February 26, 2012    /    by

When Do Social Networks Become a Burden?

How many online social networks have you joined? I'm starting to wonder if there are too many social media sites that I participate in. Is a backlash coming?

  How many online social networks have you joined? There’s the basic list (sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter) as well as conference interaction websites, Intranet sites at work, online magazine communities, professional association portals, security and technology topical sites (like ‘mobile security’ or ‘cybersecurity for government cloud computing’ within sites like LinkedIn) and so many more.

  Whether we’re discussing work, home, family, sports, kids, church or all of the above, the logons can start to add up. They all want us to engage in new (or more) conversation. Once you’re engaged, it can be tough to disengage. READ MORE

February 18, 2012    /    by

Defining Cyber FUD: The Bad, The Good and The Ugly

FUD is a complicated topic. FUD can be your friend or your worst enemy. It can light a fire under cyber initiatives, or end a career. It can influence decisions in the middle of a crisis. Regardless of the story, FUD is important to master and thats not just hype.

Just in case you haven’t been paying close attention to tech headlines lately or you’ve been totally distracted by Jeremy Lin’s unexpected NBA exploits (also known as Linsanity) or you’ve become turned-off by the constant barrage of bad news related to computer hackers, this has been another bad week in the headlines for cybersecurity. Perhaps, somehow, you’ve missed the latest scary cyber news.

If this describes you, here is a mini-sample of the top news stories that the security industry has been hammered with over the past week: READ MORE

February 7, 2012    /    by

Cyber Training: Are All the Best Technology & Security Conferences Out of State?

It's that time of year when my email in-box starts filling up with invitations to events surrounding the RSA conference in San Francisco. Nevertheless, some of my best experiences have been at security and technology conferences near home.

   It’s that time of year when my email in-box starts filling up with invitations to events surrounding the RSA conference in San Francisco. Whether from vendors, current friends, former colleagues or other security pros who just want to connect, the new offers seem to get more creative every year. There are huge parties, forums, get-togethers, breakfasts and even totally separate conferences (or one-day workshops) running at the same time or before the event.

Of course, the assumption – no, the strong expectation – is that you’ll be in San Fran that week. If you write back that you’re not going this year, the surprised response is always some rendition of “Is everything ok?”  Some of you are probably wondering that about me now – no, I'm not going in 2012 and yes, everything is fine. READ MORE

January 30, 2012    /    by

DMARC Should Reduce Phishing Scams

Major technology vendors announced the formation of the Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) system today. This new email authentication framework should reduce the number of phishing scams that try to trick users into thinking emails are from someone else.

Major technology vendors announced the formation of the Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) system today. This new email authentication framework should reduce the number of phishing scams that try to trick users into thinking emails are from someone else. Participating vendors, many of which provide free email services, aim to make spoofed domains in messages a thing of the past.

Leading technology companies like Google, Microsoft, AOL and Facebook are participating in the system – which is explained and can be examined in detail at DMARC.org. Here is a quote from the new website: READ MORE

January 25, 2012    /    by

Anti-Piracy Legislation Protests Continue: FTC Cyber Awareness Site Down

The Federal Trade Commissions website at www.onguardonline.gov remained down for a second day after it had suffered a security breach.

The Federal Trade Commission’s website at www.onguardonline.gov remained down for a second day after it had suffered a security breach. According to Government Computer News (GCN.com), the group Anonymous hacked the site in protest over proposed anti-piracy laws and recent anti-piracy arrests.

Here’s a quote from GCN's story: READ MORE

January 20, 2012    /    by

DOJ Shuts Down Megaupload, Anonymous Retaliates

This is turning into a wild week for headline-grabbing cyber activity. Immediately following Internet protests of proposed new legislation to crack down on Internet piracy, the Department of Justice (DOJ) moved quickly to shut down one of the most popular websites known for illegal downloads called Magaupload.

This is turning into a wild week for headline-grabbing cyber activity. Immediately following Internet protests of proposed new legislation to crack down on Internet piracy, the Department of Justice (DOJ) moved quickly to shut down one of the most popular websites known for illegal downloads called Magaupload. READ MORE

January 17, 2012    /    by

Wikipedia Protest: Websites Plan Jan 18 Shutdown Over SOPA

On January 18, 2012, Wikipedia and a long list of other popular websites will go dark to protest the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA).

Just when you thought you’ve seen it all online …. Along comes something else that’s new and raises plenty of serious tough questions.

On January 18, 2012, Wikipedia and a long list of other popular websites will go dark to protest the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). The Internet is full of stories on this topic. USA Today ran a front page story covering the fast-approaching event. Here’s an excerpt: READ MORE

January 12, 2012    /    by

Shnakule Malware Network Reshapes Views on Cyber Crime

A highly sophisticated malware network called "Shnakule" has recently been singled out as increasingly dangerous. Many security firms are rapidly reacting and even changing their views on cyber crime operations as a result of new information.

A highly sophisticated malware network called "Shnakule" has recently been singled out as increasingly dangerous. Many security firms are rapidly reacting and even changing their views on cyber crime operations as a result of new information. The Shnakule operation employs a massive network of servers to attack websites as well as compromise pages to exploit vulnerabilities and infect end user computers.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Open Source Infrastructure Report, which happens to be a very good resource for cyberecurity pros to check and review daily, posted a link to this United Kingdom (UK) article on January 10. I urge readers to take time to learn more on Shnakule. Here’s an excerpt from the UK article: READ MORE

January 4, 2012    /    by

2012 Cybersecurity Trends to Watch in Government

Its that time of year when we ask: where are we heading in regards to cybersecurity in 2012? Also, where have we been?

It’s that time of year when we ask: where are we heading in regards to cybersecurity in 2012? Also, where have we been? Here’s a bit of what I’ve been reading over the past week.

There are plenty of blogs, articles and technology answers to this question. Washington Technology mentions: How you will remember 2011.  William Jackson, who I usually enjoy reading over at Government Computer News, writes about 5 cyber threats (pain points) coming in 2012 and also 3 personal resolutions that you can make to improve securityREAD MORE

December 28, 2011    /    by

Holiday Week Security Fun: From Top T-shirts to Tech Humor

But one of my children said, "Why don't you write something fun for all those people who have to work between now and New Years Eve. How about some computer jokes, funny security stories or a list of your top 5 or 10 geek/nerd or security T-shirts?"

    It’s the week after Christmas, and we finally got (a little) holiday snow in Michigan. My family went sledding this afternoon, and my son got to try out his new snowboard. I’m home with the family now on a Tuesday evening getting ready to play some board games.

   My wife Priscilla asked if I was going to write a security blog this week, and I initially said no – I’m on vacation. But one of my children said, “Why don’t you write something fun for all those people who have to work between now and New Years Eve.” READ MORE