ESA Electronic Security Association has been active for active for approximately 70 years. Its membership offers educational tools, resources and connections in the industry as well as advocacy support related to the electronic security and life safety community.

The ESA community attracts those in the industry that are engaged in projects by residential, commercial, government and industrial clients. All members receive training, instructions, networking opportunities and other services that will enhance the growth of their respective company.

Programs include topics that allow interaction between professionals, members, communities and leading industry vendors. Certificates are offered by the ESA National Training School (NTS) in subjects such as Certified Alarm Technician, Video Systems Technologies and Residential Fire Alarm, and on am online basis, throughout different states> Core courses include, intrusion, fire systems, video, access, sales and service.

For more information: ww.esaweb.org

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Starting today June 19th, until Friday 22, in Nashville Tennessee, is ESX – Electronic Security Expo. This year’s 2018 event, according to their program, as revealed to the public online, aims to feature “insights from tech experts, a heartfelt panel on school security, and more”.

The ESX Expo is a “nation-wide event, open exclusively to the electronic security and life safety industry”. It is designed to allow interaction of professionals and those alike in the safety and security community.

Divided into topics of education, events & experiences, Expo and Non-for Pofit, the week’s activities promises to energize its attendees to re-think the future. Key-note speakers are invited to voice their opinions and experiences on security integration subject matters; some of these sessions are also interactive so the community may participate in discussions and brainstorming.

Alongside the business and networking opportunities are anything from breakfasts to cocktail receptions as well as various forms of entertainment; one such highlight includes a performance set to take place in the exhibit hall on June 20, by Kristen Merlin, a finalist on NBC;’s “ The Voice”.

The ESX Expo website also boasts of an upcoming Shark Tank style contest called TechVision Challenge, where contestants enter their creative concepts and are judged by a panel of impressive industry leaders.

It is an Expo that offers expert advice on its showcased products, and services. With a keen intent to help the gathering security integration enthusiasts learn more about installation training, merchandising, marketing and sales, exhibitors are on display throughout.

As stated publically, “ESX is owned by the industry’s leading professional associations. All profits made from the show are reinvested into programs and activities that help grow the industry”.

For more information: http://www.esxweb.com/Schedule/Full-Schedule

Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd., and ZTE Corp are prominent Chinese companies that produce telecommunications equipment and mobile phones.

In a recent statement issued by the U.S. Pentagon, the devices manufactured by these companies “may pose an unacceptable risk” to U.S. military bases worldwide.

Senior level, U.S. intelligence officials are concerned the devices might be capable of spying on U.S. service personnel. According to media reports, Blackberry smart phones have also been ousted.

The potential threats have not been completely released, due to security reasons.

According to a popular cyber security firm, GEMINI ADVISORY, 125,000 credit card and debit card numbers are for sale on the dark web, following a Saks Fifth Avenue, Saks Off Fifth and Lord & Taylor breach that has caused an impact on at least 5 million shoppers.

This data has been stolen from customers while personally shopping in 3 retail stores; it is not yet confirmed whether online shoppers to these department stores have been affected.

The retail stores which are owned by Hudson Bay Company, have guaranteed to consumers that it has “taken steps to contain the breach”, and assures customers shopping at their stores, “it no longer poses a risk”.

In a public interview, cyber security expert and author Eric Cole, remarks that even though credit cards are encrypted with chips, “these retailers are still storing their data in a back end data base, which negates or takes away any of the security protection within the chip”.

It has been said by many experts that companies do not do enough to protect the consumer’s personal details as it enters a pool of public data. The system is failing individuals who place their trust in businesses to respect private information. The customer is vulnerable to fraud activity and cyber attacks.

Extra security measures need to be taken to prevent such occurrences happening again, to the individual consumers shopping at these stores. The following steps are advised:

  1. Ask credit card providers to send text to mobile phone and ask permission before any purchasing transaction is activated.

2.  Use a payment security service that holds all personal information securely.

3.  Contact financial institutions to have new cards issued, to prevent unauthorized use of  the card.

    4.  Change passwords on that service which was compromised and any other services that share same password.

5.  Change passwords on all personal social media platforms.

Investigations are underway to explore this cyber invasion, while at the same time the company is offering free identity protection services and credit and web monitoring to its customers.

 

 

 

Over fifty million users have had their data harvested through social media platform Facebook. Following the crisis of Cambridge Analytica, CEO Mark Zuckerberg admits the data scandal was a “major breach of trust”, and has publicly apologized. He has agreed to testify in front of U.S. Congress, and states in a public interview that Facebook has “a basic responsibility to protect people’s data”. He promises a full forensic audit to investigate who is improperly using private data of Facebook users.

Although Zuckerberg, has pledged to restrict access to app developers moving forward, there is still  concern regarding Android users and how data has been collected by Facebook from their mobile devices, without given permission. Fears of privacy invasion on Facebook is at its greatest, although Facebook highlights that two of the Android apps have opt-in/out features with prompts.

Apple iOS mobile devices do not allow access into the users’ calls and texts data unless a certain protocol is followed, therefore iPhones and iPads, are slightly more protected. The architecture of Android is different and not so secure.

There is a growing concern in some circles, that social media platforms could face strong government regulations in the aftermath of these incidents. There may even be a decline in activity since users are also likely to become skeptical, due to privacy protection concerns. This will in turn affect advertisers.

Facebook’s most valuable asset is the user, and the ability to follow the user track. the company monitors pages clicked on, as well as posts tagged and liked. By sharing this information, Facebook makes over 90% of profits on advertising, which according to research is in the realm of close to 40 million dollars.

Zuckerberg, has spoken of a commitment to 20,000 employees, working on security and content review, by the end of the year. In a recent public interview the Facebook guru states, “security isn’t a problem that you ever fully solve; you can get to a level where you are better than your adversaries and then continue evolving”.

Stocks and shares have already plummeted, with a loss estimated around $80 billion in market value. Consumers are now being extra cautious. After-all, no-one wants a “peeping Tom” in their phone.

To read a full report visit Ars Technica.

 

 

There is much talk about security on land, but what about safety in the open seas?

Maritime safety is an umbrella for many categories, which include: search and rescue, radio communications, fire protection, maritime security and piracy, to name a few.

Wireless radio has always been a valuable tool in communication. When a vessel is in distress, help can soon be dispatched if a call is transmitted by wireless radio. The problem is that wireless has limited distance capability. Satellites have since proven to be an improvement. Such devices evidently play a vital role in search and rescue operations at sea.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has evolved into the International Maritime Satellite Organization, (Inmarsat), with an intention to focus on emergency maritime communications. Global Maritime Distress Safety Systems (GMDSS) was established as part of Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), which highlights the importance of global maritime distress and safety systems.

GMDSS is an integrated communication system, which assists in protecting lives at sea. It consists of several parts that work together to function cohesively. The system consists of, determining the vessel in distress by an alert, search and rescue coordination, locating, maritime safety information broadcasts, and various types of relative communications. It is an internationally agreed upon set of safety procedures and protocols used to increase safety and make it easier to rescue vessels in distress.

The latest technologies of maritime safety systems, provide sophisticated ship-to-ship communications, as well as ship to shore.

Three significant Amtrak train incidents, resulting in deadly crashes, have occurred in the U.S.A. within the past 3 months. Red flags are up, regarding whether the safety of Amtrak is a result of the company at large, or human error.

Reports state, this morning, at 2:35 a.m. EST, an Amtrak train 91, was on its way from New York to Miami, when it came into contact with a stationary CSX freight train, in the South Carolina region. The lead engine derailed, as well as several passenger cars. It is said that more than 140 people were on board the Amtrak train. As it stands currently, there are 2 fatalities and 50+ injured. (more…)

Yesterday, people on the island of Hawaii, were aghast and shaken, by an accidental alert, sent out in error, to their mobile devices, stating, “Ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii. Seek immediate shelter. This is not a drill”. (more…)

1. Crypto Currency for the Layman – NAC3: The North American Crypto Currency Conference.

NAC3 – the only Bitcoin and Blockchain conference designed for the “average person”.

Topics: “A Beginner’s Guide to Trading Crypto Currency”, “Investing in Today’s Crypto Market”, “Wallets and Security”, “Tax Implications”, “Legal Regulations”.

New York City

February 24-25, 2018

Eden on the Hudson (more…)

When will it ever end? What can we do to step up security in a world where hatred is oftentimes stronger than peace.

Another terrorist attack has occurred but this time in New York, USA. According to police reports, 8 people were killed, of which 6 were foreign tourists enjoying a vacation in Manhattan. US Officials have evidence to prove the perpetrator is said to be a radicalized supporter of the militant group (IS).

While 11 other people caught in the deadly strike are recovering from injuries, the question remains – how do we prevent these deadly terrorist attacks from happening in the first place. What strides as a nation, do we have to take, as far as security is concerned?

New York, is not the only city that is faced with such devastating types of atrocities, cities in Europe have also suffered multiple terrorist attacks of this kind, over the past few months. The current intention of these radical murderers is to use manuals that give detailed instructions on how to maximize devastation and death with accessible tools. The latest method is to use trucks and large vans as weapons, which can be stolen or rented. Armed with lethal tools such as sharp kitchen knives, and vehicles that are capable of plowing through crowds of innocent people at high speed, the sick intent of creating tremendous carnage is achieved.

So where do the experts start? Is it a surveillance issue? We have state of the art camera networks with large overviews and the latest technologies planted in strategic locations. We have “boots on the ground”’, in the form of active law enforcement officers patrolling the streets. Protective barriers have even been installed on many walkways, in order to defend common areas of significance. A mat with steel spikes that can be rolled out to puncture tires of speeding vehicles, has even been designed, but now we are discovering that none of these attempts of protection, are sufficient alone.

What do authorities have to do in order to prevent these threats from reoccurring in our neighborhoods? Can security agencies get their head around this horrific phenomenon and detect vehicular attack plots before they occur? Gathering intelligence is one of the most important forms of security. It has to be collected BEFORE the radical extremist groups have time to carry our their dangerous attacks.

Governments must work closely together and allow security intelligence to help find solutions that lead the way. Access to mobile devices and personal data must be allowed through cyber security. Information sharing, at high intelligence level, with respected security agencies, is probably the surest way to understand the encrypted coding and methods of communication these savage criminals exchange with one another.

In a constellation of efforts to prevent these radical extremists, from invading countries and slaughtering good, decent people, let’s emphasize the importance of allowing technology to police critical information that can prevent terrorist movement, before ruin on all levels is allowed to prevail. We have the capability to detect threats through our vast technology. In addition, the sophistication of security methods is ever evolving. This incomprehensive problem has to be solved. Our hope lies in the architecture of advanced security intelligence. One terror attack is one too many. One life killed, is one too many. It has to STOP now.