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News alert: ThreatHunter.ai stops hundreds of ransomware attacks, nation-state threats in 48 hours

Brea, Calif. Feb. 27, 2024 — The current large surge in cyber threats has left many organizations grappling for security so ThreatHunter.ai is taking decisive action.

Recognizing the critical juncture at which the digital world stands, ThreatHunter.ai is now offering their cutting-edge cybersecurity services free of charge to all organizations for 30 days, irrespective of their current cybersecurity measures.

James McMurry, Founder of ThreatHunter.ai, reflects on the urgency of the situation, “In the past 48 hours alone, we have stopped hundreds of actual attacks and performed mitigations for our customers. Yet, the frequency and sophistication of these attacks are escalating at an alarming rate. Our mission is clear: to extend our protective reach to every organization in need, ensuring that the digital frontier is safe for all.”

Drawing on recent events and the resilient nature of cyber threats, as highlighted in an insightful piece on the LockBit ransomware saga, it’s evident that the cybersecurity landscape is more volatile than ever. The LockBit group’s audacity in bouncing back after a significant takedown operation underlines the persistent and evolving threat posed by cybercriminals. (more…)

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SHARED INTEL: Poll shows companies pursuing ‘Digital Trust’ reap benefits as laggards fall behind

By Byron V. Acohido

Achieving “digital trust” is not going terribly well globally.

Related: How decentralized IoT boosts decarbonization

Yet, more so than ever, infusing trustworthiness into modern-day digital services has become mission critical for most businesses. Now comes survey findings that could perhaps help to move things in the right direction.

According to DigiCert’s 2024 State of Digital Trust Survey results, released today, companies proactively pursuing digital trust are seeing boosts in revenue, innovation and productivity. Conversely, organizations lagging may be flirting with disaster.

“The gap between the leaders and the laggards is growing,” says Brian Trzupek, DigiCert’s senior vice president of product. “If you factor in where we are in the world today with things like IoT, quantum computing and generative AI, we could be heading for a huge trust crisis.”

DigiCert polled some 300 IT, cybersecurity and DevOps professionals across North America, Europe and APAC. I sat down with Trzupek and Mike Nelson, DigiCert’s Global Vice President of Digital Trust, to discuss the wider implications of the survey findings. My takeaways: (more…)

GUEST ESSAY: Everything you should know about the cybersecurity vulnerabilities of AI chatbots

By Zac Amos

AI chatbots are computer programs that talk like humans, gaining popularity for quick responses. They boost customer service, efficiency and user experience by offering constant help, handling routine tasks, and providing prompt and personalized interactions.

Related: The security case for AR, VR

AI chatbots use natural language processing, which enables them to understand and respond to human language and machine learning algorithms. This helps them improve their performance over time by gaining data from interactions.

In 2022, 88% of users relied on chatbots when interacting with businesses. These tools saved 2.5 billion work hours in 2023 and helped raise customer satisfaction to 69% for $0.50 to $0.70 per interaction. Forty-eight percent of consumers favor their efficiency prioritization. (more…)

DEEP TECH NEWS: Respecting individual rights by using ‘privacy preserving aggregate statistics’

By Byron V. Acohido

To sell us more goods and services, the algorithms of Google, Facebook and Amazon exhaustively parse our digital footprints.

Related: The role of ‘attribute based encryption’

There’s nothing intrinsically wrong with companies seeking to better understand their customers. However, over the past 20 years the practice of analyzing user data hasn’t advanced much beyond serving the business models of these tech giants.

That could be about to change. Scientists at NTT Research are working on an advanced type of cryptography that enables businesses to perform aggregate data analysis on user data — without infringing upon individual privacy rights.

I had the chance to visit with , senior scientist at NTT Research’s Cryptography & Information Security (CIS) Lab, to learn more about the progress being made on a promising concept called “privacy preserving aggregate statistics.” (more…)

STEPS FORWARD: How decentralizing IoT could help save the planet — by driving decarbonization

By Byron V. Acohido

The Internet of Things (IoT) is on the threshold of ascending to become the Internet of Everything (IoE.)

Related:Why tech standards matter

IoT is transitioning from an array of devices that we can control across the Internet into a realm where billions of IoE devices can communicate with each other and make unilateral decisions on our behalf.

This, of course, is the plot of endless dystopian books and movies that end with rogue machines in charge. Yet IoE, at this nascent stage, holds much promise to tilt us towards a utopia where technology helps to resolve our planet’s most intractable problems.

This was the theme of Infineon Technologies’ OktoberTech 2023 conference, which I had the privilege of attending at the Computer History Museum in the heart of Silicon Valley. I had the chance to visit with Thomas Rosteck, Infineon’s Division President of Connected Secure Systems (CSS.)

Infineon supplies semiconductors embedded in smart systems, most notably in automotive, power and IoT. What I found most commendable (more…)

SHARED INTEL Q&A: My thoughts and opinions about cyber threats — as discussed with OneRep

By Erin Kapcynski

Editor’s note: I recently had the chance to participate in a discussion about the overall state of privacy and cybersecurity with Erin Kapczynski, OneRep’s senior vice president of B2B marketing. OneRep provides a consumer service that scrubs your personal information from Google and dozens of privacy-breaching websites. Here is Erin’s Q&A column, which originally went live on OneRep’s well-done blog.)

For the first expert interview on our blog, we welcomed Pulitzer-winning investigative reporter Byron V. Acohido to share his ideas about the current cyber threat landscape, the biggest threats for businesses today, the role of AI and machine learning in cyberattacks and cyberdefence, and the most effective methods for companies to protect themselves.

Byron is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Last Watchdog on Privacy & Security. He previously chronicled the emergence of cybercrime while covering Microsoft for USA TODAY. His news analysis columns, podcasts, and videos are crafted to foster a useful understanding of complex privacy and cybersecurity developments for (more…)

STEPS FORWARD Q&A: Will ‘proactive security’ engender a shift to risk-based network protection?

By Byron V. Acohido

Something simply must be done to slow, and ultimately reverse, attack surface expansion.

Related: What Cisco’s buyout of Splunk really signals

We’re in the midst of driving towards a dramatically scaled-up and increasingly connected digital ecosystem. Companies are obsessed with leveraging cloud-hosted IT infrastructure and the speedy software development and deployment that goes along with that.

And yet it remains all too easy for malicious hackers to get deep access, steal data, spread ransomware, disrupt infrastructure and attain long run unauthorized access.

I heard a cogent assessment of the shift that must take at the Omdia Analyst Summit at Black Hat USA 2023. In a keynote address, Omdia’s Eric Parizo, managing prinicipal analyst, and Andrew Braunberg, principal analyst, unveiled an (more…)

Black Hat insights: Generative AI begins seeping into the security platforms that will carry us forward

By Byron V. Acohido

LAS VEGAS – Just when we appeared to be on the verge of materially shrinking the attack surface, along comes an unpredictable, potentially explosive wild card: generative AI.

Related: Can ‘CNAPP’ do it all?

Unsurprisingly, generative AI was in the spotlight at Black Hat USA 2023, which returned to its full pre-Covid grandeur here last week.

Maria Markstedter, founder of Azeria Labs, set the tone in her opening keynote address. Artificial intelligence has been in commercial use for many decades; Markstedter recounted why this potent iteration of AI is causing so much fuss, just now.

Generative AI makes use of a large language model (LLM) – an advanced algorithm that applies deep learning techniques to massive data sets. The popular service, ChatGPT, is based on OpenAI’s LLM, which taps into everything available across the Internet through 2021, plus anything a user cares (more…)

SHARED INTEL: From airbags to malware: vehicle cyber safety arises in the age of connected cars

By Kolawole Samuel Adebayo

In an increasingly interconnected world, the evolution of the automotive industry presents an exciting yet daunting prospect.

Related: Privacy rules for vehicles

As vehicles continue to offer modern features such as app-to-car connectivity, remote control access, and driver assistance software, a huge risk lurks in the shadows.

The physical safety of things like airbags, rearview mirrors, and brakes is well accounted for; yet cybersecurity auto safety concerns are rising to the fore.

What used to be a focus on physical safety has now shifted to cybersecurity due to the widened attack surface that connected cars present. The rapid advancements in electric vehicles (EVs) has only served to heighten these concerns.

Funso Richard, Information Security Officer at Ensemble, highlighted the gravity of these threats. He told Last Watchdog that apart from conventional attacks, such as data theft and vehicle theft, much more worrisome types of attacks are emerging. These include ransomware targeting backend servers, distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, destructive malware, and even weaponizing charging stations to deploy malware. (more…)

MY TAKE: What if Big Data and AI could be intensively focused on health and wellbeing?

By Byron V. Acohido

Might it be possible to direct cool digital services at holistically improving the wellbeing of each citizen of planet Earth?

Preserving privacy for a greater good

A movement aspiring to do just that is underway — and it’s not being led by a covey of tech-savvy Tibetan monks. This push is coming from the corporate sector.

Last August, NTT, the Tokyo-based technology giant, unveiled its Health and Wellbeing initiative – an ambitious effort to guide corporate, political and community leaders onto a more enlightened path. NTT, in short, has set out to usher in a new era of human wellness.

Towards this end it has begun sharing videos, whitepapers and reports designed to rally decision makers from all quarters to a common cause. The blue-sky mission is to bring modern data mining and machine learning technologies to bear delivering personalized services that ameliorate not just physical ailments, but also mental and even emotional ones.

That’s a sizable fish to fry. I had a lively discussion with Craig Hinkley, CEO of NTT Application Security, about the thinking behind this crusade. I came away encouraged that some smart folks are striving to pull us in a well-considered direction. For a full drill down, please give the accompanying podcast a listen. Here are a few key takeaways:

A new starting point

Modern medicine has advanced leaps and bounds in my lifetime when it comes to diagnosing and treating severe illnesses. Even so, for a variety of reasons, healthcare sectors in the U.S. and other jurisdictions have abjectly failed over the past 20 years leveraging Big Data to innovate personalized healthcare services. (more…)

News alert: Chiral announces $3.8m funding round to advance nanomaterial chip manufacturing

Zurich, Switzerland, Feb. 27, 2024 — Chipmaking has become one of the world’s most critical technologies in the last two decades. The main driver of this explosive growth has been the continuous scaling of silicon technology (widely known as the Moore’s Law).

But these advances in silicon technology are slowing down, as we reach the physical limits of silicon. For this reason, the industry has been investing heavily in nanomaterials like carbon nanotube, graphene and TMDs, which are expected to enable chips with unprecedented functionality. However, making electronic devices with these extremely small materials at speed, with precision, and without compromising on quality has been a long-standing obstacle.

Nanotechnology company Chiral is today announcing a $3.8m funding round to address this challenge head on, innovating the way nanomaterials are integrated into devices. Its expertise in nanotechnology, automation, and high-precision robotics will be pivotal in the industry’s move beyond silicon to the next generation of electronics. (more…)

News alert: Harter Secrest & Emery announces designation as NetDiligence-authorized Breach Coac

Rochester, N.Y. Feb. 15, 2024 Harter Secrest & Emery LLP, a full-service business law firm with offices throughout New York, is pleased to announce that it has been selected as a NetDiligence-authorized Breach Coach®, a designation only extended to law firms that demonstrate competency and sophistication in data breach response.

Through its Breach Coach® designation, NetDiligence recognizes Harter Secrest & Emery as an industry leader and enhances the firm’s reputation as a trusted resource for clients navigating the complex landscape of data incident response. Harter Secrest & Emery is one of only approximately 25 firms in the world to be recognized with this designation, highlighting the firm’s deep experience and steadfast commitment to its clients. (more…)

News alert: DigiCert taps tenured tech execs Jugnu Bhatia as its new CFO, Dave Packer as CRO

Lehi, Utah – Feb. 14, 2024  – DigiCert, a leading global provider of digital trust, today announced new additions to its executive leadership team with the appointments of Jugnu Bhatia as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Dave Packer as Chief Revenue Officer (CRO).

“DigiCert just closed its largest quarterly bookings in the company history, and I am thrilled to have such exceptional leaders joining our executive team at an important stage in our growth,” said Amit Sinha, CEO of DigiCert. “Jugnu and Dave bring deep operational and leadership experience at scale. With our continued digital trust innovation (more…)

News alert: Kiteworks named as a founding member of NIST’s new AI safety consortium – ‘AISIC’

San Mateo, Calif., Feb. 13, 2023 – The U.S. White House announced groundbreaking collaboration between OpenPolicy and leading innovation companies, including Kiteworks, which delivers data privacy and compliance for sensitive content communications through its Private Content Network.

The U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Artificial Intelligence Safety Institute Consortium (AISIC) will act as a collaborative platform where both public sector and private sector leading organizations will provide guidance on standards and methods in the development of trustworthy AI.

The Kiteworks platform provides customers with a Private Content Network that enables them to employ zero-trust policy management in the governance and protection of sensitive content communications, including the ingestion of sensitive content into generative AI (GenAI).

Kiteworks unifies, tracks, controls, and secures sensitive content moving within, into, and out of organizations. With Kiteworks, organizations can significantly improve risk management and ensure regulatory compliance on all sensitive content communications. (more…)