You Can Hide, But You’ll Be Recognized

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Do you recall how the updated FBI facial recognition technology was under the tremendous pressure and criticism as being extremely expensive and insufficiently efficient? It was even compared to the one used by Facebook. The most popular social network in the world apparently much bigger database in this matter.

For what is worth, the FBI was able to close the 15 years old case, thanks to this facial recognition technology. One notorious child abuser was caught in Nepal against all odds. This amazing story really makes you think seriously about the potential implications of the latest technologies.

On the other hand, we just got one more confirmation of an old and simple IT security rule. There are no bad technologies or apps, only good or bad people who use them this way or another. This is definitely something worth remembering and repeating as many times as possible.

Just imagine what we could do, if we were to use available apps and technologies for some other things rather than spying and advertising. Would not that be something to wish for? Until then, these kinds of events will be treated as lonely and positive incidents. Unfortunately.

The Whistleblower On A Magazine Cover

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When you see Edward Snowden how firmly he holds the US flag close to his heart on the latest Wired Magazine cover, then you think or say or feel what exactly? For the US citizens and government this is an obvious case of bitter joke or inappropriate sense of humor. For the rest of us he will be a symbol.

Or, maybe a tragic figure who used a time machine to get to us from the ancient Greece. One thing is more than certain in this case. There are no chances for this one to become a win-win situation for him. We are very likely to witness a loose-and-then-loose-again situation for Edward Snowden.

Was it worth it? All these troubles and all this pain. This is a question only he knows an answer to. We have been awakened from a fake dream of flawless IT security and privacy, and there is no way back. The similar thing happened to Neo in The Matrix. Edward did not even ask us to choose between the red and blue pill.

He made a choice in our name. Eventually, he will also suffer consequences in our name. We will make a movie about him. Create a foundation with an annual reward carrying his name. What is there for him personally? Does he wish for a time machine while he reads the Wired Magazine at the Moscow airport?

About The Hackers’ Motivation

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Yes, let us ask some questions about the hackers’ motivation. What is in their hearts and minds that made them to do the things they do on a daily basis? We definitely need to know more about our worst cyber enemies in order to defeat them successfully. So, what do we actually know about their motives?

It may come as a surprise, but it seems that the excitement is the main motivation engine for all hackers in more than 50% of all known cases. It is a sad thing to witness so many promising IT careers being destroyed for a little fun and false sense of greatness. What is happening with the position number two?

Well, the hacker’s moral compass takes up to 30% of the entire motivational pie. In some cases, they really believe that what they are doing is justified and for the common good. And finally, the financial factor takes what is left of all remaining percentages in this story. Less than 20%.

So, what is the moral of this story? If we can provide an alternative for the excitement and ensure the sense of rightfulness for hackers, we can solve more than 80% of all cyber attacks before they even appear. Do not blink, and start to think how we can achieve this goal. Hack the hackers’ hearts and minds.

Troubles Come In A Legit Disguise

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It seems that modern hackers like to read the old books about the military strategy and the art of war. How else we are supposed to explain the sudden change of concept in the master design of the most malicious software? If you examine modern malware, you will notice an intriguing phenomena.

There is no need to attack the system, when you can skip it undetected. Why bother fighting, when you can do your job with a proper disguise. And, this is how we reached the point that top malware looks and works like a completely legitimate software. You realize that something is wrong when it is too late.

The new RAT or Remote Access Trojan for Android really does not have problems when it comes to a successful disguise in both paid and free apps. The more popular a certain app becomes, the more likely is that it carries an uninvited guest with it. So, what are we supposed to do in order to defend our Android territory?

Well, you do not have to be a general to know that new weapons on the battlefields simply call for new strategies and defense measures. If these malicious troublemakers can disguise themselves, then we can and should find a way to scan them properly before they hit the walls of our digital fortresses. Right?

Old Plugins. New Trouble.

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It seems that the Microsoft’s troubles with the updates and lack of technical support for the older versions will eventually turn into an endless saga. For what is worth, Microsoft has been caught in the crossfire. Unfortunately, there is not much it can really do about it in the first place.

On the one hand, we have loyal, but extremely stubborn Windows users, who are not eager to leave their XP, Vista or Windows 7 versions behind. On the other side, there is a crumbling pressure of the ever present cyber threat. The unprotected Windows has become the hackers’ Eldorado.

Therefore, Microsoft has decided to block all old web plugins with the latest update in order to increase the level of cyber security. In addition, one very serious rumor has it that Microsoft is so desperate that it is willing to give away Windows 9 for free to XP users just to make them to leave it.

It comes without saying that this is a tricky situation for Microsoft. Which one hurts less? To lose Windows users or its flawless reputation as a cyber-threats-proof place. Oh, this is tough one, undoubtedly. They will need all rocket scientists, they can find to solve this puzzle successfully.

Windows XP An Open Source?

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Are you ready to hear an interesting suggestion? It directly refers to the troubles associated with the lack of support for the XP users all around the world. Almost one quarter of all personal computers in the world still run on the XP. The users are stubborn, and Microsoft is extremely frustrated.

You are supposed to move to the new Windows version. However, for some reason you are still using the XP. Microsoft leaves you to be all on your own. The hackers are applauding to this unexpected opportunity to penetrate the systems more easily. Is there an acceptable solution for this situation?

Well, there are some voices saying that the “abandoned” XP should become an open source. This will allow the enthusiastic developers to develop the adequate updates and protection for this outdated OS. Are we too naive to believe that Microsoft will accept this kind of a bold suggestion?

The things are extremely serious with this one. Microsoft even examines an idea to offer free Windows 9 package to all XP, Vista and Windows 7 users. If there is no other way for them to switch to the newest OS version, why not? Under these circumstances the open source concept does not seem as such a bad idea.

The Operation Creative

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The UK Police’s Intellectual Property Crime Unit or shorter the PIPCU has recently sent more than 100 letters to the owners of illegal websites demanding two things. The first option is to ensure that their sites are fully legit. The second option is to kindly remove their domain from the Web.

We are not quite sure what was the main idea for the busy little police bees when they come up with a name for this operation. It is called the Operation Creative. How appropriate, indeed. The main goal of this action is to challenge the pirate websites. So, what happened with the results?

According to the available information obtained from the Freedom Of Information the TorrentFreak has found out the following. The police in this action has requested that 75 pirate websites face suspension. However, only 5 of them actually accepted this kind of an unpleasant recommendation.

So, what is the moral of this story? Either it is a good thing to run a piracy website or the police has to change something about its approach. Otherwise, there is no much joy and success in sending the warning letters, is it? Or, maybe they should change the name of their operation.

Xiaomi Sends All Data Back To China?

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Here is an extremely disturbing rumor. Apparently, Xiaomi models send all user data back to China, including SMS, as well. In other words, as soon as you start using a Xiaomi smartphone, you become a part of the Chinese version of the Big Brother without your knowledge or approval. Is this true?

Well, something is certainly happening with the Xiaomi smartphones. On the other side, it is worth asking what is the motivation behind these accusations? Are we worried more about our security and privacy, or the unprecedented success and growing power of this so-called Chinese Apple?

Did you know that Xiaomi was able to sell 15,000 MI3 models in India in less than two seconds? In addition, for the very first time Xiaomi dominated its home ground after the years of indisputable Samsung’s rule in China. These facts are more than enough for some smartphone players to start worrying.

Do not be surprised, if the next thing to hear is an appeal not to buy smartphones, which come from China. Without any exaggeration we can say that the next thing is the smartphone nationalism. On the other hand, Samsung comes from the South Korea, but at least they are our allies. Right?

The Cause Justifies The Means?

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Here is a tricky one. When you read something like this, you usually end up with a huge question mark on your face. It seems that the FBI has been using spying programs in order to collect information about users on several websites and forums with the alleged pedophile content.

This is how we get to the point that unjustified means are being used for the justified cause. You do not have to be a rocket scientist to probably know by now that the Internet has become the most popular hideaway place and sharing mean for all kinds of cyber pedophiles. The FBI is definitely not an exception in this case.

However, the use of unauthorized or even prohibited methods in fighting some of the most troubling forms of crime is a little bit problematic. We can argue as long as we like. Pro et contra argumentation between the two parties with the opposite points of view will probably confuse you even more.

We are not saying that some of the pedophiles with a criminal record should be granted with an opportunity to sue the FBI. On the other side, the FBI and similar agencies should not be discouraged in their rightful efforts. Some acceptable modus has to be introduced. But how? We are not quite sure about?

CryptoLocker Unlocked

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We sure hope you have not had a chance to deal with the misery caused by the CryptoLocker. Just imagine a situation when someone gets your precious things, puts them in a room, locks them, and then asks you to pay a ransom in an exchange for a key. Are you terrified enough?

This is exactly what happens to your files once the CryptoLocker gets its cyber hands on them. If you want them back, there is no other option than to pay money for a virtual key in order to free your precious files. Finally, someone has found a way to end your troubles with the merciless CryptoLocker.

For what is worth, the busy little bees from the Fox IT and Fire Eye give you a chance to upload your trapped files for free and release them with a proper key. Unfortunately, this option is only available for the certain versions of the KryptoLocker. Despite this flaw, we should treat one as the good news.

It comes without saying that in this case, it all comes down to the proper prevention IT security work. Better to lock your sensitive by yourself than to wait and hope someone else will not do it for you with dishonest intentions. Do not waste your time blinking, it is the right moment for some serious IT thinking.