http://www.defenseone.com/threats/2018/06/cyber-researchers-dont-think-feds-or-congress-can-protect-against-cyberattacks/149289/ Quite evidently, the U.S. government has little clue about defending itself against cybersecurity attacks, and is consequently unprepared for any digital disasters.
[od -c output attached for peace of mind] http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-44635134 “Claims that a chatbot can diagnose medical conditions as accurately as a GP have sparked a row between the software's creators and UK doctors.'' Babylon's chatbot claims to out-achieve carbon-based physicians on the UK MRCGP (Membership Royal College of General Practitioners) examination. Babylon advocates their AI platform to complement a physician's judgment, not as a wholesale replacement. “Babylon said that the first time its AI sat the exam, it achieved a score of 81%. It added that the average mark for human doctors was 72%, based on results logged between 2012 and 2017. But the RCGP said it had not provided Babylon with the test's questions and had no way to verify the claim.'' Given commercial aspirations, and the skyward trajectory of health care service delivery, an attempt to capitalize on a ''cost-effective'' AI-based alternative is likely. Favorable legislation, and weak regulatory oversight, will induce businesses to pursue them despite potential public health risks. A randomized control trial must be performed. Any business that promotes and sells these AI diagnosis/treatment services must be required to enroll their own employees and immediate family members as participants. The trial outcome reviewers must be free from conflict of interest.
With so many lives at stake, computer scientists and healthcare IT pros are motivated to develop strategies that keep patients safe from medical device hackers. They're making progress. http://www.hpe.com/us/en/insights/articles/medical-device-security-hacking-prevention-measures-1806.html
http://www.cnet.com/news/exactis-340-million-people-may-have-been-exposed-in-bigger-breach-than-equifax/ We hadn't heard of the firm either, but it had data on hundreds of millions of Americans and businesses and leaked it, according to Wired. Abrar Al-Heeti June 27, 2018 2:14 PM PDT If you're a US citizen, your personal information—your phone number, home address, email address, even how many children you have—may have just become easily available to hackers in an alleged massive data leak. Florida-based marketing and data aggregation firm Exactis exposed a database containing nearly 340 million individual records on a publicly accessible server, Wired reported. Earlier this month, security researcher Vinny Troia found that nearly 2 terabytes of data was exposed, which seems to include personal information on hundreds of millions of US adults and millions of businesses, the report said. “It seems like this is a database with pretty much every US citizen in it,'' Troia told Wired. Exactis didn't immediately respond to a request for comment or confirmation. The alleged breach reportedly exposed highly personal information, such as people's phone numbers, home and email addresses, interests and the number, age and gender of their children. Credit card information and Social Security numbers don't appear to have been leaked. Troia told Wired that he doesn't know where the data is coming from, “but it's one of the most comprehensive collections I've ever seen.'' Because Exactis hasn't confirmed the leak, it's hard to know exactly how many people are affected. But Troia found two versions of the database that each had around 340 million records, with roughly 230 million on consumers and 110 million on business contacts, according to Wired. Exactis says on its website that it has over 3.5 billion consumer, business and digital records. The data leak is noteworthy not only for its breadth, but also for the depth of information the records have on people. Every record reportedly has entries that include more than 400 variables on characteristics like whether the person smokes, what their religion is and whether they have dogs or cats. But Wired noted that in some instances, the information is inaccurate or outdated. Just because people's financial information or Social Security numbers weren't leaked doesn't mean they're not at risk for identity theft. The amount of personal information that was exposed could still help scammers impersonate or profile them. Huge compromises to personal information have been making headlines lately. In 2017, Equifax was involved in a massive data breach of 145.5 million people's data. And in October, Yahoo revealed that all 3 billion accounts were hacked in a 2013 breach.
Nice to see that the “Third Party Doctrine''—which gave the govt “most favored nation status'' w.r.t. your data—is finally being chipped away. However, as this law professor points out, this decision will have little practical effect. [Sorry for the length of this posting, but every point is salient.] http://www.vox.com/the-big-idea/2018/6/22/17493632/carpenter-supreme-court-privacy-digital-cell-phone-location-fourth-amendment The latest Supreme Court decision is being hailed as a big victory for digital privacy. It's not. Carpenter forces police to get a warrant before getting some cellphone data. But other Fourth Amendment cases will undermine its impact. By Aziz Huq Updated Jun 23, 2018, 7:43am EDT Congratulations—a closely divided US Supreme Court has just ruled in Carpenter v. United States that you have a constitutional right to privacy in the locational records produced by your cellphone use. Law enforcement now cannot ask Sprint, AT&T, or Verizon, for cell tower records that reveal your whereabouts through your phone's interaction with those towers, at least without a warrant. Carpenter builds on two earlier decisions. In 2011, the Court required a warrant before police placed a GPS tracker on a vehicle to track its movements. In 2014, it forbade warrantless searches of cellphone during arrests. Whatever it's other flaws, the Roberts Court thus seems to understand electronic privacy's importance. But there are a couple of things to know before toasting the Court's high regard for privacy in the digital age. The Roberts Court, building on what the preceding Rehnquist Court did, has created an infrastructure for Fourth Amendment law that makes it exceptionally easy for police to do a search, even when a warrant is required. The law also makes it exceptionally difficult for citizens to obtain close judicial oversight, even when the police have violated the Constitution. As a result of these background rules, even a decision as seemingly important as Carpenter is unlikely to have any dramatic effect on police practices. It's not just that our digital privacy is insufficiently protected, in other words. It's that our Fourth Amendment rights and remedies in general have been eroded. Once enough holes have been poked in the general system for vindicating Fourth Amendment interests, the decision to extend Fourth Amendment coverage to a new domain—such as cell-site locational data -- is just not terribly significant. Timothy Ivory Carpenter had been convicted of nine armed robberies based on witness testimony, but the prosecution also stressed in its closing argument records obtained from his cellphone company. Those records showed how Carpenter's phone interacted with the cell phone towers that carried its signal. As Chief Justice Roberts emphasized, the records painted a detailed picture of Carpenter's movements over 127 days. Yet the government did not use a warrant based on probable cause to obtain those cell-site records, relying instead on a statute called the Stored Communications Act. Forcing police to get a warrant is not much of a protection these days Consider first the core constitutional protection on which Chief Justice Robert's opinion in Carpenter hinged—the requirement of a warrant based on probable cause from a judge before the police can acquire cell-site records that allow for detailed physical tracking of suspects' movements. >From now on, the police will usually have to get a warrant before seeking such information. But that offers limited protection. One reason: In other Fourth Amendment cases, the Court has held that it is not just life-tenured federal judges who can issue warrants. A warrant can also be obtained from a range of other officials, including municipal court clerks who have no law training and no tenure protection. Such clerical staff lack the skills and incentives to examine warrant applications closely to determine compliance with the law. Still, they are allowed to issue warrants. Even where there are no such court clerks, it is well known that police and prosecutors go “judge shopping'' when a physical search or arrest is in play. Judges have varying reputations for being more or less careful in scrutinizing warrant applications. It is often well known which judges in a city or courthouse are more or less scrupulous. When police have a weak warrant application, they have a strong incentive to avoid judges who will give it a close read. These weaknesses in the warrant regime for physical searches or arrests are exacerbated when electronic data is at issue. Warrant applications for cell tower records often rest on technical details about the geographic and temporal scope of the search. These applications might in theory seek a quite varied range of information, including the target's location, the number of calls he made, and the manner in which he used apps. Review of the application will also require fine judgments about when information can be shared with other law enforcement agencies and government officials. Just because a prosecutor can obtain electronic data, for example, that surely doesn't mean she can hand it over to, say, a political appointee in the White House or a Department of Transportation employee who happens to be the subject's boyfriend. Because close scrutiny by an experienced and independent judge has become so easy to avoid, there is no guarantee these questions matters will get careful and independent consideration—even if a warrant is sought and issued consistent with the main holding of Carpenter. The hurdle of “probable cause'' has also been steadily lowered Assume that police are before a scrupulous judge. Even then, the background Fourth Amendment rules mean that they have a light burden to bear. As Chief Justice Robert's opinion today stresses, a warrant can be issued only based on “probable cause.'' But in a series of earlier cases about physical searches, the Court has winnowed down the “probable cause'' requirement to the showing of a mere “fair probability'' that evidence of a crime will be found. This “fair probability'' requirement has become easier to satisfy in recent decades because federal and state legislatures have created sweeping penalties for conspiracies to commit crimes and for accomplices. Showing a “fair probability'' of a conspiracy to commit a crime is not difficult. Under federal law, for example, a criminal conspiracy exists if there's an agreement to commit any criminal act in the future, and one step—even a lawful one—taken to that end. In one case, for example, a Google search served as the “overt act'' for an elaborate conspiracy charge, even in the absence of evidence of actual planned criminal conduct. This sweeping definition of criminal liability interacts with the weak “probable cause'' rule. Police need only show a “fair probability'' that a single lawful action has been taken in relation to a criminal agreement, and they are entitled to a warrant. This is not hard to do. This problem is pervasive across Fourth Amendment law. But it has particular significance to cell-site locational data. Such data maps the movements of a group of people—precisely the evidence that is routinely relevant to conspiracy charges. So with a conspiracy theory in hand, it will often be very easy for the police to meet the (exceedingly weak) probable cause standard. Would a warrant requirement have made a practical difference in Carpenter's case? In Carpenter's case, investigators had a confession from one of the participants in the string of armed robberies. They also had the cell numbers of other participants, including Carpenter's. These two pieces of information would almost certainly have been enough to allow the government to get a warrant on a conspiracy theory of probable cause. But imagine that the investigator couldn't even pull together evidence showing probable cause of a conspiracy. Imagine that they instead play fast and loose with the contents of the warrant application. For example, the application might rest on some dubious evidence, and the investigator might consciously choose not to confirm its accuracy. Once charges have been filed, could a defendant get the locational data thrown out on the grounds that the warrant application was based on false pretenses? Once again, general Fourth Amendment law makes this possible in theory but unlikely in practice. To get evidence acquired by a warrant tossed out of court, a defendant must show that an investigator acted with “reckless disregard'' in preparing a warrant application. In most states and in federal court, there is no rule that permits the defendant to examine police or prosecutor records. Hence, the defendant often must make this recklessness showing without any documentary evidence of what the police did. It is therefore usually practically impossible for most defendants to challenge flawed search warrants. Again, warrants for electronic data are no different. Even if a defendant succeeds in getting a warrant quashed, moreover, the Supreme Court has said that a reviewing court of appeals must look again at the warrant—now placing a thumb on the scales in favor of the investigating officer. In effect, when the government loses the rare case in which a defendant can show a warrant to be flawed, it gets a second chance to have the warrant restored by a court of appeals. Prosecutors can use illicitly obtained information if a suspect testifies Still, lean your imagination into the wind to imagine a defendant who has overcome all these constraints, and had a warrant quashed. The evidence from that flawed warrant can still be introduced at trial if the defendant chooses to testify. The Supreme Court established that rule in the 1971 case of Harris v. New York, on the grounds that if the defendant could give testimony, the government had the concomitant right to undermine it by whatever information was in its hands. As a result, even when the government has illegally acquired evidence, its possession of that evidence creates a strong incentive for defendants not to take the stand. Needless to say, this will often make the prosecutor's job easier. If a defendant chooses not to testify, that is still not the end of the story. The government can also argue that information gathered unlawfully without a warrant should be admitted because there was an emergency. Chief Justice Roberts explicitly carved out an emergency exception in his Carpenter opinion, citing the possibility of “bomb threats, active shootings, and child abductions.'' In such cases, no warrant is required. Also, if the locational data was acquired without a warrant before Carpenter was decided, the Court held that it need not be kept out. Carpenter hence helps no one whose cell-site locational data was acquired before this week. And the Carpenter opinion also leaves open the possibility that police can acquire less than seven days of cell-site data without a warrant. Are there other paths for redress? Someone in Carpenter's shoes, whose Fourth Amendment rights have been violated, can technically sue the police for damages even if they are not charged with a criminal offense. The problem is that the Court has almost completely squelched the availability of damages for most constitutional wrongs, including the Fourth Amendment, through a series of technical anti-plaintiff rules. In short, the legal framework of Fourth Amendment remedies has been riddled with so many exceptions and loopholes that Carpenter's holding that a warrant is required to acquire cell-site locational data is likely to impose no great burden on the police. If police can't get the information through cellphone companies, they will turn up the heat on suspects But the facts around the electronic data in Carpenter make the Court's holding especially hollow. Locational data is held not only by telephone company. It is also contained on a person's phone, even if she chooses to disable locational tracking. (Certain apps can track locational data produced by a phone's internal sensors without the owner's knowledge or permission.) This data is generally accurate to a foot or so. Police can thus acquire location data—and much more—if they ask for consent to examine a phone. Extensive psychological research shows that most of the time—especially if the suspect is a woman or a racial minority—suspects are likely to say yes. General Fourth Amendment law says police can seek consent to make a search. In the physical search context, the Court has consistently ignored the fact that people often feel they have no choice but to acquiesce. Consider the leading Supreme Court case on consent searches, United States v. Drayton. Two men are traveling by bus in Florida, when police board the bus and question passengers about their trip. The first man is asked to “consent'' to a pat down. He does—and the officer finds blocks of cocaine taped to his groin. After this first man is led away in handcuffs, the officer turns to his traveling companion and says, “Mind if I check you?'' The second man agrees. Drugs are found in exactly the same spot on his body. The Supreme Court holds that he consented to the search. My students, encountering Drayton for the first time, often have a moment of cognitive dissonance. Why, they wonder, did the suspect consent after he saw what happened to his friend? When I point out that both men were racial minorities in a jurisdiction with a history of police violence, and that neither was highly educated nor socially privileged, then the facts start to make more sense. Ironically, the Carpenter decision makes it more likely that police will aggressively exploit the weaknesses of the Court's consent case-law. By making it slightly more hassle to obtain cell-site locational data from a telephone company, the Court has encouraged police to exploit the frailty of its consent doctrine. That is, by making it harder to acquire electronic data from a third party, the Court has nudged police toward more forceful and unpleasant confrontations with citizens by which “consent'' can be secured. This should not count as a “success'' for Fourth Amendment freedoms. Electronic privacy rests on the rules and remedies that apply to the Fourth Amendment generally. In the past 40 years, those rules and remedies have been substantially eroded by a Court unwilling to constrain police. The result today is that even when a decision endorses Fourth Amendment protection—and requires a warrant, as in Carpenter -- that protection is easy to avoid, and likely ineffectual in practice. Aziz Huq is the Frank and Bernice J. Greenberg professor of law at the University of Chicago Law School.
http://boingboing.net/2018/06/26/software-formalities.html One of the more fascinating and horrible details in Reuters' thoroughly fascinating and horrible long-form report on Trump's cruel border policies is this nugget: ICE hacked the risk-assessment tool it used to decide whom to imprison so that it recommended that everyone should be detained. This gave ICE a kind of empirical facewash for its racist and inhumane policies: they could claim that the computer forced them to imprison people by identifying them as high-risk. The policy let ICE triple its detention rate, imprisoning 43,000 people. http://boingboing.net/2018/06/26/software-formalities.html
According to this story a customer alerted the company in November 2017. What is interesting is the pace and incompleteness of response, lack of information to customers and time for a complete fix. Apart from the (sadly) routine nature of the vulnerability story here, one of the risks I see is that of testing inherited legacy systems in company handovers/changes. A governance and due diligence question. http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/stuff-circuit/105039080/z-energy-security-beach-admitted-as-ceo-fronts-and-apologises Cue A-Z of system security joke.
While on vacation the home we rented was equipped with all manner of Internet of mistakes devices, including an Internet-connected television. At 0200 one morning, it switched on suddenly. Apparently, the owners -- out of convenience or pure ignorance—elected for firmware auto- updates. The family was startled, as the volume had been boosted by the flash memory save and reboot; the legacy off-state was not restored. The line-of-sight TV controls remained operative. Although the specific TV possesses features that can auto-detect user inactivity after a fixed duration, or if there's an extended loss of input signal, I cannot help imagining if the upgrade had bricked these soft switches, or it possessed a “thermal runaway'' virus maliciously designed to ignite the unit.
via NNSquad There is apparently a widespread—possibly global—Google Home outage. However, not all units are affected. Some of my units here are down, at least one is up. The down units act if they were factory reset and tell you to download the Home app. My recommendation is to NOT do so! DON'T CHANGE ANYTHING! Give Google time to deal with this from the server side.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-44628399 A leading security camera-maker has sent footage from inside a family's home to the wrong person's app. Swann Security has blamed a factory error for the data breach -- which was brought to its attention by the BBC—and said it was a “one-off'' incident. However, last month another customer reported a similar problem saying his version of the same app had received footage from a pub's CCTV system. Swann said it was attempting to recover the kit involved in this second case. [...] The BBC first learned of the problem on Saturday, when a member of its staff began receiving motion-triggered video clips from an unknown family's kitchen. Until that point, Louisa Lewis had only received footage from her own Swann security camera, which she had been using since December. The development coincided with Ms Lewis's camera running out of battery power and requiring a recharge. [...] A Swann customer representative told Ms Lewis that nothing could be done until after the weekend. And it was only after the matter was flagged to the firm's PR agency on Monday that she stopped receiving video clips. [...] Even if this were a factory error, the system shouldn't have failed absent multiple errors: the design of the manufacturing process, even given active quality control, should not have been dependent on a single point of failure. Most important, this failure mode should not have been possible (ok, the likelihood shouldn't have been anything but vanishingly small). Moreover, this seems to have happened more than once. Designers of these systems should, at least as an exercise, treat manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and even users as potentially hostile entities. This is especially true since firms are highly unlikely to have ownership and control of the entire chain of operations. For example, the credentials for one unit might accidentally be swapped by a retailer for those of another. Gross negligence is a form of hostility, and it is grossly negligent to assume the absence of human error..
I came across this interesting post: http://lmgsecurity.com/exposing-the-secret-office-365-forensics-tool/ Extract: “An ethical crisis in the digital forensics industry came to a head last week with the release of new details on Microsoft's undocumented `Activities' API. A previously unknown trove of access and activity logs held by Microsoft allows investigators to track Office 365 mailbox activity in minute detail. Following a long period of mystery and rumors about the existence of such a tool, the details finally emerged, thanks to a video by Anonymous and follow-up research by CrowdStrike. Now, investigators have access to a stockpile of granular activity data going back six months—even if audit logging was not enabled. For victims of Business Email Compromise (BEC), this is huge news, because investigators are now far more likely to be able to `rule out' unauthorized access to specific emails and attachments. Maybe I'm just picky, but I like to know what software is logging what activity, due to compliance and confidentiality needs. The two are frequently in conflict, so precision is essential. >From a privacy perspective, it appears it's time to revert to parchment, quill and ink..
Over the years, we've explored (and often shied away from) the idea of infosec pros as a kind of military or police force, protecting the general public from the digital/cybersecurity bad guys. So I find this article on protecting civilians in cyberspace, seemingly by people outside the traditional infosec community, quite interesting. The emphasis seems to be on human rights, rather than general computer use, but there are some intriguing ideas just the same. http://www.justsecurity.org/58838/protecting-civilians-cyberspace-ideas-road/ [Interesting name. It is Never *Just* Security, as (1) it is often something else as well, and (2) Security is never Just. PGN]
Malware can read, intercept, or tamper with the traffic of any HTTPS-protected site. http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2018/07/rash-of-fortnite-cheaters-infected-by-malware-that-breaks-https-encryption/
A command spread through Slack and Discord channels to cryptocurrency users is a trap. http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2018/07/really-dumb-malware-targets-cryptocurrency-fans-using-macs/
Sony Pictures Entertainment's movie `Khali the Killer' is on release in the United States and, as is customary, a trailer has been uploaded to YouTube. However, on closer inspection, it appears that Sony uploaded the entire movie in error. Oops. http://torrentfreak.com/sony-blunders-uploading-full-movie-youtube-instead-trailer-180703/ The price is right... [Monty Solomon noted this item: http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2018/07/sony-tries-to-upload-movie-trailer-to-youtube-posts-entire-movie-instead/ PGN]
Zack Whittaker for Zero Day | 2 Jul 2018 http://www.zdnet.com/article/homeland-security-subpoenas-twitter-for-data-breach-finders-account/ Homeland Security has served Twitter with a subpoena, demanding the account information of a data breach finder, credited with finding several large caches of exposed and leaking data. The New Zealand national, whose name isn't known but goes by the handle Flash Gordon, revealed the subpoena in a tweet last month. Also: Homeland Security's own IT security is a hot mess, watchdog finds The pseudonymous data breach finder regularly tweets about leaked data found on exposed and unprotected servers. Last year, he found a trove of almost a million patients' data leaking from a medical telemarketing firm. A recent find included an exposed cache of law enforcement data by ALERRT, a Texas State University-based organization, which trains police and civilians against active shooters. The database, secured in March but reported last week, revealed that several police departments were under-resourced and unable to respond to active shooter situations. Homeland Security's export control agency, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), served the subpoena to Twitter on April 24, demanding information about the data breach finder's account. [Also noted by Gene Wirchenko. PGN]
NNSquad http://gizmodo.com/wikipedia-italy-blocks-all-articles-in-protest-of-eus-r-1827312550 On Tuesday, Wikipedia Italy set all of its pages to redirect to a statement raising awareness for the upcoming vote that (barring some legislative wrangling) would make the copyright directive law. The statement reads, in part (emphasis theirs): On July 5, 2018, The Plenary of the European Parliament will vote whether to proceed with a copyright directive proposal which, if approved, will significantly harm the openness of the Internet. The directive instead of updating the copyright laws in Europe and promoting the participation of all the citizens to the society of information, threatens online freedom and creates obstacles to accessing the Web, imposing new barriers, filters and restrictions. If the proposal would be approved in its current form, it could be impossible to share a news article on social networks, or find it through a search engine; Wikipedia itself would be at risk. Just a taste of what's coming to European Internet users if those laws are enacted.
Marcia Frellick, Medscape, 14 Jun 2018 http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/898065%3Fsrc%3DWNL_infoc_180627_MSCPEDIT_hospmed%26uac%3D64984BJ%26impID%3D1667063%26faf%3D1 The recent communications outage at Sutter Health, the largest health system in northern California, which cut off access to electronic health records (EHRs), highlighted the frequency of such outages and the need for backup plans and drills nationwide. [...] Andrew Gettinger, MD, chief clinical officer for the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, part of the US Department of Health and Human Services, said all systems need backup plans and pointed to the recommendation from the Joint Commission for annual disaster drills. “It's not a question of IS your system going to be unavailable, because I think almost every computer system in every context is at some time or another not available,'' he told /Medscape Medical News/. “The question is then—what's the institutional contingency plan?'' Gettinger said that downtime for computer systems is not unlike other disasters health systems plan for regularly. “It's no different from what happens when the power in the building goes out or the water supply goes out or you're no longer able to get compressed oxygen or nitrous oxide. I don't think patients or doctors really need to be worried about it unnecessarily.'' All health systems should know about the SAFER guides <https://www.healthit.gov/topic/safety/safer-guides> (Safety Assurance Factors for EHR Resilience), put in place to address EHR safety nationally, Gettinger said. The guides were updated last year. Dean Sittig, PhD, a professor at the University of Texas Health's School of Biomedical Informatics, helped write those guidelines and also was lead author on a study in 2014 <https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25200197> that surveyed US-based healthcare institutions that were part of a professional collaborative on their exposure to downtime. In that study, researchers found that nearly all (96%) of the 50 large, integrated institutions who responded had at least one unplanned downtime in the past 3 years and 70% had at least one unplanned downtime greater than 8 hours in the past 3 years. [...] In another paper http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMsb1205420 Sittig wrote that, in April 2010, one third of the hospitals in Rhode Island had to delay elective surgeries and divert some patients when an automatic antivirus update crashed the system. “You depend on the computer for everything—registration, scheduling, past visit notes, results of laboratory tests. The healthcare system is now dependent on the electronic health record to care for patients,'' Sittig told /Medscape Medical News/. In the Sutter case, a fire-suppression system was activated. Sittig explained that the suppressions systems in data centers typically involve an alarm going off to alert people to get out of the room, then doors lock and all the oxygen is sucked out of the room and replaced with fire-retardant gas. Because the gas has to be flushed out, then the oxygen levels restored, then the computers restarted, “you're talking probably a minimum of 4-6 hours,'' Sittig says. “That's when everything works perfectly.'' He said systems should expect accidents to happen and that they will be costly. “A big hospital probably loses at least $1 million per hour when they're down,'' Sittig said. But investments in data protection can be a hard sell. A chief financial officer, Sittig said, may say a $3 million backup data center is too expensive, for example. “You have to ask them, 'Can you afford to be down 5 hours? That will cost us $5 million. So we should spend the $3 million as an insurance policy,' '' Sittig said. Adding to the problem, he said, is that in the modern healthcare system, with an institution that's been using an EHR 5 or more years, many young providers have never worked in a place that has a paper system and aren't familiar with those operations. Sittig added that paper systems are subject to their own dangers—fire, water, and wind, for example. But electronic records that make it easy to spread information instantly across hospitals, sometimes in many states, also can mean instant, massive failures. The first thing hospital systems do when a disaster strikes, Sittig says, is decide what can be cut, and the first thing to go is usually the elective surgeries. Then ambulances may be instructed to take patients elsewhere. “Then you try to discharge the people who aren't very sick. Then they start sending people home early. We've created a system where we're relying on an electromechanical device that we know is going to break. There's no question computers are going to break.''
People are discovering that scammers are controlling their Apple accounts using a feature for families to share apps When David tried to download apps on his iPhone and iPad recently, he found he wasn't able to because his account was linked to something called *Family Sharing*. That's a feature that Apple introduced in 2014 to make it easier to share apps, iCloud storage, and iTunes content like music and movies with up to five family members. But this was news to David, who says he didn't remember turning on Family Sharing. After he dug into his account settings, he received a popup that to remove himself from the Family Sharing account he needed to contact a name that was in Chinese—and he had no way to get in touch. http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-family-sharing-feature-used-by-scammers-to-make-purchases-hacked-accounts-2018-6
Corinne Reichert, ZDNet, 3 Jul 2018 Mobile access to U.S. telecommunications networks would carry a `substantial and unacceptable risk' to national security and law enforcement, the U.S. government has said. http://www.zdnet.com/article/trump-administration-tells-fcc-to-block-china-mobile-from-us/ selected text: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has been advised by the Executive Branch to deny China Mobile entry to the United States telecommunications industry, citing “substantial and unacceptable risk to US law enforcement and foreign intelligence collection''. The Executive Branch, which includes the Departments of Justice, Homeland Security, Defense, State, and Commerce, along with the Offices of Science and Technology Policy and the US Trade Representative, made the recommendation almost seven years after China Mobile International (USA) made the application for a certificate under s214 of the Communications Act. A 2013 letter [PDF] from counsel for China Mobile USA had noted the “extreme delay'' in granting the licence—which was originally applied for in September 2011—saying the delay “is causing significant and unwarranted harm to China Mobile USA's business operations''. Huawei Australian chair John Lord last week said the Chinese technology giant is the most audited, inspected, reviewed, and critiqued IT company in the world, and has never had a national security issue. “After every kind of inspection, audit, review, nothing sinister has been found. No wrongdoing, no criminal action or intent, no 'back door', no planted vulnerability, and no 'magical kill switch'. In fact, in our three decades as a company no evidence of any sort has been provided to justify these concerns by anyone—ever.''
http://www.latimes.com/business/technology/la-fi-tn-google-artificial-intelligence-healthcare-20180618-story.html “What impressed medical experts most was Google's ability to sift through data previously out of reach: notes buried in PDFs or scribbled on old charts. The neural net gobbled up all this unruly information then spat out predictions. And it did so far faster and more accurately than existing techniques. Google's system even showed which records led it to conclusions. “Dean envisions the AI system steering doctors toward certain medications and diagnoses. Another Google researcher said existing models miss obvious medical events, including whether a patient had prior surgery. The person described existing hand-coded models as `an obvious, gigantic roadblock' in healthcare. The person asked not to be identified discussing work in progress. “For all the optimism over Google's potential, harnessing AI to improve healthcare outcomes remains a huge challenge. Other companies, notably IBM's Watson unit, have tried to apply AI to medicine but have had limited success saving money and integrating the technology into reimbursement systems.'' The perfect *death panel* proxy, and no longer a burden to physicians, bioethicists, insurance agents, hospital administrators, and patient advocates, Google's Medical Brain AI platform calculates a human life's merit score. Can this platform factor patient quality of life outcome potential into the learning algorithm's neural network processing decisions? What weight would this factor possess relative to the others? Under what medical conditions is this platform relevant to even consult? What happens if a test result applied as an input, such as for blood chemistry, is skewed by a contaminated reagent? Until proven to improve health care outcomes, if ever, a "blackbox warning label'' seems like a wise precaution. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boxed_warning. Will Google's Medical Brain employees and immediate family members be required to participate in a randomize control trial using the Medical Brain AI platform?
Harold Fel, WetMachine, 28 Jun 2018 http://www.wetmachine.com/tales-of-the-sausage-factory/so-what-the-heck-does-5g-actually-do-and-is-it-worth-what-the-carriers-are-demanding/ It's become increasingly impossible to talk about spectrum policy without getting into the fight over whether 5G is a miracle technology that will end poverty, war and disease or an evil marketing scam by wireless carriers to extort concessions in exchange for magic beans. Mind you, most people never talk about spectrum policy at all—so they are spared this problem in the first place. But with T-Mobile and Sprint now invoking 5G as a central reason to let them merge, it's important for people to understand precisely what 5G actually does. Unfortunately, when you ask most people in Policyland what 5G actually does and how it works, the discussion looks a lot like the discussion in Hitchhikers Guide To the Galaxy where Deep Thought announces that the answer to Life the Universe and Everything is `42'. So while not an engineer, I have spent the last two weeks or so doing a deep dive on what, exactly does 5G actually do—with a particular emphasis on the recently released 3GPP standard (Release 15) that everyone is celebrating as the first real industry standard for 5G. My conclusion is that while the Emperor is not naked, that is one Hell of a skimpy thong he's got on. More precisely, the bunch of different things that people talk about when they say `5G': millimeter wave spectrum, network slicing, and something called (I am not making this up) `flexible numerology' are real. They represent improvements in existing wireless technology that will enhance overall efficiency and thus add capacity to the network (and also reduce latency). But, as a number of the more serious commentators (such as Dave Burstien over here) have pointed out, we can already do these things using existing LTE (plain old 4G). Given the timetable for development and deployment of new 5G network technology, it will be at least 5 years before we see more than incremental improvement in function and performance. Put another way, it would be like calling the adoption of a new version of Wi-Fi `C5G Wi-Fi.' (Which I am totally going to do from now on, btw, because why not?) I elaborate more below . . . There are a bunch of important questions to keep in mind when evaluating what we ought to do about 5G as a policy question. (a) What exactly is 5G? (b) How does it compare to existing LTE? and, (c) How much are we being asked to pay for it in policy terms? What Exactly Do We Mean By CG CG technically means `generation'. My favorite explanation can be found in this old Best Buy commercial. As a general rule, we use `G' to indicate a significant shift in capability, architecture and technology. For example, the shift from analog to digital voice in 2G, or the inclusion of limited data capability as an overlay to voice in 3G. The shift to 4G was marked by a shift to an all packet-switched data network in which voice is supported as one feature on the network. In addition, 4G turned out to be fairly homogeneous for a variety of reasons I won't get into now. Basically, after a brief flirtation by Sprint and a few others with WiMax, all the carriers ended up using LTE. So the switch to 5G ought to mean a major boost in both technology and speed. And it will, eventually. But for now, it's not so much a generational shift like the previous shifts but a modest transition over time. By that I don't mean simply that we will see 5G networks operating with 4G cores for a long time. That's always true. Carriers deployed LTE and still maintained (some to this day) 3G networks in parallel. That is necessary so that people and businesses can switch legacy equipment at a rational pace. What I mean is that the capabilities that are supposed to make 5G so awesome are not really that awesome right now, and won't be for at least 5 more years. What Makes 5G More Awesome? Here is where it gets confusing. You can see a good tutorial on the network architecture here. But this represents a relatively recent change in how we talk about 5G. Originally, i.e., back in 2015, we were talking about millimeter wave as 5G, with nothing else going on in the lower frequencies counting as 5G. [...]
When the developers of EVE Online added expensive in-game vanity items... it went poorly. http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2018/07/monocles/
[Suitably revised, this submission might make a good April Fool's comp.risks contribution in 2019. And jolt a few CxOs from their Caesar salad lunch. od -c output attached below for peace of mind.] http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/gaming-disorder-is-only-a-symptom-of-a-much-larger-problem/2018/06/29/64f2866a-7a21-11e8-93cc-6d3beccdd7a3_story.html Mobile electronic devices generate addiction symptoms that mirror those caused by nicotine. The iGen—young people raised on smart phones and social media—are especially vulnerable to screen addiction disorder. Would an enterprising state attorney general attempt the equivalent of a “Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement'' http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tobacco_Master_Settlement_Agreement) against mobile device manufacturers, application developers, and social media for public health expenditures arising from treatment? >From the MSA wikipedia page: “The general theory of these lawsuits was that the cigarettes produced by the tobacco industry contributed to health problems among the population, which in turn resulted in significant costs to the states' public health systems.'' Recall that the Tobacco MSA amounted to settlement payments from tobacco firms for ~$US 200-375B over 25 years to reimburse states for expenses arising from tobacco-related illness and disease treatment. The MSA also imposed restrictions that prohibited tobacco advertisements toward young people—a core audience for addictive products, and a business model impediment that penalizes income capture potential. Hypothetically, would substitution of “mobile devices, apps, and social media'' for “tobacco'' (the MOBASS MSA?) in an equivalent agreement be viable? The epidemiological evidence, per states' public health system impact to date, might not immediately substantiate this extrapolation. As evidence linking tobacco usage to illness accumulated from the 1950s through 1990s, so might evidence of screen addiction disorder and the affects it introduces. The spectacle of mobile device, social media, and application vendors called to testify under oath before Congress that “our products are not addictive'' would rival the perjury committed by tobacco industry executive predecessors. Michael Mann's “The Insider'' http://www.imdbcom/title/tt0140352/?ref_=nv_sr_2) might need a sequel!
Like many in the UK I was contacted by Ticketmaster to let me know that my data might have been accessed through malicious software on the servers of a third party service provider. They have very kindly offered me a years free identity monitoring by Experian. The issue? The email tells me to sign up by... "Visit the Data Patrol website to get started: http://my.garlik.com/garlik-ui/expnuk/login http://click.customerservice.tmm.ticketmaster.co.uk ... Not a Ticketmaster site, not an Experian site, just a site that screams ***SCAM***!!! A minute or two googling tells me that this is probably the legitimate service provider but this really isn't how to give customers confidence that you take security seriously!
This has been used in British Columbia for a decade, has proved quite effective, and is pretty much settled case law in both Criminal and Civil cases. In BC Driver Licencing and BC Service Card issuing for the BC Medical Services Plan have been offloaded out of core government to a Crown Corporation, the Insurance Corporation of BC. Photo ID Service Cards for MSP are a relatively new development. The Original BC “Care Cards'' did not have photos and involved little or no verification of the identity of who they were issued to. BC Residents have the option of combining the BC Service Card and BC Driver's Licence into one card, or having separate cards. Most Privacy Professionals I have discussed this with chose to to have separate cards. I have overnight dialysis in a clinic 3 times a week, so I just take my BC Service Card and a transit pass with me. The BC Liquor Control Board used to issue its own Photo ID cards, decades ago, but those were also offloaded onto ICBC as “BC ID Cards'' for people who did not have a BC Driver's Licence, such as a former premier who surrendered his DL after being caught driving under the influence in Hawaii. There have been at least two widely reported instances where Facial Recognition has been used to trigger investigations, or to identify criminals from photos. After the 2011 Stanley Cup Riot in Vancouver ICBC offered to scan its Facial Image DB, using the same recognition software that ICBC began using in 2008, without notice to customers, to detect attempts at Driver's Licence Fraud. ICBC had a vested interest in identifying the Rioters who damaged or destroyed automobiles insured by ICBC and later sued at least 46 people in Civil Actions. Facial Images flagged as possible Fraud attempts are reviewed by Police, not by ICBC employees. Bio-metric factors as height, weight, and eye colour are also used in the matching, not just Facial Recognition. http://www.burnabynow.com/news/six-burnaby-defendants-in-icbc-stanley-cup-riot-civil-suit-1.1896960 BC Information and Privacy Commissioner Elizabeth Denham ruled that ICBC could only do that with due process. Police turned to the Internet and crowd sourced identification of the rioters from pictures posted on the web. That turned out to be very effective, resulting in tips about the names of hundreds of rioters. Human eyes still beat facial recognition? http://www.macleans.ca/news/last-two-stanley-cup-rioters-sentenced-to-time-behind-bars-for-assault/ “Prosecutors laid 912 charges against 300 suspects, and 284 people pleaded guilty. Another six had the charges against them stayed, while 10 went to trial, resulting in nine convictions and one acquittal.'' Elizabeth Denham is now the UK Data Commissioner responsible for investigating the Cambridge Analytica scandal. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/police-can-t-use-icbc-facial-recognition-to-track-rioters-1.1207398 http://www.oipc.bc.ca/investigation-reports/1245 Executive Summary  “I conclude that ICBC must immediately cease responding to requests from police to use the facial recognition database for the purposes of identifying individuals for police absent a subpoena, warrant or court order.'' ICBC's undisclosed use of Facial Recognition to detect attempts at DL Fraud became public knowledge when RCMP arrived at a Government Office in Victoria to arrest a Civil Servant who had a meteoric rise under the name Richard Perran. That turned out to be a family affair, with his wife also working in the BC Public Service Under a stolen identity. He had also obtained a Public Service subsidized Master's Degree from the University of Victoria, and tried to leverage that into at PhD under the stolen name after being convicted, despite being ordered to stop using the stolen name as a condition of sentencing and probation. http://www.timescolonist.com/icbc-fraud-check-snared-civil-servant-accused-of-altering-record-to-get-government-job-1.21668 http://bctrialofbasi-virk.blogspot.com/2009/12/police-probe-hiring-of-bc-civil-servant.html http://www.pressreader.com/canada/times-colonist/20120617/281479273491097
Did Security Administrators at the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) detect the fact that IDs were not being used and ask why the users were not using assigned IDs? If so did they pursue that with management in the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Service? The report cited in RISKS says that the Florida OIG detected the issue. I was a top-level RACF Security Admin for the BC Ministry of Health from 1980 until 2016, first in the BC Public Service and later as a Contracted Resource working for a world scale IT Services company with its HQ in Montreal. One of the auto generated routine reports that I had to review was a report of IDs that had expired passwords because the User had not changed the password for more than 60 days. Last-Use Date was also tracked. Part of my job was repeatedly nagging user supervisors about whether the person the ID was issued to was still working in a position that required access, based on the expired password and the last use date. Repeating the query at regular intervals was part of my job even though it tended to make me seem like a broken record. Responding to requests for new user IDs was something I used to revisit the matter. That is, why did the area need a new user ID when it had been issued positional IDs that had not been used in years, or even decades. Positional IDs are associated with a specific job function. If a user leaves, or changes job roles they get a new ID associated with the new role. The old ID should be reassigned deactivated, or deleted as part of that transition.
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