Cybersecurity

Mercyhurst University’s Tom Ridge School Hosts Fourth Global Intelligence Forum

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English: Seal of the United States Department ...
English: Seal of the United States Department of Homeland Security. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

GlobeNewswire

 

ERIE, Pa., Dec. 16, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — From public health challenges like Ebola to the effect of climate change on food safety in the coming decades, international experts in public health, higher education, business and traditional intelligence will gather in Dungarvan, Ireland, for the fourth biennial Global Intelligence Forum — The Dungarvan Conference July 12-15, 2015.

 

Sponsored by the Tom Ridge School of Intelligence Studies and Information Science at Mercyhurst University in Erie, Pennsylvania, the conference comes on the heels of highly successful summits that welcomed prominent intelligence leaders like Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge, the first U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security; former CIA Director Michael V. Hayden; former FBI Director Louis J. Freeh; and Europol Director Rob Wainwright.

 

Panelists for this year’s expanded forum — “Intelligence-Informed Decision-Making to Build a More Secure Future” — will address how leaders can effectively establish intelligence practices to enhance decision-making as they address pressing global concerns.

 

Keynote speakers include one of the world’s leading experts on cybersecurity, Howard Schmidt, who served as cyber advisor to Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush. He also held positions as vice president and chief information security officer for eBay Inc., and operated as chief security officer for Microsoft Corp. Currently, he is a partner with Tom Ridge in Ridge-Schmidt Cyber, an executive services firm that helps leaders in business and government navigate the increasing demands of cybersecurity. Read the rest of this entry »

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ISIS cyber capability judged more ‘aspirational’ than operational

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By Sean Lyngaas  Sep 17, 2014

Shutterstock image: unfunctional computer.ISIS terrorists have announced their intention to establish a “digital caliphate” for launching attacks on U.S. critical infrastructure.

Interviews with cybersecurity experts and questions posed to public officials reveal an assessment of the cyber warfare capabilities of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria that, while potentially dangerous, remains more aspirational than operational.

It is common for a terrorist group like ISIS to develop cyber capabilities to complement their ambitions to carry out violent attacks, experts say. But being slick with social media is a world apart from being able to hack segments of U.S. critical infrastructure.

ISIS terrorists have said online that they aim to establish a “digital caliphate” for launching attacks on U.S. infrastructure, according to a Sept. 14 Fox News report. Doing so might prove difficult, but it wouldn’t cost much to begin probing networks. One could buy a tablet for a few hundred dollars, set up some encryption tools and start running vulnerability analyses of code used by critical infrastructure like the electric grid, said Tony Cole, vice president and global government CTO at FireEye, a network security firm. Read the rest of this entry »

Russia’s cyber weapons hit Ukraine: How to declare war without declaring war

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By targeting the Ukrainian government with a cyber weapon, the Russians are able to effectively engage in an aggressive, kinetic act without actually declaring war, or other countries reacting like it is an act of war. This will not last forever. 

By Alec RossCommentary contributor / March 12, 2014

A man looks at posters from an international campaign to support Ukraine in Kiev, March 12. Commentary contributor Alec Ross writes: ‘The absence of a set of broadly held norms and treaties governing the use of cyber weapons has not led to the firing of guns or launching of missiles, but this will not always be the case. We need something more than playground rules.’

Efrem Lukatsky/AP

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Ayatollah Ali Khamenei delivers message to ‘Revolutionary foster-children,’ aka university students, Mehr reports.

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By Haaretz | Feb. 13, 2014 | 1:20 PM

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Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Photo by AP

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has urged the country’s students to prepare for cyber war, the semi-official Mehr News Agency reported on Wednesday. Khamenei delivered a message to a university students’ association, or his “Revolutionary foster-children,” as he called them, reminding them that they are “cyber-war agents” who must prepare for battle, Mehr reported.

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Cyber warfare: Pakistani hackers claim defacing over 2,000 Indian websites

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By Farooq Baloch Published: February 2, 2014

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Pakistani hackers claim defacing over 2,000 Indian websites. DESIGN: ESSA MALIK

KARACHI:

Pakistani hackers have claimed responsibility for hacking over 2,000 Indian websites on the country’s Republic Day, confirming reports published by the Indian media earlier this week.

“Hackers defaced more than 2,000 Indian websites – 2,118 to be exact – on Republic Day (January 26) in what is being termed as ‘a major cyber attack’,” The Hindu reported on January 29. According to the report, the attackers’ internet protocol (IP) address was traced to Pakistan.

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“Most of the defaced websites were attacked by Pakistani hackers using the handles ‘StrikerRude’, ‘KashmirCyberArmy’, ‘PakCyberExpert’, ‘HUnterGujar’ and the operation was named as ‘#OP26jan’,” the newspaper cited the Global Cyber Security Response Team, Bangalore as saying. The websites targeted included that of the Central Bank of India.

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Bitcoin and the fictions of money

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The New York Times Reuters – A mock Bitcoin is displayed on a table in an illustration picture taken in Berlin January 7, 2014. REUTERS/Pawel Kopczynski/Files

How should we think about a currency like Bitcoin? The first thing to remember is this: Money is a sort of collective fiction. What money we choose to trust says much about how we see the world.

Above the simplest exchanges, most money has limited use. Gold, the most common historical currency, is almost only good for adornment. To its fans, gold’s uselessness is a value in itself; since the stock of gold is not consumed, it’s reasonably stable, while governments can print all the currency they want.

Paper is, of course, a proxy for the government issuing the money. How much we trust the government’s ability to collect taxes, pay debts, and so on is the collective fiction that gives a country’s money value. Read the rest of this entry »

Edward Snowden: Did the American whistleblower act alone?

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A new book looks at the damage the fugitive American whistleblower and his Snowdenistas are doing to Western interests

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Sabotage and treason: Edward Snowden. Clues suggest that the whistleblower is in or near the foreign intelligence HQ in Yasenevo, Russia Photo: AFP/Getty Images

By Edward Lucas 8:27PM GMT 24 Jan 2014

Edward Snowden is, in the eyes of many, a secular saint. The fugitive NSA contractor has sacrificed his career and risked his freedom to expose systematic wrongdoing by Western intelligence agencies: America and Britain spy on other Western countries; they hoover up and store vast quantities of information about domestic emails and phone calls; they use secret court orders to force cooperation, and they can bug almost any international communication.

After his daring heist of secrets from America’s National Security Agency, the 30-year-old has fled to a secret hiding place where he awaits deserved vindication. It is the stuff of spy movies – played out in real life. Read the rest of this entry »