6mo cybersec headlines/ highlights/ overview, topnotch links

cookhi all its been a white-hot 6mo for cybersecurity issues. the age of “cyber/infowarfare” forecasted long ago seems to be realized now. the massive blizzard of news almost makes me regret somewhat the sheer edginess of this blog & trying to keep up with the torrent and taxes even my own highly exercised/ refined tracking capabilities. but on the other hand it seems to show no signs of abating and is likely to continue to be a key theme of the massive public-private-govt-corporate-cyberspace nexus (shew!).

the san bernadino shooting put crypto into the spotlight where the govt is saying it cant get access to encrypted iphone data. apple has been rejecting govt demands for decryption of iphone data for months, but it finally hit a real boiling point this week with the CEO Cook writing an open letter, and massive headlines ensuing all over the internet. this seems to be a high-stakes/ giant/ massive game of “chicken” in the 21st century cyberspace age. hoo boy am really rooting for him, he sure has some steel cojones there but seems to be playing a very dangerous/ risky game with the govt and all its power and would have expected many other CEOs at his level to quickly fold and cower behind lawyers.[a]

scalia died last week. a vision comes to my mind: what about a supreme court decision that rules that encryption is protected by freedom of speech? hell, corporations are allowed to buy elections based on it (the notorious Citizens United), so why cant civilians encrypt data based on it? somehow that seems an unlikely decision and it might seem that these days, citizens have even fewer rights than corporations… (although as the apple case shows even corporations are being pressed these days…)

since my last post, the ashley madison hack had huge repercussions and generated much media coverage also. the large company was heavily damaged in its PR and brand but seems to have mostly recovered at this point. it also revealed a lot of shady business practices such as fake, possibly even company-sanctioned accounts.[b]

cryptography is making massive international headlines. there is a strong push to try to ban it somewhat emanating in the US govt, but not with obama directly, but with him apparently approving the policy, standing in the shadows as the US military industrial complex tightens the screws on corporations. this is an old issue that goes back decades but is gaining new life, sort of like a recurring zombie. also ISIS is rumored to be employing/ mastering encryption technology although reports on that are controversial and vary.[c]

so there is some talk of surveillance increases or an internet crackdown. the election year speechmaking froth is contributing to this somewhat with candidates jockeying over their positions, and Trump calling for internet restrictions.[d]

NSA huge in the headlines.[e] Clintons emails are turning into a massive political issue, who would have thought? [f]

china hacking still looms large with obama making statements on it.[g]

assange/ wikileaks/ manning still generate headlines.[h]

its a long trail of despair and sorrow, the section on breaches/ hacks/ attacks.[i] there are two major dimensions of cybersecurity, govt [k] and corporate [m] but the lines are tending to blur a lot. a lot of critical US infrastructure is run by corporations eg stock markets, power plants etc… the old distinctions start to get messed up.


a. apple
b. ashley madison
c. crypto
d. surveillance/ crackdown
e. nsa
f. clinton
g. china
h. assange/ wikileaks/ snowden/ manning
i. hacks/ breaches/ attacks
j. cybersec
k. cybersec govt
l. cia hack
m. cybersec corp

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