it could kill the patient, he said. We need to be able to adapt how we respond to vulnerabilities that could cause more harm than good.



Feds to hire 3,500 cybersecurity pros by years end

Mon, 22 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Last October, the U.S. government began hiring 6,500 new cybersecurity IT professionals. It has hired 3,000 so far, and plans to hire another 3,500 by January 2017, the White House said Tuesday.

The government is now trying to improve its recruiting and retention of cybersecurity professionals. This includes finding ways to improve government pay, which can be well below the private sector.

This strategy was detailed Tuesday in a White House memo. The U.S. plans to do more to reach women, in particular, who comprise less than 25% of the government's cybersecurity workforce.



DARPA Challenge Tests AI as Cybersecurity Defenders

Fri, 19 Aug 2016 16:25:25 -0400

This summer, seven finalist teams in the Cyber Grand Challenge the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) will do battle with AI systems that can autonomously scan rivals’ network servers for exploits and protect their own servers by actively finding and fixing software flaws. The immediate rewards comes in the form of a US $2 million prize for first place, $1 million for second place, and $750,000 for third place. But in the long run, DARPA hopes the challenge results will prove autonomous AI systems have become capable enough to help humans in the never ending struggle to protect computer software and networks.



How to train new grads on corporate security

Wed, 17 Aug 2016 16:20:38 -0400

Millennials bring a lot to the workplace, whether they're pushing the boundaries of company culture or forcing companies to modernize. But there are a few risks associated with hiring recent grads -- especially if it is their first job in the industry -- and one of those risks is data security.

In a recent study from the Ponemon Institute in partnership with Experian, which surveyed over 16,000 people at companies with data protection and privacy training programs, 66 percent of respondents cited employees as the biggest security threat to their company. And 55 percent said that their organization had, at some point, experienced a security incident or data breach due to a malicious or negligent employee, according to the report.

With new grads entering the workforce, it is time to make your security policies a priority in the hiring and onboarding process. According to David Wagner, CEO of ZixCorp and Bradon Rogers, Senior Vice President of Product Strategy and Operations at Blue Coat, companies need to take a multi-step approach to help prevent their employees -- especially new hires -- from becoming their biggest security threat.



Auto Industry Bug Bounty Programs Point to Our Security Future

Mon, 15 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Go ahead: Hack me if you can.

That was the message this week from Chrysler, as they announced their new bug bounty program. If you report a security hole, you can get paid up to $1,500 in cash. Fiat Chrysler (FCA) has decided to partner with Bugcrowd on this new security program.

Chryslers new endeavor is to crowdsource the process of uncovering and fixing security vulnerabilities associated with automobiles. And the focus is not just on your cars engine, gas pedal or brakes:



Here are the CIAs Possible Security Guidelines For Pokémon Go

Fri, 12 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

It is 2016, Pokémon are (augmentedly) real, and everyone is losing their minds. After a week of traffic accidents, cliff accidents, trespassing, and mobs descending on public spaces, it is time for cooler heads to prevail, and various governments and nonprofit organizations are stepping in to provide some level-headed guidelines for catching ‘em all.

Including, it seems, the U.S. Department of Defense.

Within the U.S. government, operations security (OPSEC) refers to the process intelligence officers and other government workers follow to protect unclassified information that could be used by adversaries to cause harm. Generally, it means being aware of what you’re posting on social media, writing in emails, or talking about in public, keeping in mind that such information could make its way into an adversarys hands.



New York State ramps up security following Nice attack

Thu, 11 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

While New York has not been home to a terrorist attack since September 11, 2001, Cuomo said that “The Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Office of Emergency Management Watch Center will be on heightened alert, monitoring world events.”

The horrific rampage in Nice is a direct attack on the universal values our two countries have long championed and upheld,”Cuomo said, adding, This is not only an attack on France, but an attack on democracy.

The increased security follows a terrorist attack in Southern France late Thursday, when a man drove a delivery truck for about a mile through a crowd of people celebrating Bastille Day.



More code deploys means fewer security headaches

Tue, 9 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Organizations with high rates of code deployments spend half as much time fixing security issues as organizations without such frequent code updates, according to a newly released study.

In its latest annual state-of-the-developer report, Devops software provider Puppet found that by better integrating security objectives into daily work, teams in "high-performing organizations build more secure systems. The report, which surveyed 4,600 technical professionals worldwide, defines high IT performers as offering on-demand, multiple code deploys per day, with lead times for changes of less than one hour. Puppet has been publishing its annual report for five years.



Google Ventures invests $20 million to rate enterprise security threats

Sun, 7 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

GV, formerly Google Ventures, is investing $20 million to help the enterprise analyze security weakness which may result in successful data breaches hurting itself or suppliers.

Announced on Thursday, New York-based SecurityScorecard said a Series B funding round led by GV has raised $20 million which will be used to fuel SecurityScorecards continued scale and innovation delivering cybersecurity ratings.

Additional partners in the investment round include Sequoia Capital, Evolution Equity Partners, Boldstart Ventures and Two Sigma Ventures.



Concerns about security, information sharing up among industrial control system security pros

Fri, 5 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Security managers working with industrial control systems are increasingly concerned about security, and worried about insufficient information sharing in the industry, according to a new survey.

This year, 67 percent of respondents said that the threats to the control systems were moderate to severe, up from 43 percent last year, said Derek Harp, director of ISC global programs at Bethesda, MD-based SANS Institute, one of the authors of the report.



Why APIs beat proxies for cloud security

Wed, 3 Aug 2016 09:00:00 -0400

While many businesses laud the benefits of cloud computing, some feel less than 100 percent confident in their ability to fully secure their cloud resources.

Is it any wonder? Your corporate network might link to multiple cloud services, run by different operators. Mobile users might be accessing cloud resources simultaneously over dissimilar WANs and device types. Some users and devices fall under your management domain; others do not.



Maybe You Should Borrow This Security Trick From Zuckerberg

Mon, 1 Aug 2016 09:00:38 -0400

It was meant solely to be a celebratory post by Mark Zuckerberg about Instagram reaching the milestone of 500 million users. But as CNET reports, the Internet was far more interested in what Zuckerberg revealed inadvertently: His laptop is in the background, and it shows that Zuckerberg puts a piece of tape over its camera as an apparent security measure—to ward off hackers who might gain control of it remotely to spy on him. A Twitter user named Chris Olson seemed to be the first to spot it, tweeting on Tuesday that Zuckerberg also tapes over his microphone jack and uses a rather obscure email client from Mozilla called Thunderbird.



Trend Micro unveils ransomware security suite

Sat, 30 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

New software and services are tailored for ransom attacks. Will more security vendors follow suit or build anti-ransomware functionality into existing malware tools?

Trend Micro announced security software and services to help organizations avoid and eradicate ransomware as such attacks are becoming more frequent in the healthcare industry.

Whereas security software rivals Fortinet, Intel McAfee, Kaspersky, Sophos and Symantec have long-standing anti-malware programs and all offer various utilities for combatting ransomware, Trend Micro said its new offerings are tailored specifically for the malicious code that encrypts data so hackers can demand a ransom to unlock it.

To that end, Trend Micro’s suite includes ransomware readiness assessment, ransomware removal tools, enhancements to existing software that help better fight ransomware, and hotlines that customers can call for advice.



Why Brexit Will Promote European, British, and American Security

Thu, 28 Jul 2016 09:00:38 -0400

On June 23, Britain will hold a referendum on its membership in the European Union. Opponents of a British exit from the EU assert that a Brexit would be bad for both British security and the peace of Europe. Indeed, on May 9, British Prime Minister David Cameron, a supporter of Britains EU membership, implied that Brexit risks causing a European war.

This argument rests on bad history and a worse understanding of the risks to peace in Europe today. If Britain exits the EU, it will ensure that it retains control of its foreign, security, and alliance policies. This will allow it to continue to play a leading role in the NATO alliance, and ensure that it remains a vital security and intelligence ally of the United States. It is the United States and NATO—not the EU—that have brought peace to Europe.



10 Data Security Mistakes Startups Can Not Afford to Make

Tue, 26 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Startups are usually in a rush, and they often forget about data security as they try to get an MVP out.

With new businesses, a data breach can result in the company closing down. To address the mistakes most commonly made, I asked ten YEC entrepreneurs the following:

What is the one crucial mistake that tech startups seem to make when it comes to data security nowadays and why?

1. Personal and professional borders.
Bring your own device (BYOD) has become increasingly popular during the past years, even more so in the startup scene.



Gartners top 10 security predictions

Sun, 24 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

One overriding recommendation is that businesses must be aware that delaying security measures in an effort to avoid disrupting business can be a false economy.

He recommends that security pros should make decisions about protecting networks and resources based on the range of risks that known weaknesses represent to the business and its goals. Rather than thinking about their role purely as protecting, they should look at it as facilitating successful business outcomes.

Here are the predictions and recommendations:  

Threat and vulnerability management

Prediction: Through 2020, 99% of vulnerabilities exploited will continue to be ones known by security and IT professionals for at least one year.

Prediction: By 2020, a third of successful attacks experienced by enterprises will be on their shadow IT resources.

Prediction: By 2018, the need to prevent data breaches from public clouds will drive 20% of organizations to develop data security governance programs.

Prediction: By 2020, 40% of enterprises engaged in DevOps will secure developed applications by adopting application security self-testing, self-diagnosing and self-protection technologies.

Prediction: By 2020, 80% of new deals for cloud-based cloud-access security brokers (CASB) will be packaged with network firewall, secure web gateway (SWG) and web application firewall (WAF) platforms.

Prediction: By 2019, 40% of identity as a service (IDaaS) implementations will replace on-premises IAM implementations, up from 10% today.

Prediction: By 2019, use of passwords and tokens in medium-risk use cases will drop 55%, due to the introduction of recognition technologies.




Chrome 51 serves up 42 security fixes, $65K in bug bounties

Fri, 22 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Not only did Google add a Credential Manager API to Chrome 51 for Windows and Mac that lets developers go beyond simply creating passwords, it served up 42 security fixes, including 23 from outside researchers resulting in a more than $65,000 pay out in bug bounties.

With the new Credential Management API, developers can more easily store and retrieve passwords meaning that users to sign on in a single tap. And they will be signed back in after a session expires. The federated account employed by the user to sign will be remembered as well.

Google noted that some of the vulnerabilities fixed by the latest Chrome release carried a high-severity rating.

In a release, Google provided the following information on the bugs and credited the researchers responsible for finding them, as well as the bounties they received:



How to toughen your LinkedIn accounts security in light of hack

Wed, 20 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

On May 18, the professional-networking site said that more than 100 million members email and password combinations hacked during a 2012 data breach had just been posted online. In the same breach, hackers stole and publicly released a separate set of 6.5 million encrypted passwords that year.



Debunking seven fundamental cyber-security myths

Mon, 18 Jul 2016 09:00:13 -0400

If we look at the world of cyber security through the eyes of the media, it is a pretty frightening view. We hear story after story of security breaches hitting major companies and the next data leaks that follows affecting thousands of people. It’s enough to fill any business with trepidation.

With cyber security such a big talking point, we tend to see a lot of information floating around -- some of which is not in the least bit true. If a company wants to enhance its IT security it is imperative to be able to separate facts from fiction.


It’s these fundamental security myths that cause organizations to incorrectly assess threats, misallocate resources and set inappropriate goals. Dispelling those myths is key to developing a sophisticated and appropriate approach to information security.



No stars for Internet of Things security

Sat, 16 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Deliberate threats, such as back doors and remote data transmission, you fix with code reviews.

Ignorant threats, such as poor security configurations or bad design choices, you find through penetration testing.

Security evaluations take time, cost money, and always fail to find every possible problem,



DarkMatter Cyber Security Poll Reveals 48% of Respondents Organisations Still Lack Key Cyber Security Personnel

Thu, 14 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

DarkMatter, an international cyber security firm headquartered in the UAE, has found that 48% of respondents to its DarkMatter Cyber Security Poll say their organisations do not have a senior management executive assigned to oversee cyber security, while 46% of respondents said their organisations did not have a Board-level representative responsible for cyber security.

The statistics are extracted from a poll conducted by DarkMatter during the Gulf Information Security Expo & Conference (GISEC) 2016 held in Dubai, at which the company was the Cyber Security Innovation Partner. DarkMatter was able to poll the answers of over 200 information and communication technology (ICT) visitors present at the event, with the aim of the exercise being to identify attitudes held by enlightened ICT professionals towards the role of cyber security in modern, highly digitised economies, and the state of their organisations' cyber threat resilience.

The poll identified that 23% of respondents believe that their organisations have been victim to an internal cyber security breach, while 32% believe their organisations have fallen victim to an external attack. This suggests external threats pose a greater threat to organisations' digital assets than internal ones, with a further poll result indicating 46% of respondents believe cyber security breaches are most often the result of human factors.  



Five most common myths about web security

Tue, 12 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Protection of corporate crown jewels is more important than web apps

No, you cannot secure one part of your network and ignore another one. Information security shall be comprehensive and holistic: you shall analyze all threats, vulnerabilities and thus attack vectors in their integrity. Today, no cybercriminals will try to steal your crown jewels directly wherever they are [securely] stored.

Breaking in via your web applications in pair with spear phishing will probably be one of the cheapest, reliable and silent ways to get into your corporate network and bypass your defense-in-depth.



Delta Is Trying To Innovate Faster Security Lanes For The TSA

Sun, 10 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

U.S. airlines are starting to provide supplemental support at checkpoints around the country this spring thanks to a flagging TSA. Earlier this month, that effort came in the form of airlines hiring supplemental staff to direct traffic at checkpoints and enhance the customer experience, though no actual screeners were hired. Now, Delta Air Lines has gone so far as to design and install its own checkpoints into Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson International Airport and gift them to the TSA.



Waiting in Line for the Illusion of Security

Fri, 8 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Interminable lines at airport security checkpoints have caused a great deal of unnecessary misery.

Many people have missed their planes, and some flights have been delayed because too few passengers made it to the gate on time. A video of a two-hour security delay at Chicago’s Midway International Airport generated millions of views.

There are many explanations for what has been happening at the airports, but, as economists, we naturally prefer a basic, economic one: When something is free, it is likely to be wasted.



Hackers showed us how easy it is to secretly clone a security badge

Wed, 6 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Almost everyone uses an RFID badge to get into their office or apartment, and it's a lot easier than you might think for someone to steal the data on your card to gain access. A group of white hat hackers called RedTeam Security cloned one of our work IDs to show us just how quickly they can do it from as far as 3-6 feet away.



Brainjacking: the future of software security for neural implants

Mon, 4 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

In a new scientific review paper published in World Neurosurgery, a group of Oxford neurosurgeons and scientists round up a set of dire, terrifying warnings about the way that neural implants are vulnerable to networked attacks.

Most of the article turns on deep brain stimulation devices, which can be used to stimulate or suppress activity in different parts of the brain, already used to treat some forms of mental illness, chronic pain and other disorders.



Cyber security Q&A: Insurance, the Skills Gap and Gender Diversity

Sat, 2 Jul 2016 09:00:00 -0400

From a security point of view, what lessons have been learned from 2015?
The main lesson from 2015 is that the adversaries are persistent and we are not as secure as we thought we were. With so many prominent data breaches last year – from the likes of Ashley Maddison to TalkTalk – more and more organisations are finally giving cyber security the attention it deserves.

How do you see the security landscape developing over the next 12 months?
Security is more on the agenda than ever before, and this is showing no sign of relenting. I recently visited a global financial services company and every one of their board meetings now has a three-hour itinerary dedicated specifically to cyber security. A couple of years ago this was unheard of, but because of the increasing threat landscape we face today, it is an issue organisations of all sizes realise they have to address. .



Want a security clearance? Feds will now check your Facebook and Twitter first

Thu, 30 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

The government will start scanning Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media accounts of thousands of federal employees and contractors applying and re-applying for security clearances in a first-ever policy released Friday.

Federal investigators looking at applicants’ backgrounds to determine their trustworthiness will not ask for passwords or log in to private accounts, limiting their searches to public postings. And when they find information that has no relevance to whether they should have access to classified information, it will be wiped from government servers, the policy promises.



Manufacturers beef up cyber security

Tue, 28 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

One thing that helps modern manufacturers stand out in the marketplace — their intellectual property — also makes them an attractive target for hackers.

Take United States Steel Corp., for example. The steelmaker last month filed a formal complaint with the U.S. International Trade Commission, asking the organization to investigate Chinas biggest steel producers for unfair trade practices. One that stands out? The allegation that China hacked into U.S. Steel’s systems and stole information on how to make advanced, high-strength steel.



Companies Get Creative to Relieve Shortage of Security Professionals

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

While many companies offer heftier salaries and better benefits, others are trying fractional IT security positions and more intelligent systems to ease the shortage of security professionals.

Bluelock, an Indianapolis-based cloud provider of disaster recovery services, has had to struggle to attract the right security staff to help the company develop and manage its cloud service.

Being based in the Midwest, the company has to compete against both the West Coast and East Coast for talent. As Indianapolis becomes more of a tech hub, they compete with other local companies, as well.



3 ways startups are fighting for digital and physical security

Fri, 24 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Internet accessibility for all people, of all ages and in all places has unleashed unprecedented resources and opportunities. It also unlocked our digital and physical security. The sacrifice of safety is an unintended consequence of the Internet age. Can the tools that caused this vulnerability be reappropriated to make us safer?

Mapping
Reporting
Intervention



Manchester United home finale postponed due to security concerns

Wed, 22 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Fans were evacuated from the stadium, as thousands flooded into the streets amid the security concern. The match was first delayed, but something, which was not yet clear, prompted security officials to have the match called off. It turns out, per the Greater Manchester police, bomb disposal experts carried out a controlled explosion within the stadium. Neil Ashton of The Sun said on the NBC Sports telecast that Bournemouth's coach and players were at one point stuck inside the stadium and weren't cleared to leave.



Whose Fault Is It Security Lines are So Long?

Mon, 20 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Modal Trigger It is your fault security lines take forever, according to the TSA

New Yorkers can blame themselves for unbearably long lines at area airports, the Transportation Security Administration said in response to criticism from the Port Authority.

The TSA admitted that waiting times at Newark, JFK and LaGuardia airport security checkpoints had increased since last year — hitting a high of 55 minutes this spring — but blamed the spike on passengers who clog up checkpoints with too many carry-on bags.




Security Should be a Top Priority

Sat, 18 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Security is a constantly moving target, but few IT departments have the resources to do security thoroughly. PC security is something of a thankless job, to boot. Do it right, no one says a word. Do it wrong, you’re on the firing line.

Surprisingly, security is not always a top factor when IT looks to replace aging PCs, according to IDC. Of the top five considerations cited when making PC brand decisions, security ranked fourth below overall performance (priority no. 1), overall costs (no. 2), and overall specs (no. 3).

IT typically adds security to laptops via software such as anti-virus, anti-malware, firewalls, and intrusion detection. They’re all certainly important and should be a part of your overall security strategy.



Security Think Tank: Identifying, attracting and keeping the right IT security talent

Thu, 16 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Attracting security talent

If you want the best cyber security resource, you need to make a compelling offer.

It is not about the money. As a seasoned consultant myself, I like a challenge. I like to work on new, emerging things and stay on top of my game.

I do not want a job governing security on legacy Windows 2003 systems and supporting a company that puts cyber security last on its list of priorities.

That is bad for two reasons: I am unchallenged and my name is in tatters when these systems get breached.



A look inside the Department of Homeland Securitys Cyberhub

Tue, 14 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

The building where the Department of Homeland Security tracks every cyber attack against the US is surprisingly bland. With its neutral exterior and circular drive, I was not even sure we were at the right place until I saw our press liaison standing in the lobby. There are no signs to distinguish it from the generic office park that surrounds it, and the doorman would not even confirm if DHS had an office inside.

The National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center, better known by the abbreviated NCCIC, opened in 2009 to serve as a place where DHS could monitor cyber threats across government agencies and critical infrastructure, such as power grids and dams.



Digital Vulnerability: Cyber security expert on preventing your social media from being hacked

Sun, 12 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Passwords:
At least ten characters, including: upper case letters, lower case letters, special characters and numbers.
Second form passwords: Most people find them annoying, but are key to keeping your password and account hack free. Facebook and other social media sites allow you to use your cell phone as a second means of authentication. For example, when you log into your Facebook you will receive a text message with a special number password you have to enter in order to access your account
Change password every 30-45 days: Many people find changing their password annoying, but keeping your new passwords in a secure electronic wallet is a great way to keep track of them in case you forget.



The Evolution of Voice Authentication as a Security Method

Fri, 10 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

New forms of authentication are required to secure online resources. With the rise of cloud computing and the corresponding threat of identity theft, vendors have stepped up their game in this arena: MasterCard is now using selfies for authentication and security vendors are adding new forms of multifactor tokens to their arsenal.

Another productive avenue has been the use of various biometric-based solutions for access management, such as voice authentication factors.

Biometric Authentication Takes Hold
Voice authentication and fingerprint detection both have their advantages and disadvantages when used in authentication. The good news is that you do not have to carry anything else since you already have your voice or your fingerprints or your eyeballs. Also, using biometric factors can eliminate the need to provide personal information to verify their identity.



Security bug could expose Android phones to hackers

Wed, 8 Jun 2016 09:00:04 -0400

Security researchers are warning that a software bug could leave many Android phones vulnerable to hackers' attacks. Security firm FireEye wrote in a blog post Thursday that a flaw in a software package from Qualcomm could give hackers access to everything from call histories to text messages. Older versions of Android, 4.3 and earlier, are reportedly more vulnerable than newer versions.

The bug, called CVE-2016-2060, was made possible when Qualcomm, a mobile chipmaker, provided new APIs to developers that were part of system service network_manager.



Security Pros Help Make Business Less Risky

Mon, 6 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

For several years, one of the primary themes coming out of CompTIAs security research was the importance that companies placed on being secure. Nearly every company we surveyed said that security was a moderately higher or significantly higher priority today than it was two years ago, and there was an expectation that security would continue to grow as a priority in the years to come.

There were some problems deeper in the data though. Apparently, saying security is a high priority isn’t the same as taking the right steps. Companies continued to report data breaches—both in our surveys and in major headlines. There was a low level of concern for emerging topics, with most focus still placed on traditional attacks like malware. And companies still viewed security as a technology problem, discounting corporate processes and end user education.



Rethinking security for the Internet of Things

Fri, 3 Jun 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Many people scoffed in January 2014 when Cisco CEO John Chambers pegged the Internet of Everything as a potential $17 trillion market, five to 10 times more impactful on society than the Internet itself. Two years later, it seems that Chambers  prediction for the phenomenon more commonly known as the Internet of Things (IoT) could be on the conservative side.

There is no question that IoT is ushering in a new era of innovation, connecting the digital and machine worlds to bring greater speed and efficiency to diverse sectors, including automotive, aviation, energy and healthcare. But with sensitive data increasingly accessible online — and more endpoints open to attackers — businesses are quickly realizing that security cannot be an afterthought.



Security expert: Everything is hackable

Wed, 1 Jun 2016 09:00:29 -0400

There are two types of people: those whose cell phones have been hacked and know about it, and those whose cell phones have been hacked and are yet to find out. That is what security expert John Hering told Sharyn Alfonsi in an interview that will air on Sundays 60 Minutes.



Apple opens up on how it approaches security following FBI battle

Mon, 30 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

In a press briefing Friday, Apple discussed how security works on the iPhone and iOS. The meeting, which was often technical, shed insights into its broader approach to security.

Although the meeting was not specifically about the battles the company has had with the FBI and parts of the U.S. government – including cases in San Bernardino and Brooklyn – that conflict was still the elephant in the room.

Still, Apple insists its goal with iOS and iPhone security is not about protecting users from the government, it is about protecting users from hackers.



Cloud computing is everywhere, and so are frayed nerves about

Fri, 27 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

However, while cloud is apparently everywhere, so is a great deal of nervousness around security. A majority of enterprise IT leaders (77 percent) note that their organizations trust cloud computing more than a year ago, but only 13 percent completely trust public cloud providers to secure sensitive data.

Add to that a lack of awareness of what vulnerabilities may still exist. A majority of respondents, however (72 percent), list compliance as the primary concern across all types of cloud deployments, and only 13 percent of respondents actually know whether or not their organizations stored sensitive data in the cloud. In addition, fewer than one-quarter (23 percent) of enterprises are aware of data breaches with their cloud service providers.



Senate to Americans: Your security is not our problem

Wed, 25 May 2016 09:00:22 -0400

The Senate Intelligence Committee just released a draft of long-awaited legislation to tackle the problem authorities have with encrypted communications. Namely, because encryption is so secure, it interferes with court orders in the same way private property poses problems for police who just want to get things done.

The Compliance with Court Orders Act of 2016 authored by Sens Richard Burr, R-N.C., and Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., mandates companies to shoulder the technical burden of accessing encrypted emails or files when investigators issue court orders.



Making sense of enterprise security

Mon, 23 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Human beings have a tendency to do things with technology that go beyond original intent, and this inclination should be celebrated. After all, technology continues to drive radical innovation, whether in the form of new applications, use cases or platforms.

Unfortunately, it is also this type of behavior that makes security such a difficult problem. As individuals and organizations leverage technology for intended and unintended uses, it becomes virtually impossible to foresee all threats and vulnerabilities that surface in the process. In other words, the issue with enterprise security is that, by nature, it is reactive. No system or asset can ever be fully secure.



7 Cybersecurity Tips For Lawyers

Fri, 20 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

This past week, the world learned about the big hack of Biglaw. If your employer was one of the almost 50 firms prestigious enough to be targeted by Russian hackers… congrats?

The targeted firms tended to be transactionally oriented; the apparent plan of the hackers was to obtain confidential, market-moving information and trade on it. But litigators should be concerned as well. As noted by Logikcull, the discovery automation platform, ediscovery is the next frontier for hackers.

It’s not clear that any information was actually taken or used for insider trading in the big Biglaw hack, but it might still generate headaches for the firms — in the form of litigation. Noted class-action lawyer Jay Edelson — known to the general public for suing tech giants, and known to Above the Law readers for suing ExamSoft (and winning a hefty settlement) — has announced plans to file class-action malpractice cases against various firms, alleging inadequate cybersecurity.



Meeting Cyber Security Challenges through Gamification

Wed, 18 May 2016 09:00:50 -0400

When it comes to cybersecurity issues, we always seem to be dealing with either shortages or excess. Everywhere there is talk of how data breaches are growing in number, size, severity and cost, and there are always too many new security holes, vulnerabilities and attack vectors that need to be fixed.

On the other hand, there’s a widening cybersecurity talent gap to fill vacant posts. We never seem to have enough tools to deal with new threats and malware that are sprouting on a daily basis, and there’s not enough data to make smart assumptions and decisions (or in some cases, too much data and too many false positives to find the real threats). And awareness about security matters among employees, staffers and executives in firms, associations and agencies is always at abysmal levels.

With the dark shadow of bigger security incidents constantly looming on the horizon, both government agencies and private firms are always looking for new ways to meet the challenges and overcome the many shortages the cybersecurity industry is facing.



Looking to Improve Cyber Security? Fire some CEOs

Mon, 16 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

More than 90 percent of corporate executives said they cannot read a cybersecurity report and are not prepared to handle a major attack, according to a new survey.

More distressing is that 40 percent of executives said they don't feel responsible for the repercussions of hackings, said Dave Damato, chief security officer at Tanium, which commissioned the survey with the Nasdaq.



Better Cyber Security a must for Banking Sector

Sun, 15 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Strengthening cyber security in the banking sector is a must, especially with regular innovations happening in the ICT sector, analysts said yesterday.

Almost all banks launched online services without taking proper precautions, and most of their IT systems are outsourced from private vendors, said Mahbubur Rahman, associate professor of Bangladesh Institute of Bank Manage-ment.

Lack of skilled manpower is a major problem in the banking sector, said Omar Farooq, head of IT at Eastern Bank.

They spoke at a programme on cyber security organised by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) at Sonargaon Hotel in Dhaka.



Cyber Power

Fri, 13 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

The cyber revolution is at its height. The meeting point between the power of thought and connectivity is changing our world, and affecting all spheres of life, as individuals and as a nation. Israel's power in science and technology is creating a great opportunity to position ourselves in the forefront of cybernetic innovation.

Together with the opportunities, there are also risks. Everything is penetrable in the cyber era: our personal details, commercial and defense secrets, national infrastructure - anything can be stolen, disrupted and destroyed. The worst cyber attacks against organizations and countries in recent years around the world have taught us an obvious lesson - cyber defense is an essential condition for national security and economic growth in the 21st century.

Israel has been one of the first countries to prepare systematically and with determination for this challenge. Five years ago, I set the goal of making Israel one of the five leading global cyber powers.



5 Security Hacks That Simple Technology Could Have Prevented

Wed, 11 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Passwords, which are designed to create security, have become the weakness that hackers have used in 85 percent of hacks over the last decade. These breaches can be very costly. Lots of companies, for instance, have lost millions of dollars in the past because of it. Some individuals have had their identities stolen. Many celebrities have gotten their images damaged. Worse still, some vital and top secret government information has equally gotten exposed due to these security breaches.

As a result, there is a movement in the tech security industry to move away from password-based security altogether. Wiacts is one of the firms pushing this move.

In a recent blog post, they named the top 10 hacks that their tech would have prevented. I asked Yaser Masoudnia, their CEO, to comment on some of those hacks. And below are what he had to say about them:



Airports Look at Technology to Extend Security

Mon, 9 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

The mass casualties caused by last week’s attacks in Belgium are spurring interest in tools to enable police to spot suicide bombers and other potential attackers from afar—as well as a warning that technology alone isn’t a fail-safe.

The blasts in the departures hall at Brussels Airport, which killed at least 16 people, showed the contrast between the wide-open landside of airports and the tightly secured airside, after passengers and their bags have been screened.



Long security lines await at American airports this summer

Sun, 8 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Here is a maths question. If the number of people moving from point A to point B increases by 9%, and the number of gates they can pass through decreases by 10%, what happens to the time it takes for them to complete the process? On second thoughts, forget the maths. For airline passengers this summer, it is only important to know that it goes up. Way up.

This is essentially what has happened at Americas airports. In the past three years, the number of Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screeners has declined from 47,147 to 42,525. Over the same time period, the number of passengers has risen from 643m a year to more than 700m.



Police issue security warning over Santander cashpoints

Fri, 6 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Police have warned people in Lancashire and Wilmslow, Cheshire, not to use Santander cash machines over fears they have been compromised.

The warning follows reports of suspicious devices on the bank’s machines across Lancashire last week.

Officers are concerned that criminals have targeted the machines in an attempt to steal card details and cash, and urged those who have lost money to contact the bank.



Fallout From The Nuclear Security Summit

Wed, 4 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

The Nuclear Security Summit that just ended Friday in Washington, D.C. wrangled over several thorny nuclear proliferation and terrorism issues, and involved over 50 countries. But the two countries on everyone’s mind were China and Russia. China, because they have started on the world’s largest nuclear build-up in 50 years. And Russia, because they decided not to attend at all.

The fourth Nuclear Security Summit, in the series begun by the Obama administration, showcased definite successes, particularly the significant global reduction in nuclear weapons, the global reduction in nuclear material stockpiles, the increased security on nuclear facilities, the dozen countries that are now free of weapons-grade materials, a newly-amended nuclear protection treaty, and the historic nuclear deal with Iran that has, so far, gone as planned.



How security pros blunted alleged Iran cyber attacks

Mon, 2 May 2016 09:00:00 -0400

New criminal charges linking Iran to 2011-2013 cyber attacks on the U.S. put suspects' names and faces on an episode that plagued 46 banks and financial institutions nationwide — and hundreds of thousands of their customers.

Account holders who logged in online encountered blank screens, dropped connections or extremely slow responses, security experts said in interviews Thursday, hours after authorities announced indictments of seven suspects with ties to the Middle East nation's government and its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.



Google Beefs Up Its Gmail Security Features

Fri, 29 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Google is rolling out an updated security warning system this week for Gmail users that the company says is designed to make sure they do not fall victim to cyber attacks.

The first security warning will be triggered when a user clicks on a link in Gmail that Google suspects to be dangerous.

A second enhancement gives suspected targets of state-sponsored hacking attempts a full-page warning along with information on how to protect their accounts. The new full-page alert is in addition to Googles existing warning, which shows up as a red strip with a link at the top of a suspected victims Gmail page.

Suspected state-sponsored hacking attempts are rare and impact 0.1 percent of Gmail users, according to Google's online security blog.



Telecom Partners Say Cloud Security Is Top Of Mind In Wake Of Verizon Breach

Wed, 27 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Verizon Enterprise Solutions is the latest victim of a data breach that affected more than a million of its enterprise customers, news that partners believe will have wide-ranging implications on telecom and cloud security solutions.

First reported by security journalist Brian Krebs, the breach allowed hackers to collect information on an estimated 1.5 million enterprise clients, including basic contact information. Verizon said in the report that no customer proprietary network information or other data was accessed. The data was found for sale on an underground cyberforum.



New Research Grants for Stevens Total More than $5 Million; Focus on Homeland Security, Defense and Cybersecurity

Mon, 25 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

The number of research grants awarded to Stevens Institute of Technology since February 1 total more than $5 million, with the bulk of the awards coming from the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

The largest award ($2.75 million) came from the DHS to support a multi-year program to develop and deploy a system of sensors that would defeat small and medium Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), commonly known as drones, to protect critical infrastructure and people. The Stevens research team, led by Dr. Hady Salloum, director of the DHS S&T Center of Excellence for Maritime Security at Stevens, will provide key elements of this program, including the development of a test bed, development and demonstration of an acoustic sensor solution, and contributions to other program efforts including modeling and simulation.



BitQuick Taken Offline

Fri, 22 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Security is one of the major concerns when it comes to the bitcoin industry. There have been so many instances where the security of bitcoin platforms was breached by hackers, making away with loads of bitcoin. The history has taught bitcoin businesses not to compromise on the security of their products, as it may end up causing some serious damage to their reputation. Even with bitcoin exchanges and wallet providers implementing the best security features, they still face the threat.



Machine Learning and Security

Wed, 20 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) are in the spotlight. Not only did funding in AI companies reach records heights last year, but we’re seeing it positioned as an antidote to improve just about every facet of our lives and businesses—from how we travel, to how we shop, to our health care. Big players like Microsoft and Google are also getting into the game, releasing open source frameworks to make taking advantage of machine learning a whole lot easier.



Websites Lack Security

Mon, 18 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Every time you PayPal someone, or send a Gmail, or log into Facebook, a layer of encryption protects the information that zips across the Internet. These sites all use HTTPS, an added layer of security to the standard HTTP protocol that facilitates web communication. But as a new Google report shows, an alarmingly small number of the webs most-trafficked sites use this vital security protocol.

The Google audit shows that 79 of the webs top 100 non-Google sites don’t deploy HTTPS by default, while 67 of those use either outdated encryption technology or offer none at all. The worst offenders include big names, like the New York Times and IMDB.



UK Workers more Diligent about Cyber Security at Home

Fri, 15 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

UK employees expect an IT safety net to protect them at work and are more willing to take responsibility for security at home, a survey commissioned by Citrix has revealed

More than four in 10 UK workers regularly use passwords to secure home documents, but only one in three do so at work, a survey has revealed.

In a further sign of disparity in employee attitudes to work and personal data, 68% of workers said they shredded unwanted personal documents, while just 40% do so at work, according to a poll of 2,000 full-time workers in the UK commissioned by secure access firm Citrix.



Pay with Your Face? Amazon Tech Brings Security Questions

Wed, 13 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Amazon may be looking at ways to let you pay for purchases with just a look. But experts warn that such systems have proven easy to fool in the past.

In a new patent application — U.S. patent No. 20,160,071,111, filed on March 10 — the company described a system that would let a user authorize a purchase using two things: an image of the persons face and a live motion to check that the image is actually the owner of the phone.



Security Solutions are Slowing Down our Systems

Mon, 11 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

Despite the inherent insecurities of the cybersecurity industry, a new report from Barkly, an endpoint security company, reveals that the biggest issue IT security teams have to face with current security solutions is that they slow down the system.

When asked about the options of productivity vs security and the potential downfalls of security solutions, 41 percent of respondents said that they were dissatisfied with their current solution, not because it failed to deliver security, but because it slows down their system.


If security products are slowing systems and by extension lowering productivity, then IT pros should consider whether or not their colleagues are taking insecure shortcuts to improve efficiency, such as using unauthorized third-party apps or connecting unsanctioned devices to the network.



Computers Can Be Hacked to Send Data as Sound Waves

Fri, 8 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0400

A team of security researchers has demonstrated the ability to hijack standard equipment inside computers, printers and millions of other devices in order to send information out of an office through sound waves.

The attack program takes control of the physical prongs on general-purpose input/output circuits and vibrates them at a frequency of the researchers' choosing, which can be audible or not. The vibrations can be picked up with an AM radio antenna a short distance away.




Uber Has a Secret Security Hotline

Wed, 6 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0500

If you are having an emergency in an Uber, theres a secret hotline to get in touch with them, according to Business Insider.

A secret hotline that Uber has been denying exists–it does not call it a hotline–does not sound very useful, but the company now says has been tested in 22 cities around the country.

The hotline is 800-353-8237 (UBER), and customers who call that number in an emergency will go directly to a customer service human being.



Inkjet Can Spoof Mobile Fingerprint Security

Mon, 4 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0500

Researchers have spoofed biometric fingerprint security in two models of mobile phone using nothing more than an inkjet printer.

The fingerprint is a popular method of identification due to the fact that there are no two identical fingerprints among the seven billion people on the planet, but it is by no means impregnable.



The Cloud and Security

Fri, 1 Apr 2016 09:00:00 -0500

Security concerns are undoubtedly the major hurdle for widespread cloud adoption; indeed, a massive 90 percent of firms surveyed by Information Security in 2015 stated security was the biggest factor preventing organizations from moving to the cloud. No one is about to wave a magic wand in 2016 and make that go away.



Intel Security Guru Says Regulating Encryption Is Difficult

Wed, 30 Mar 2016 09:00:00 -0500

Encrypting digital data should not be considered a moral issue of good and evil. Rather, it is a nuanced legal issue that may not be covered under existing law.

Thats one of the takeaways from a discussion about cybersecurity and data with Steve Grobman, the chief technology officer for Intels security group. Grobman explained during the Structure Data conference in San Francisco on Thursday that encryption is really just complex mathematics, which makes it a difficult thing to legislate.



Tips When Running a Security Company

Mon, 28 Mar 2016 09:00:00 -0500

The dump, in a hacker e-zine format, begins with a note from the attacker. Sarcastically titled TIPS WHEN RUNNING A SECURITY COMPANY, it details the security holes found during the breach:

Use one root password for all the boxes
Expose PDUs [power distribution units in server racks] to WAN with telnet auth
Never patch, upgrade or audit the stack
Disregard PDO [PHP Data Objects] as inconvenient
Hedge entire business on security theatre
Store full credit card info in plaintext
Write all code with wreckless [sic] abandon



Wells Fargo Eye Scanning

Sat, 26 Mar 2016 09:00:00 -0500

Eye scanners have long been the stuff of sci-fi and action flicks, safeguarding everything from classified data to secret lairs.

Soon, though, they'll be used in the real world to protect something more mundane: your bank account. Or, more precisely, your company's much larger one.

Starting this summer, San Francisco banking giant Wells Fargo & Co. will let corporate clients sign in to the bank's commercial banking app using either an eye scan [pictured above] or a face- and voice-recognition system.



Android Security

Thu, 24 Mar 2016 09:00:00 -0500

Highlights of the March 2016 Android Security Update

There are 16 issues in the update: 6 are Critical, 8 are High, and 2 are Moderate. The vulnerabilities I list below illustrate the variety of fixes Google has patched this month.

Critical vulnerabilities

The security updates range from privilege vulnerabilities, remote code execution vulnerabilities, remote denial of service vulnerabilities, and mitigation bypass vulnerabilities.

The most critical issue was remote code execution vulnerabilities in Mediaserver and libvpx. The flaw could have allowed a third party to use MMS media or browser playback media to execute malicious code on either a smartphone or a tablet. Google has released fixes for all iterations of Android, going back to 4.4.4.

Elevation of Privilege in Conscrypt: This vulnerability could allow a specific type of invalid certificate (one issued by an intermediate Certificate Authority) to be incorrectly trusted. This particular vulnerability would allow man-in-the-middle attacks, as well as an elevation of privilege and remote arbitrary code execution.

Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability in MediaTek Wi-Fi Kernel Driver: The Wi-Fi kernel driver contained a vulnerability that could enable a local malicious application to execute arbitrary code within the kernel, thus allowing elevation of privilege.



Chrome Update Patches Some Major Security Vulnerabilities

Tue, 22 Mar 2016 09:00:00 -0500

This week, Google released the latest stable update for its Chrome browser addressing three high priority security vulnerabilities. Version 49.0.2623.87 of Chrome is available now for Windows, Mac and Linux computers, and although Google is not willing to discuss the fixes in detail, a recent blog post explains the basics of the bu



IRS Shutdown Identity Protection PIN Tool

Sun, 20 Mar 2016 09:00:00 -0500

The IRS has issued a notice about the temporary suspension of use of its Identity Protection PIN tool. According to the notice, the use of the IP PIN tool on the IRS.gov site has been suspended as part of its ongoing security review. It has announced a possible security breach.

A recent attack on the website that resulted in the breach of an IRS contractors system—exposing 101,000 taxpayers Social Security numbers and other data—prompted an IRS security review. The IRS designed the Identity Protection PIN tool to safeguard people at higher risk of becoming the victims of fraud because of sensitive personal information leaked in commercial data breaches, by providing them an additional layer of security. Instead, the tool was being used by the scammers for the very purpose of identity theft.



Hackers Breach Ku Klux Klan Website

Fri, 18 Mar 2016 01:59:00 -0500

A website run by the Ku Klux Klan has been downed as part of what appears to be a significant breach of its host and security provider Staminus. The company, which promises to protect users from distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, was exposed by a crew going by the name of FTA, which leaked data online yesterday.

Dumped information included customer contact details and password hashes (the result of taking the plain text password on running it through a one-way algorithm to garble the text). The hackers also claimed to have accessed unencrypted credit card details, though FORBES could not verify that claim.



Where European Countries Stand on Privacy Versus Security

Thu, 17 Mar 2016 09:00:00 -0500

In the wake of the San Bernardino shootings that left 14 people dead and 22 others wounded, the debate over encryption between tech companies and law enforcement has reached a fever pitch in the US. The FBI wants Apple to help it crack into the iPhone of Syed Rizwan Farook who, along with wife Tashfeen Malik, carried out the ISIS-inspired attack in December.

Apple has refused, saying that its job is to protect the privacy of its customers. The company contends that the debate should not be framed as privacy or security, but privacy and security. With both sides digging in their heels, the case looks destined for the Supreme Court. Meanwhile, lawmakers in some European countries are taking new steps to broaden government access to big data.

European countries have different stances on digital security, but generally are more willing than the U.S. to grant governments access to personal data.



Security Problems in Prisons

Wed, 16 Mar 2016 09:00:00 -0500

Correctional officers in state prisons may soon be using pepper spray to quell potential fights with and among inmates.

They are deploying portable metal detectors to better ferret out homemade knives.

And they plan to cut the use of canned goods in prison commissaries, thus denying troublemakers the use of sharp metal lids that can be turned into weapons.

Despite these increased security efforts, lawmakers had plenty of questions during a budget hearing Thursday for Acting Corrections and Community Supervision Commissioner Anthony Annucci.