• Brivo: using the Internet to control, secure devices

    Cloud computing offers efficiency and economy — but the Achilles Heel of the technology is security; Brivo uses software as a service (SaaS)-based physical access control systems (PACS) to leverage the power and versatility of the Internet to provide real-time device control for organizations that need to protect buildings and facilities

  • GAO finds critical shortfalls in cyber security guidelines for smart grid

    The GAO issued a report that found critical shortfalls in the proposed guidelines for modernizing the smart grid; the proposed guidelines, released by NIST and the FERC, contained several shortcomings that would leave the nation’s security grid vulnerable to cyber attack; “missing pieces” in the guideline include a lack of metrics to evaluate cyber security, no enforcement mechanisms, and no coordination of disjointed oversight bodies; NIST and FERC agreed with the findings and is moving to address them in their next set of guidelines

  • Cyber Security Challenge finalists shortlisted

    The nation-wide U.K. Cyber Security Challenge held the first round of competition over the weekend, with two teams making it through to the finals; the industry-sponsored Challenge aims to entice young people into choosing cyber security as a career and to find great IT talent that could be put to use for defending U.K.’s cyber infrastructure

  • Fears of cyberwar exaggerated: report

    New report says that analysis of cyber-security issues has been weakened by the lack of agreement on terminology and the use of exaggerated language; the report says online attacks are unlikely ever to have global significance on the scale of, say, a disease pandemic or a run on the banks; the authors say, though, that “localized misery and loss” could be caused by a successful attack on the Internet’s routing structure, which governments must ensure are defended with investment in cyber-security training

  • Israel, with U.S. help, tested Stuxnet at Dimona before attacking Iran

    The New York Times quoted intelligence and military experts to say that U.S. and Israeli intelligence services collaborated to develop a destructive computer worm to sabotage Iran’s efforts to make a nuclear bomb; the Stuxnet computer worm shut down a fifth of Iran’s nuclear centrifuges in November and helped delay its ability to make its first nuclear weapons; before using Stuxnet to attack Iran’s nuclear program, Israel has tested the effectiveness of the malware at the heavily guarded Dimona complex in the Negev desert which houses Israel’s undeclared — and the Middle East’s sole — nuclear weapons program

  • Estonia considers draft for newly created cyber army in emergency

    Estonia just announced the creation of an all-volunteer cyber army; the Cyber Defense League unites computer experts from the private sector and the government; the League conducts regular drills and operates under a unified military command; Estonian defense officials are contemplating instituting a cyber expert draft in the event of a serious national crisis; Estonia is the first country to experience a cyber war — in 2007 Russian hackers, suspected of having been directed by the Russian military, systematically shut down major government, financial, political and news Web sites

  • Android phones more vulnerable to cyber attacks than Apple iPhone

    Android smart phones are more susceptible to hacking and viruses than Apple’s iPhone; the Android operating system is open source, allowing hackers to understand the underlying code; Apple iPhone may have a safer operating system, but it is not impervious to attacks; McAfee warns that 2011 will see hackers increasingly target mobile devices like Android phones, iPads, and iPhones

  • NEC releases software that configures access policy automatically

    NEC Corporation announced the development of technology that collectively distributes and configures access policy to a variety of computing resources in a cloud computing environment; the newly-developed technology helps to reduce operation costs and to improve security

  • Government IT contractors remain optimistic about future

    Government services and information technology (IT) contractors remain optimistic about future growth; the defense industry still remains as “an $800 billion marketplace,” despite budget cuts and an increasing move by the federal government to insource contracts; IT firms are particularly positive about growth in key areas like cyber security, intelligence, and simulation; federal spending on cyber security is projected to reach $13.3 billion annually by 2015

  • Quick Heal introduces technology to track laptops

    New laptop tracking technology will help Indian police track and locate stolen laptops across the country; Quick Heal, the company offering the technology, also aims to create a centralized database of lost or stolen laptops; the database will be accessible to retailers and consumers

  • Obama pushing for Internet ID for Americans

    The Obama administration is currently drafting what it is calling the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace, which will give the Commerce Department the authority over a forthcoming cybersecurity effort to create an Internet ID for Americans

  • Sourcefire expands westward

    Maryland-based Sourcefire acquires Palo Alto-based Immunet for $21 million, expanding the company’s cybersecurity services; the acquisition will allow Sourcefire to accelerate its cloud-based initiative and provide a platform to expand its security services

  • Smart system to teach itself to jam new wireless threats

    As wireless communication devices become more adaptive and responsive to their environment by using technology such as Dynamic Spectrum Allocation, the effectiveness of fixed countermeasures may become severely degraded; DARPA wants smart system that can learn to jam new wireless threats automatically

  • China makes Skype illegal

    China announced that it had made illegal the use of Skype, the popular internet telephony service, as the country continues to shut itself off from the rest of the world

  • U.S. federal investment in cybersecurity to reach $13.3 billion by 2015

    U.S. federal investment in information security will rise from $8.6 billion in 2010 to $13.3 billion by 2015 at a compound annual growth rate of 9.1 percent, nearly twice the rate of overall federal IT spending