Recent reports state that cyber officers from the National Crime Agency (NCA), are investigating a data breach which has affected thousands of British Airways customers.

British Airways’ chairman and chief executive, Alex Cruz, has apologized for the “sophisticated, malicious attack” that hacked into customer credit card details. It is feared that the criminals have had access to utilizing the personal information to the point that people have had to cancel their credit cards. Seemingly 380,000 payments have been affected due to the two-week hack.

Since the recent introduction of the new Data Protection Act, under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the long-time British international airline could face fines in the millions. Although no passport, frequent flier details, or travel information has been invaded it is confirmed that the names, addresses expiration dates, security numbers, and credit cards numbers have been compromised. Concerns loom over the fact that this type of incident can lead to secondary data hackings.

British Airways suggests all customers who have made purchases via the British Airways app or website should notify their financial institutions immediately.

Highly regarded companies such as Goldman Sachs take great pride in boasting on their websites how “implementing facial recognition correctly”, may demonstrate great potential towards protecting one from a breach in cybersecurity. Securing the activity of one’s finance details with such advanced facial recognition technology has proven to be a positive and effective trend.

Microsoft, however, is questioning whether facial recognition technology is working for everyone’s advantage. In a recent blog posting, titled FACIAL RECOGNITION TECHNOLOGY: THE NEED FOR PUBLIC REGULATION AND CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY, written by Brad Smith – the Microsoft President is crying out for “the need for government regulation”.

Smith makes a passionate plea, due to what he considers the rapid evolution of technology and devices, “Advanced technology no longer stands apart from society; it is becoming deeply infused in our personal and professional lives”. He is demonstrating his concern about government tracking. In some instances Smith highlights how positive facial recognition technology is indeed useful for finding missing children or helping first responders identify a terrorist, however, the issues he feels a strong objection to is how facial recognition relates to “US government projects related to separating children from their families at the border”.

The elaborate details Smith illustrates in his blog post, regarding how facial recognition ought to be addressed through government regulation are many, but the emphasis in his starting points, clearly show his concern is focused on personal privacy and personal consent.

• Should law enforcement use of facial recognition be subject to human oversight and controls, including restrictions on the use of unaided facial recognition technology as evidence of an individual’s guilt or innocence of a crime?

• Similarly, should we ensure there is civilian oversight and accountability for the use of facial recognition as part of governmental national security technology practices?

• What types of legal measures can prevent use of facial recognition for racial profiling and other violations of rights while still permitting the beneficial uses of the technology?

• Should use of facial recognition by public authorities or others be subject to minimum performance levels on accuracy?

• Should the law require that retailers post visible notice of their use of facial recognition technology in public spaces?

• Should the law require that companies obtain prior consent before collecting individuals’ images for facial recognition? If so, in what situations and places should this apply? And what is the appropriate way to ask for and obtain such consent?

• Should we ensure that individuals have the right to know what photos have been collected and stored that have been identified with their names and faces?

• Should we create processes that afford legal rights to individuals who believe they have been misidentified by a facial recognition system?

The President of Microsoft bespeaks passionate objectives in the area of facial recognition technology, “this is a national issue that requires national leadership by our elected representatives”.

To read the entire blog by Microsoft President, Brad Smith visit: https://blogs.microsoft.com/on-the-issues/2018/07/13/facial-recognition-technology-the-need-for-public-regulation-and-corporate-responsibility/

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.

The United States Department of Homeland Security recently released documentation accusing Russia of attempting to attack U.S. infrastructure such as critical manufacturing sectors, aviation, water, commercial facilities, nuclear and energy sectors.

Evidence has shown the Russian government has the capability of sabotaging power plants and electrical systems, through cyber attacks. Unidentified hackers have found a way to enter into critical control systems. As far back as June 2017, the F.B.I. and the Department of Homeland Security alerted utility companies to these perpetrations.

With multiple Russian cyber operations, at large, American intelligence officials are keenly aware that Russian invasion is problematic not only to the United States but other European nations.

According to forensic analysis experts, Russian spies are aggressively preparing themselves for ways to infiltrate into crucial infrastructures within the United States, that could cause serious damage to the country.

Cyber security professionals from companies such a Symantec and Cylance, have confirmed that Russia has the capable espionage to sabotage industries within the USA.

Sanctions have been strongly placed upon Russia, as their behavior continues to be troubling. Two entities highlighted include, “FSB, and GRU intelligence agencies”.

Senior national officials are pushing back in meaningful ways. The determined motive of the attacks have been characterized as “multi-stage intrusion campaign by Russian cyber actors”. Their intent, “to gather details on computer management systems in the U.S. energy grid”

For confirmation on this article visit:

https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/alerts/TA18-074A

 

 

 

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.

 

 

VERIZON is partnering with visionaries from different industries, using data and technology to turn innovative ideas into reality, in their operation HUMANABIITY. Their slogan, “ We don’t wait for the future. We build it”, has engaged them in projects that reduce C02, save lives and keep food safe.

By creating a device with a sensor the size of an American nickel (10 cents), environmental conditions can be tracked through an advanced network system that protects food shipments from the risk of contamination.

According to data provided by VERIZON, 4 billion pounds of seafood, was consumed in America during 2009. Their studies also show that 47.8 million Americans get sick from food borne diseases each year, 128,000 people are hospitalized by food poisoning annually, and 3,000 Americans actually die each year from food borne diseases.

Advertisements created by the VERIZON team, proudly demonstrate the effectiveness and necessity of this safety sensor. Tom Villa, VERIZON Global Asset Management, speaks fluently on the product, “ We took our world class network and developed devices to track environmental conditions. This device allows people to understand what’s happening not only with the location of that asset, but also if it is too hot or too cold”. He describes the senor as “completely unique”, Chris Harrison, Shipping Manager, explains how products such as “Fish, beef, poultry, vaccines and insulin”, are protected and monitored by the device during shipping.

Trawler fisherman, Captain Dennis Woloshuck, Ocean Venture, in the VERIZON advertisement confidently states, “ I catch all this beautiful fish, but once its out of my hands I have no control over it. If you have a sensor that can keep track of your product, it can keep everyone honest that way”.

With trillions of transactions a year, a good competent network is vitally important and not many companies on the world have the capacity to handle such volume. There is nothing fishy about VERIZON, they have proven to have a grip on it with their little tiny sensor that is “keeping the food chain safe”.

Some of the iPhone’s most sensitive code was leaked on Wednesday, according to sources.

Security experts have reported that an anonymous hacker leaked a source code for iBoot. According to published accounts, it was originally stolen, by an APPLE employee, who shared it with a “tight-knit” group of friends, in order to use it, for private purposes. Unfortunately, the code went viral within a jailbreak community, and it wasn’t long before the source code was exposed and published openly, on the internet’s GitHub.

iBoot is the part of iOS that is responsible for a boot of the operating system on the device. Seemingly, the iBoot takes effect during the transition of the iPhone screen as it switches from black to white, then to the HOME screen. (more…)

The Indian government has faced a strong backlash over some of its decisions regarding the implementation of the Aadhar card. However it has stood its ground, countering the unjustified discourse around Aadhar and the inability of some to completely comprehend it.

When the Aadhar project began in 2009, its sole aim was to provide each and every Indian with a universally acceptable and portable unique identification. The only form of unique identification in India before Aadhar was the Ration card, which became increasingly unreliable owing to many loopholes and corruption in the system. Aadhar was conceptualized as a way out, building over the flaws of the ration card and extending its service to all individuals unconditionally. (more…)