Hacking for asymmetry in military capabilities

After completing school, like all fellow countrymen my age, I was conscripted into the South African army. While coerced into military servitude my time was split between being trained in infantry combat and working on the Defence HQ computer system. This was a world of punch cards and mainframes, before the invention of the PC. In those days, the only hacking we knew was how to use a 10 cent diode to get free calls on a payphone. While the army taught me about bits and bytes, my colleagues made a conventional force ground incursion deep into Angolan territory. Once there, they discovered to their chagrin, an important asymmetry between the enemy’s Cuban-piloted MIG fighters and our own French-built Mirage jets. Without vital supremacy in the air, our ground troops were in some danger.
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Securing the “God Platform” in IoT

Forbes magazine coined the term “god platform”. At the nucleus of IoT is a Command Centre that provides the user interface, data storage and sharing junction. The million dollar question is how to secure the “god platform” and the IoT ecosystem.
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I am Shrödinger’s cat

I live in Austria with my owner Shrödi – Mr Shrödinger as everyone else calls him – and he is a really cool guy. He talks about me quite a bit. Shrödi told me that I will become famous as he has even had a chat with Einstein about me. Yes, that Einstein – Albert – my owner Shrödi is mates with Albert.
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Everything glitters for IoT gold

Aspects of the California gold rush of 1849, and the oil rush in Pennsylvania ten years later followed by similar events at Spindletop, Texas in 1901, are being repeated today as large companies rush to stake their claim in the rapidly emerging IoT world. Recognising the hugely lucrative potential of IoT, the largest information technology companies in the world are rapidly developing and acquiring technology in order to own a piece of the landscape.
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Don’t mess with encryption, Mr Cameron

After a spectacular election win for the Conservative Party, there is now concern that UK authorities will tamper with encryption. Back in January, on a visit to the US, David Cameron indicated his strong desire for intelligence agencies such as GCHQ, to have the capability to eavesdrop on encrypted communications.
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Real-time attack maps mere eye candy

Walking around the exhibition halls of the RSA conference in San Francisco last week, I couldn’t help noticing the prevalence of real-time attack maps. You know, the colourful geographic maps showing digital attacks around the world in real time, like this one, or this one, or this one. The maps show for example, source country, destination country, source organisation and destination organisation, attack type and size, etc. Some resemble a control panel designed for Tom Cruise in a global domination game.
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Securing the Internet of Things – the Command Centre is cardinal

There is much anticipation about the impending growth explosion of devices in the Internet of Things (IoT). Apparently our lives are about to be inundated with connected devices such as the Dash Button, a learning thermostat, and security cameras that stream to our smartphone. Interconnectivity will improve the functionality of many of these devices. Our alarm clock for example can perhaps do a better job with inputs from our diary and traffic conditions.
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I am a garage door in the Internet of Things (IoT)

I got into this line of work because I like the physicality of the job. A couple of times a day, my boss Jack, presses a button and I spring into action, lifting the heavy double-garage door at a nice steady pace, and then lowering it gently after he has driven in or out. Jack is a bit of a yuppie, and I work in a lovely home – it is a pleasure doing the heavy lifting for Jack each day. I get my kicks from being reliable and consistent, and a daily physical workout is simply a perk of the job.
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Security implications of 5G

The chatter around the halls of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona last week indicates growing enthusiasm for the Fifth Generation (5G) mobile network. Every ten years or so sees a new generation mobile network. The first generation, 1G, used an analogue signal and was launched in 1981. 2G commenced in 1991 and utilised GSM with data speeds up to 64kbps. 2G introduced SMS and MMS. 3G was launched 10 years later in 2001 and introduced smartphones and 2 Mbps data speeds. 3G was the start of web-based applications and video files. Today we have 4G, launched in 2012 with up to 1 Gbps data speeds and mobile broadband everywhere.
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CISO – a million dollar role

The Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) role is undergoing big change in many organisations. Driven by high-profile breaches, a greater appreciation of the true value of information assets, more vulnerabilities such as those on mobile and in the cloud, more sophisticated threats such as APTs, and a close link between digitisation and cyberspace and the success of the enterprise. There is concern in boardrooms about potential catastrophic reputation and revenue loss from cyber incidents. No board wants to be the next Target, Sony Entertainment or Anthem. With the viability of the entire organisation at stake, the CISO is now a critical member of the senior team.
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