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Search Tags: The Cyber Security Report
A longtime adviser to the U.S. Director of National Intelligence has resigned after the government learned he has worked since 2010 as a paid consultant for Huawei Technologies Ltd., the Chinese technology company the U.S. has condemned as an espionage threat. Theodore H. Moran, a professor at Georgetown University, had served since 2007 as adviser to the intelligence director's advisory panel on foreign investment in the United States. Moran also was an adviser to the National Intelligence Council, a group of 18 senior analysts and policy experts who provide U.S. spy agencies with judgments on important international issues.
You've heard of email and snail mail - but what about jail mail? It is something that will soon be on the way to some inmates at the Pasco County Jail in Florida. Sheriff Chris Nocco says 77 kiosks are being set up in the jail housing units. The set-ups will let inmates read and send email to those who have approved accounts. The sheriff says there will be no cost to taxpayers for the service. While inmates will be able to get email and photos, they will only be able to send email, not photos. And - as is the case with regular mail, deputies will be monitoring inmates email.
Budget cuts notwithstanding, the U.S. Air Force plans to add 1,000 new personnel between 2014 and 2016 as part of its cyber security units. The 24th Air Force at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas is home to the U.S. Air Force cyber command. With a budget of about $1 billion and a staff of roughly 400 military and civilian personnel, the command oversees about 6,000 cyber defense personnel throughout the Air Force.
Companies planning to bring aboard some new staff should rethink their secret use of social networking Web sites, like Facebook, to screen new recruits. William Stoughton of North Carolina State University, lead author of a study published in Springer's Journal of Business and Psychology, indicated in his work this practice is viewed by some as a breach of privacy and could create a negative impression of the company for potential employees. This type of spying could even lead to law suits.
Mandiant, the Virginia-based cyber-security firm than pinpointed a hacking unit in Shanghai that experts believe is part of the Chinese Army's cyber command has been sold. FireEye said that the purchase of privately held Mandiant would increase its ability to stop attacks in their early stages. The company valued the deal at nearly $1 billion.
The Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) said hacked into Skype's social media accounts last week. Now the Internet calling service confirms it had been hit with a "cyber-attack" but said no user information was compromised. SEA posted a tweet posted on Skype's official Twitter feed that read: "Don't use Microsoft emails (hotmail, outlook). They are monitoring your accounts and selling the data to the governments. More details soon. #SEA"
What's the best thing you can do for your computer? Make sure that it's secure. Kaspersky Lab says you should don't invite bugs and malware in by allowing your computer systems to become outdated. The security company urges you to install operating system and application updates as soon as they're available. It also suggests using your software's built-in systems, and don't ignore the prompts they give you to update your computer security.
With so much gloom and doom about Cyber vulnerabilities, the Rand Corporation has some good news. In his book Cyberdeterrence and Cyber war, Martin Libicki puts it into perspective --suggesting Cyberspace has its own laws; for instance, it is easy to hide identities and difficult to predict or even understand battle damage, and attacks deplete themselves quickly. But the overall message is… cyber war is nothing so much as the manipulation of ambiguity.
Recently several large U.S. companies were hacked online and like other victims of similar attacks, they were not aware until well after the attack happened. In some cases it was months. Online security firm Mandiant says, often attacks are blamed on malware, but they say 46% of compromised machines have no malware on them. Mandiant says hackers can navigate through conventional safeguards easily leaving little or no trace.
Devices such as smartphones and tablets are being used more and more often for online shopping and the Center for Internet Security is warning that means the volume of attacks against them will increase as well. The "center" says every time you download an app, you open yourself to potential vulnerabilities. Their advice is to research those apps you plan to download to verify their legitimacy. Update all apps when notified and disable Bluetooth and Near Field Communications when not in use to reduce the risk of your data, such as a credit card number, being intercepted by a nearby device.