Recalling other crisis management fails - in the wake of Facebook's stunning (and probably feigned) ignorance of data exfiltration on their own platform: Via the obviously talented Michael Grothaus, whilst writing at Fast Company, comes this interesting recent history of crisis management at companies-of-note. You will - I am certain - notice a recurring theme of fathomless lack of intellectual capacity. Today's Must Read and filed under 'Blatant Stupidity'. Enjoy!
Quite likely, the single most significant data security educational series of blog posts this year - via the Imperva Cyber Security Blog,written by Elad Erez and Luda Lazar - now in Part 3 of the series (Part 1 and Part 2 are highly recommended as well). Rather than put my spin on what Elad and Luda have presented on the Imperva blog, I'll let their brilliant speak tell the tale! Today's highly important Must Reads.
Superlative AWS blog post by Alex Tomic and Cameron Worrell, detailing some of the best news yet in encryption capability on Amazon Web Services - table contained field level encrytion. With prudent end-to-end cryptographically protected data objects, I cannot emphasize how important it is to make this form of data-at-rest encryption available to your Security Architects, DBAs, Developers and Security Engineers as part of that end-to-end solution. Outstanding.
"Field-level encryption addresses this problem by ensuring sensitive data is encrypted at CloudFront edge locations. Sensitive data fields in HTTPS form POSTs are automatically encrypted with a user-provided public RSA key. After the data is encrypted, other systems in your architecture see only ciphertext. If this ciphertext unintentionally becomes externally available, the data is cryptographically protected and only designated systems with access to the private RSA key can decrypt the sensitive data." - AWS Blog Posting by Alex Tomic and Cameron Worrell
via Gizmodo investigative reporter Dell Cameron, comes the astounding news of the systemic incompetence in properly handling secret documents and other artifiacts stored within the cloud (in this case, AWS S3 Buckets) by a well established contractor to the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA). Certainly, a first-rate example of an Expanding Cloud of Lethal Stupidity (ECOLS).
Where does the organization in question fall within the Noel Burch Hierarchy of Competence model?. Should the culprits in this scenario be prosecuted? You be the judge. Truly astounding, indeed.
"A cache of more than 60,000 files was discovered last week on a publicly accessible Amazon server, including passwords to a US government system containing sensitive information, and the security credentials of a lead senior engineer at Booz Allen Hamilton, one of the nation’s top intelligence and defense contractors. What’s more, the roughly 28GB of data contained at least a half dozen unencrypted passwords belonging to government contractors with Top Secret Facility Clearance." - via Gizmodo reporter Dell Cameron
News of an interesting privacy related lawsuit, via Fortune writer Jeff John Roberts, is now swirling around personal electronics manufacturer Bose Corporation. Apparently, collecting data (and a viloation of the so-called Wire Tap Act (Codified in 18 U.S.C. §§ 2510-2522)) - through a companion app to the company's best-in-class noise canceling headphones, and the misuse thereof, is the gist... Stay Tuned. Hat Tip
"The complaint accuses Boston-based Bose of violating the WireTap Act and a variety of state privacy laws, adding that a person's audio history can include a window into a person's life and views. "Indeed, one’s personal audio selections – including music, radio broadcast, Podcast, and lecture choices – provide an incredible amount of insight into his or her personality, behavior, political views, and personal identity," says the complaint, noting a person's audio history may contain files like LGBT podcasts or Muslim call-to-prayer recordings." - via Fortune writer Jeff John Roberts
General Chair for the Organizing Committe of the ACM Conference on Data and Appilication Security and Privacy - Gail-Joon Ahn - has issued a Call for Participation for the Confab. Slated for March 22, 2017 through and inclusive of March 24, 2017. THis is sure to be an outstanding conference, with both two outstanding keynotes (which can be found here: http://www.codaspy.org/keynotes/.
- General Chair: Gail-Joon Ahn, Arizona State University
- Program Co-Chairs: Gabriel Ghinita, University of Massachusetts at Boston, Alexander Pretschner, Technische Universität München
- Industry Track Chair: Elisa Bertino, Purdue University
- Poster Chair: Jaehong Park, University of Alabama in Huntsville
- Panel Chair: Adam Doupe, Arizona State University
- Proceedings Chairs: Martin Ochoa, Singapore University of Tech. and Design and Hongxin Hu, Clemson University
- Publicity and Web Chair: Ram Krishnan, UT San Antonio
- Workshop Chair: Adam Lee, University of Pittsburgh
- Local Chair: Ziming Zhao, Arizona State University
- Organization Chairs: Kristina Nelson, Arizona State University and
- Melissa Pagnozzi, Arizona State University
- Steering Committee: Ravi Sandhu, UT San Antonio (Co-Chair), Elisa Bertino, Purdue University (Co-Chair), Alexander Pretschner, Technische Universität München and Gail-Joon Ahn, Arizona State University
My suggestion is to, um - perhaps...not expose your database layer to external contact... Perhaps a DENY ALL to rule for your MongoDB deployment in your firewall would be helpful as well... just saying. Oh, and very good advice from Lucian at the end of his reportage: Use the MongoDB security checklist. It is - I can assure you - prietenul tău!. I also strongly suggest taking the time to read the Security Hardening documention from MongoDB; you can also download an EPUB version of the MongoDB manual. You'll be glad you did. That is all.
News, of Microsoft Corporation (NasdaqGS: MSFT) selling of customer telemetry on Windows 10 has come to light via Martin Kauffman on GHacks. Martin superlatively details the phenomenal audacity of Microsoft in the matter of selling usage information; and, while not surprising, just another indicator of the onerous feet-of-clay syndrome now evident in Redmond. Oh, and by-the-way, the data being shared is with a security firm, simply astounding. As always, you be the judge.