Archive for February, 2014
From: Breaking Defense
By Colin Clark
CAPITOL HILL: On the day that China’s president took personal charge of his country’s new cyber body, pledging to make the People’s Republic of China a “cyber power,” the outgoing head of America’s Cyber Command laid out a clear red line that, if crossed, could lead to war.
“If it destroys government or other networks, I think it would cross that line,” Army Gen. Keith Alexander, head of both Cyber Command and the National Security Agency, told the Senate Armed Services Committee today when asked what level of cyber “attack” would potentially cause America to go to war.
From: Voice of America
SAO PAULO — Brazilian hackers are threatening to disrupt the World Cup with attacks ranging from jamming websites to data theft, adding cyber warfare to the list of challenges for a competition already marred by protests, delays and overspending.
In a country with rampant online crime, a challenging telecommunications infrastructure and little experience with cyber attacks, authorities are rushing to protect government websites and those of FIFA, soccer’s governing body.
BOSTON: A cybersecurity firm said on Tuesday that it uncovered stolen credentials from some 360 million accounts that are available for sale on cyber black markets, though it is unsure where they came from or what they can be used to access.
The discovery could represent more of a risk to consumers and companies than stolen credit card data because of the chance the sets of user names and passwords could open the door to online bank accounts, corporate networks, health records and virtually any other type of computer system.
From: The Guardian
BlackBerry chief executive brings the company back to its business roots, focusing on secure messaging and a new phone that features the ‘classic’ trademark trackpad and keyboard
Samuel Gibbs in Barcelona
BlackBerry is working with Chinese manufacturing company Foxconn to produce a new, cheaper smartphone that will sell for under $200, it was announced on Tuesday.
The chief executive John Chen told the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona that the Z3 will launch in Indonesia in April, and that it was built in just three months instead of the usual 12.
In news accounts of cyber attacks plaguing computer networks around the world, the bad actors are almost always the same – faceless adversaries hailing from shadowy regions of Asia and Eastern Europe.
But what if the issue was examined from the other direction, from the perspective of people living in countries identified as launching pads for the world’s hacking attacks?
New research by security firm Lookout shows that when it comes to cyber threats, countries reap what countries sow.
Editor’s Note: To read about the Center for Regulatory Effectiveness’s work enhancing federal cyber security transparency, see the Internet Architecture Board’s (IAB) comments to NIST in the matter of the NIST Special Publication 800-90A (Recommendation for Random Number Generation Using Deterministic Random Bit Generators) review proceeding here and CRE’s comments on NIST Special Publication 800-137 Information Security Continuous Monitoring for Federal Information Systems and Organizations here.
Feedback Sought on Development Process
By Eric Chabrow
Because of concerns of possible National Security Agency meddling with its cryptographic standards, the National Institute of Standards and Technology has issued a draft report proposing revisions in how it develops cryptographic standards.
From: The Wall Street Journal
Cybersecurity Experts Find Trove of Information on File-Sharing Web Site
By Rachael King
Computer-security researchers have discovered on a website documents that could allow hackers easily to obtain electronic medical records and payment information from health-care providers.
The documents—found by two cybersecurity firms on a site commonly used by hackers—detail the type of equipment used in computer networks, the Internet addresses for computers and other devices, and the passwords to network firewalls run by health-care providers such as nursing homes, doctors’ offices and hospitals.
Time: 17-18 February
Place: Tartu, Estonia
Organisers: NATO CCD COE and the University of Tartu, in cooperation with the Baltic Yearbook of International Law, Estonian Foreign Policy Institute and Stockton Center for the Study of International Law at the US Naval War College
Participation: Only for invited individuals
Workshop proceedings will be published in the 2014 Baltic Yearbook of International Law.
FOCUS: Most companies will have an information security breach in most years, so businesses should focus on preparing for incidents, because they are inevitable.
The increase in the volume of data that businesses now store; the growing use of mobile devices, and the trend of users connecting their own devices to corporate networks are factors making data breaches more likely. And proposed changes to EU law mean that organisations will no longer be able to keep breaches a secret.
From: The Algemeiner
Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, sent a message to the country’s university students to prepare for cyber war, according to Iran’s semi-official government news agency Mehr , on Wednesday. The radical cleric also referred to cyber-war as “a demanding field,” according to the report.
“You are the cyber-war agents and such a war requires Ammar-like insight and Malik Ashtar-like (two Prophet’s Companions in early Islamic history) resistance; get yourselves ready for such war wholeheartedly,” his message said.