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GUEST ESSAY: Caring criminals — why some ransomware gangs now avoid targeting hospitals

By Zac Amos

Ransomware is a significant threat to businesses worldwide. There are many gangs that work together to orchestrate increasingly damaging attacks. However, some of these groups follow codes of conduct that prevent them from purposefully targeting hospitals.

Related: How Putin has weaponized ransomware

In mid-March 2020, representatives from the cybersecurity website BleepingComputer contacted numerous ransomware gangs to ask if they’d continue targeting hospitals during the unprecedented COVID-19 public health threat.

Many responded by saying they already avoid hospitals and emergency services infrastructure. Others promised to cease attacking health care facilities until the pandemic eased.

An April 2020 study from VMware Carbon Black revealed a 148% ransomware increase between March and April 2020. However, it’s worth noting that health care was the seventh-most targeted industry during that time, when it was

GUEST ESSAY: The timing is ripe to instill trust in the open Internet — and why this must get done

By Hannah Aubry

In today’s digital age, trust has become a cornerstone of building a better Internet.

Preserving privacy for a greater good

The Internet was designed as a platform for peer research, not for the vast scale and diverse uses we see today. Over the decades, it’s grown in a way that has left it with many inherent vulnerabilities.

These vulnerabilities, not borne out of malice, were the result of choices made with limited information available at the time.

Fastly addresses these technological vulnerabilities by utilizing tools like Rust and WebAssembly. Leveraging WebAssembly’s sandboxing capabilities allows us to isolate potential risks, while Rust provides the memory safety essential for our modern internet applications.

Taming the human side

But the challenges facing the internet don’t just lie in its technical foundations. The societal aspects of technology, the human side, have grown equally unruly.

The trust deficit we experience today is palpable. People are wary of technology and its creators. Our major platforms, tools integral to modern life, are now used as vehicles for misinformation and chaos. A disconnect exists between those

GUEST ESSAY: Robust data management can prevent theft, guard intellectual property

By Clark Frogley

In an era of global economic uncertainty, fraud levels tend to surge, bringing to light the critical issue of intellectual property (IP) theft.

Related: Neutralizing insider threats

This pervasive problem extends beyond traditional notions of fraud, encompassing both insider threats and external risks arising from partnerships, competitors, and poor IP management. Organizations dedicate substantial resources to detecting and preventing fraudulent activity in customer accounts.

Yet, the rise of internal fraud presents a unique challenge. Perpetrated by insiders who already possess unrestricted access to highly sensitive data and systems, internal fraud not only defies easy prevention but also imposes substantial costs.

Annually, American businesses suffer losses exceeding $50 billion, underscoring the impact on competitiveness in today’s fiercely competitive landscape. To navigate this complex landscape, business leaders must strike

GUEST ESSAY: Securing your cryptocurrency — best practices for Bitcoin wallet security

By Ronin Ashford

Over time, Bitcoin has become the most widely used cryptocurrency in the world. Strong security measures become increasingly important as more people use this digital currency.

Preserving privacy for a greater good

For managing and keeping your Bitcoin assets, you must need a bitcoin wallet, which is a digital version of a conventional wallet. The protection of your priceless digital assets will be guaranteed by this article’s discussion of the best techniques for protecting your Bitcoin wallet.Bu

A Bitcoin wallet is a piece of software that enables users to transmit, receive, and store bitcoins securely. While it performs similarly to a regular wallet, it stores digital assets in the form of cryptographic keys rather than actual cash or credit cards. These wallets are available in a variety of formats, including hardware wallets, online wallets, mobile wallets, and desktop wallets. Users can select depending on their unique needs

STEPS FORWARD: Regulators are on the move to set much needed IoT security rules of the road

By Byron V. Acohido

New government rules coupled with industry standards meant to give formal shape to the Internet of Things (IoT) are rapidly quickening around the globe.

Preserving privacy for a greater good

This is to be expected. After all, government mandates combined with industry standards are the twin towers of public safety. Without them the integrity of our food supplies, the efficacy of our transportation systems and reliability of our utilities would not be what they are.

When it comes to IoT, we must arrive at specific rules of the road if we are to tap into the full potential of smart cities, autonomous transportation and advanced healthcare.

In the absence of robust, universally implemented rules of the road, cybercriminals will continue to have the upper hand and wreak even more havoc than they now do. Threat actors all-too-readily compromise, disrupt and maliciously manipulate the comparatively simple IoT systems we havein operation today.

I had an eye-opening conversation about all of this with Steve Hanna, distinguished engineer at Infineon Technologies, a global semiconductor manufacturer based in Neubiberg, Germany. We went over how governments around the world are stepping up their efforts to impose IoT security legislation and regulations designed to keep users safe.

This is happening at the same time as tech industry consortiums are

GUEST ESSAY: Why any sudden influx of spam emails is an indicator of a likely security issue

By Zac Amos

We all get spam emails, and while it’s annoying, it’s not usually anything to worry about. However, getting a huge influx of spam at once is a warning sign. People suddenly getting a lot of spam emails may be the target of a sophisticated cyber-attack.

Related: How AI can relieve security pros

What causes spam emails? Someone leaking, stealing or selling account information can cause a sudden influx of spam emails. It may also be a part of a more targeted attack. There are four main causes of spam emails:

•Sold email: Websites sometimes sell email address information to third parties.

•Spam interaction: Previous interactions with spam are a signal to scammers. They send more messages when they know the account is active and possibly interested.

•Leaked email: Companies or third-party vendors put email address security at risk when they experience data breaches.

•Mailing list: Signing up for a mailing list may trigger spam. Even without hitting enter,

GUEST ESSAY: Here’s why shopping for an EV feels very much like shopping for a new laptop

By James Jeffs

Computer chips have been part of cars for a long time, but no one really cares about them until they stop working or they are late to the production line.

Related: Rasing the bar of cyber safety for autos

However, the research within IDTechEx’s “Semiconductors for Autonomous and Electric Vehicles 2023-2033” report shows that trends within the automotive industry mean consumers will soon be caring far more about what chips are in their cars. IDTechEx expects that purchasing a new vehicle will soon feel like shopping for a new laptop.

What are the main concerns when buying a laptop? For most people, it will be things like how long the battery will last, how nice the screens are, and what computer chip it comes with.

Evaluating a vehicle’s worth based on the number of cylinders, horsepower, and miles per gallon will soon be irrelevant. We already know that electric vehicles will be dominating the market soon, ticking off the choice of vehicle based on how long the battery lasts, but what about the other two criteria?

It has been hard to escape the screenification of car cabins over the past few years.