Pegasus enables warfare

Cyber war is evolving to a state where there could be conventional warfare in retaliation for a cyber attack. You can use my paywall hack to view this article if you are not a NYT subscriber (
“Cyberweapons have changed international relations more profoundly than any advance since the advent of the atomic bomb. In some ways, they are even more profoundly destabilizing — they are cheap, easily distributed and can be deployed without consequences to the attacker. Dealing with their proliferation is radically changing the nature of state relations, as Israel long ago discovered and the rest of the world is now also beginning to understand.
“More than 75 years after the invention of nuclear weapons, only nine countries appear to have a usable one. But dozens of countries already have cyberweapons. ‘Everybody seems to want them,’ Mark told me, ‘and this gives enormous power to the countries who sell them and can use them for diplomatic advantage.’
“It has also led to a huge increase in government spying, for good and for ill.”

Gadgets 01/15/2022: CES tech, DJI Mavic drone, Best Buy TVs, Galaxy entry level phone

Late stuff from CES:

This is a slick projector, but looks like currently out of stock at both Amazon and Samsung. 180 degrees, speaker sound waves in all directions, streaming apps, playlist, voice assistants. “The projector optimizes screen size, auto-focuses, and levels the image even when pointed on an angle.” Also adjusts the color temperature of the projector to accommodate non-white walls, and has built-in Samsung Smart TV.

New Garmin smartwatch with phone call and voice assistant support, and AMOLED display.

This is crazy cool stuff. Is foldable tech maturing?

More CES tech
Best of CES 2022: Gaming Gear, PCs, Home Entertainment, Transportation | WIRED

Other stuff:

I’m not a drone guy, but ZDNet raving about this for 2022.

These deals are wow. Want to upgrade one of my TVs.

Got one of these entry level phones for my mom. Simple and does all she wants. I really don’t know why you would need anything else.


Cyber Risk Assessment, Pt. II

Cyber Risk Assessment, Pt. I

3. Vulnerability Assessment (also known as “security posture assessment”) – An in-depth examination of the assets from the inventory to gauge their weaknesses or vulnerabilities. [Our] vulnerability assessments uncover gaps in your security and drive our overall risk management. While threats can come from both inside and outside your organization, vulnerabilities are internal factors. We look for your organization’s structural flaws and weaknesses, how effective your current safeguards are (vulnerability appraisal), and the weaknesses that remain in spite of them. We captures a picture of your network’s and data’s security. Every possible contingency will be gauged for multiple vulnerabilities. Our team’s diverse backgrounds and experience enables us to consider all the weaknesses specific to your organization. Testing cyber infrastructure is an indispensable part of what we do. We use industry-standard tools like Nessus, Nmap, and Metasploit to test for vulnerabilities, examining every available host, services, OS, ports, firewalls, software and firmware vulnerabilities, unencrypted and sensitive data, and permissions. We may also conduct penetration testing and red team-blue team exercises, and examine your data that is online right now that may aid in a threat actor’s social engineering tactics. Continue reading “Cyber Risk Assessment, Pt. II”

Business Continuity in the Age of Ransomware

The goal of Disaster Recovery Planning is to enable a company to continue doing business in the least amount of interruption. Parts of the plan should include:

1. Which data and systems are backed up, as well as specific details like where the backups should be kept, how frequently are they made, and how the data can be recovered.
2. Details on network topology, redundancy and agreements with Internet Service Providers.
3. Contact information for the team who are charged with response and recovery.
4. The process for testing the DRP.
5. A plan for managing the crisis, including dealing with outside contacts, and communicating with the media, law enforcement and legal counsel.

The goal is to decrease the risks of losing critical data.

Ransomware disaster recovery is one of the essential tasks that a company should engage in, but other crises can also be averted or dealt with through this sort of plan.

Makes sure to keep MalwareBytes NY resolutions

Per MalwareBytes (and me):

Say “yes” to updates
Installing updates promptly is one of the best ways to be more cybersecure. Next time an app offers you an update, click “yes” instead of “no”, “cancel” or “remind me later”. (Do you know where it came from?)

Say “no” to feeble passwords
Strong passwords keep your data safe, so don’t let yourself choose feeble passwords in 2022, and if somebody shares a password with you, or asks for yours, just say “no.” (My passwords are generally very strong with financial, job or security sites.)

Say “woah” to unexpected messages
Scams come in all shapes and sizes, but no matter how they’re dressed up, they always want something valuable, URGENTLY. So don’t be rushed—take your time in 2022.
(Remember: if it sounds too good to be true…)

Geek risk management

An asset provides value to user or company and has a relative worth.

Assets are people, physical assets (computers, network equipment), and IT assets (HW, SW, data). An asset’s relative worth is determined through its positive economic value and can have different values based on criticality to the organization.

Asset – in this case Joe Dork’s 1990s collection of Star Trek TOS VHS cassettes.
Vulnerability – Unlocked basement door to Dork’s room in parents’ home.
Vector – Going through the unlocked door.
Threat Actor – Beautiful cosplay girl.
Threat – Theft of tapes.
Risk – Stolen VHS.

Not only are your direct assets something to catalog, but you should also assess your supply chain assets, in all steps from supplier to consumer. Vendors should be cataloging their assets and the threats to it. The SolarWinds hack came from a supply chain vulnerability.

There’s zero chance that Dork’s VHS assets will be stolen by any cosplay girl, but you must perform a continuing asset inventory before any exploitation of vulnerabilities takes place.

We should be concerned about IoT devices

The Internet of Things (IoT) sounds like some kind of set of devices which we don’t have to be concerned about, e.g. “it’s only a thermostat (or a bedroom light).” But IoT can also be comprised of smartphones, printers, self-driving cars, Google Home, Amazon Alexa, Apple Homekit, wearables, door locks, connected LEDs, laptops, pacemakers, hospital devices, assisted living companions, microchipped animals, smart padlocks (possibly accessed by fingerprint), smart toys and other sensors. So systems that were intended to make life easier can also make security and privacy a concern. (Baby monitors and toys listening or talking to your child). Continue reading “We should be concerned about IoT devices”