• Will China Retaliate Against U.S. Chip Sanctions?

    In response to a series of Chinese trade infractions (intellectual property theft, forced technology transfers, cyber espionage, and WTO violations), the U.S. government implemented a sanctions regime which has inflicted increasing pain on China’s semiconductor industry. The Biden administration has doubled down on the Trump’s sanction strategy against China’s high-tech sector. Terry Daly and Jordan Schneider write that China has so far abstained from taking major retaliatory measures against the United States, but this is not likely to last. “The prudent course in a period of uncertainty is risk mitigation. This applies to countries and companies alike,” Daly and Schneider write.

  • Did the Cybersecurity Workforce Gap Distract Us from the Leak?

    There are 500,000 unfilled cybersecurity positions in the United States, and the number is growing. The government and private companies have been investing a lot of money and effort in training and recruiting young cybertalent through college programs, school partnerships, and by adjusting pay and benefit packages, but many have missed a significant leak in cyber workforce funnel: the rapid burnout and churn. In fact, the cyber workforce gap is in experienced roles, not junior levels. To fill the cyber workforce gap, we need to find ways to retain experienced cybersecurity talent.

  • Understanding the U.K. Cybersecurity Labor Market

    The U.K. government is carrying out research to help understand and measure the U.K. cybersecurity labor market. This will help inform future policy and strategy.

  • Infrastructure for a Changing Climate

    As the U.S. debates whether and how to invest in its infrastructure, a lot is at stake, said Mariette diChristina, dean of the College of Communication at Boston University. “Infrastructure is built to last for decades — sometimes even a hundred years or more — so what we decide to do today will have a large effect on how things go tomorrow, including how we adapt to or mitigate climate change in the future.”

  • Making Infrastructure Pay Off

    James M. Poterba, an MIT economist, advocates for cost-benefit analyses of projects, finds that repairing infrastructure often pays off more than new projects, and suggests that infrastructure user fees be considered as a source of financing for projects. He argues that the value in repairs, upgrades, and user fees to help fund projects has been overlooked.

  • EU Agrees on Global Infrastructure Plan to Rival China’s Belt and Road Initiative

    On Monday the EU announced an ambitious global infrastructure plan which aims to counter China’s Belt and Road Initiative. Western governments fear that China’s project encourages countries to take on large Chinese loans which can turn into “debt traps,” allowing China to leverage these debts for political purposes. Monday’s initiative continues a recent phase of greater assertiveness by the EU towards China.

  • Closing the Skills Gap in the Cyber Workforce

    There are currently more than three million unfilled cybersecurity jobs globally, and, as high-profile incidents like the Solar Winds attack demonstrate, it is vital to address that shortage. But it is difficult for organizations to find and recruit the cyber talent they need.

  • Bipartisan Legislation Addresses Dams’ Safety, Hydropower

    There are more than 90,000 dams in the U.S., including 6,000 “high-hazard” dams with poor, unsatisfactory, or unknown safety ratings, posing threats to life and property. Hydropower is responsible for 6 percent of electricity production in the U.S.— and more than 90 percent of the U.S. current electricity storage capacity — but the dams which generate this power are aging and need upgrades.

  • Creating More Resilient Supply Chains Through Nature-Inspired Design

    Supply chains work a lot like food webs in natural ecosystems, in which biodiversity allows for adaptation during disruptions. The analogy turned out to be relevant particularly in looking at “black swan” events, which are unpredictable and hard to protect against—and for which adaptation, not prevention, is the main defense.

  • Can Europe Escape Gazprom's Energy Stranglehold?

    When it comes to gas supplies to the EU, Russia’s state-owned corporation Gazprom steps on the brakes, and natural gas reservoirs are unusually low. Is Russia building up political pressure in order to push through the operation of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline?

  • The Kaseya Ransomware Attack Is a Really Big Deal

    If you’re not already paying attention to the Kaseya ransomware incident, you should be. Matt Tait writes that it is likely the most important cybersecurity event of the year. “Bigger than the Exchange hacks by China in January. Bigger than the Colonial Pipeline ransomware incident. And, yes, more important than the SolarWinds intrusions last year.”

  • Holding the World to Ransom: The Top 5 Most Dangerous Criminal Organizations Online Right Now

    Ransomware attacks are growing exponentially in size and ransom demand — changing the way we operate online. Understanding who these groups are and what they want is critical to taking them down. Here, we list the top five most dangerous criminal organizations currently online. As far as we know, these rogue groups aren’t backed or sponsored by any state.

  • U.S. Freight Railroads Bolstered Supply Chain Resilience during Pandemic

    Despite the particularly volatile, pandemic-driven period, railroads met consumers’ and businesses’ unexpected surge of demands, reliably delivering goods such as agricultural products, personal protective equipment and online retail merchandise and ultimately highlighting the rail industry’s role as an essential component of the U.S. economy.

  • Producing Geothermal Energy Diminishes Earthquake Risk

    Researchers studying the 5 July 2019 magnitude-7.1 earthquake in Ridgecrest, California found that none of the thousands recorded aftershocks in the region were seen in the Coso geothermal field, an area only about ten kilometers away. Now they know why: The development of geothermal energy reduces underground stress and mitigates risks of large earthquakes.

  • Full Impact of Russian Ransomware Attack Hard to Estimate

    Hackers associated with the REvil gang, a major Russian ransomware syndicate have demanded $70 million in Bitcoin in exchange for a decryption tool to free the data of companies targeted, but also indicated they were willing to negotiate.